Getting enough restorative sleep is critical to maintaining good physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual health. You might have heard the “Why am I so tired in the morning?” question a couple of times from family members, friends, and even colleagues. Lack of sufficient sleep can spiral down to the next day, making you feel grumpy and tired. It has profound consequences on your health including obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Read on to see the 8 bad sleeping habits you need to ditch to get restorative sleep.
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Some bad sleeping habits that detriment the quality of sleep you get at night
Eating too close to bedtime
Eating too close to bedtime gets your acids going. These acids tend to creep up in your throat when you lie down to snooze, thereby disrupting the quality of your sleep. In case you crave a snack before going to sleep, get foods that are rich in calcium and tryptophan such as a bowl of cereal with milk, or crackers and cheese. These foods promote sleep.
Taking caffeine and nicotine too close to bedtime
Caffeine has a half-life of up-to 10 hours. Once you have caffeine or nicotine in your system, it becomes difficult to sleep. These two beverages are stimulants and take a long time to wear off your system. They disrupt the body’s internal clock and may cause sluggishness and reduced concentration during the day. Some of the foods that contain caffeine include tea, soda, chocolate, and coffee.
Taking alcohol before bedtime
Unlike the common belief that alcohol helps promote sleep, this information is misleading. Alcohol may make you drowsy, and you are more likely to fall asleep quicker. However, once your body begins to metabolize it, there will be a period of arousal that will disturb your sleep. Also, alcohol has a tendency to suppress breathing and may cause sleep apnea.
Technology in bed
Just like the TV or computer, you should not have a tablet, laptop, cell phone, e-reader or portable game controller in your bedroom. These devices emit a light that disrupts the quality of your sleep. They also have content that may rob you of your sleep depending on how engaging it is. These activities prevent your brain from shutting down and may promote insomnia.
Keeping your alarm or cellphone too close to the bed
Once you set your alarm, place it as far away from your bed. This also applies to the cell that most people use as their wake-up device. With your alarm or phone nearby, you will constantly keep looking at the time, and this may create anxiety, making it difficult to sleep. Likewise, with your phone nearby, it makes it easy for you to check new texts or emails continuously. Keeping these devices away from your bed will enable you to get sufficient uninterrupted restorative sleep. Moreover, you will reduce your chances of hitting the snooze button repeatedly.
Installing a warmer in your bedroom
Ideally, your bedroom should be slightly cooler than the rest of the house. Your body temperature naturally has the ability to dip when you go to sleep. However, with a warmer in your bedroom, your body may not be able to dip thereby depriving you off restful sleep.
Irregular sleeping hours
Having a routine of going to bed and waking up at the same time every day is key to better sleep. This routine should go up to the weekends. Depriving yourself of sleep during weekdays and binge sleeping on weekends is a bad sleeping habit, and it does more harm to your cycle than good.
Exercising too close to bedtime
Exercise is good for your health and amp; fitness. Still, if you exercise too close to bedtime, it may interfere with your bedtime since it acts as a stimulant thereby preventing you from falling asleep. If you work out in the evening, make sure it is at least three hours before your bedtime.
Sleep is an efficient way to rest your body after a hard day of work. It allows the body to relax and refresh itself completely. It also has the capacity to affect your overall health. Eliminate these bad sleeping habits to enjoy restorative sleep and the health benefits that come with it. In case you continue experiencing difficulty sleeping throughout the night even after practicing proper sleeping hygiene, you may be having a sleeping disorder, and it is prudent that you see your primary care physician.