5 Steps to a Better Sleep
A bedtime routine you can start tonight.
We’ve all been there. Going to bed around 10pm with the best intentions. Instead we find ourselves wide eyed awake watching the clock pass 12am and now 1am. You’re thinking of your early AM meeting and how you are going to get through the day on minimal sleep. Now you’re on Instagram, checking out your favorite Australian bloggers who are posting in real time. WTF.
Insomnia is a little bitch. In our incredibly “busy” world, it’s not hard to believe that one-third of Canadians sleep fewer hours than what is recommended for optimal physical AND mental health.
When we seek care from our family doctor, lifestyle changes should be their first line of intervention. Obviously, this is not always the case and you may walk out with some sort of script.
Rest assured, there is definitely some relief and we’ve created a bedtime routine for you to start tonight.
Remember, sleep quality is just as important as sleep quantity. You may have been in bed for 8 hours last night, but only slept well for 6 hours.
Your New Bedtime Routine:
1. Turn off your devices.
Always my first recommendation. We spend our days behind computer screens and on our phones. Always staring at a blue screen. When we stare at our blue screens close to bed time this inhibits melatonin from being released. Melatonin is our sleep inducing hormone. Instead, spend time with your family and loved ones without the distraction of blue lights. Set a time for yourself that devices go off.
2. Make a Snooze Brew.
This one is a given and a favorite. A blend of some of the best sleep inducing botanicals. Valerian is a well known sedative, and will improve the quality of your sleep. Typically, it is combined with other botanicals because the smell of valerian is something wicked. In our blend, we have combined valerian with lavender, chamomile, oatstraw and passionflower. Combined together these herbs will set you up for a very comfortable sleep.
3. Take a bath, an Epsom salt bath.
Having a warm bath to finish your day is not only going to help you sleep better, it also is a great time to be by yourself. When you step out of that warmth and into your cooler bedroom, your body temperature will drop and this signals your body that it’s time to slow down. Even better – add some Epsom salts to that tub.
4. Keep it cool.
I’m sure you all can relate in the difficulties of falling asleep in a hot room. As mentioned above, your body temperature needs to drop to induce sleep. That’s why I promote a hot bath before bed. As your body cools down it signals your body to slow down. Each person will need a different “specific” temperature, you don’t want to run the room temperature too cold either or your body will work too hard to regulate.
5. Keep it a routine.
This one is the most important. Keeping your sleep in a routine is vital, literally. Once your circadian rhythm is primed and working at its finest, your bedtime and wake time will be consistent and you will be feeling your finest. This includes weekends!