Having trouble sleeping? This could help!

Sleep is extremely important to our health! It allows our bodies and minds to repair themselves so that we are fully energised, and as healthy as we can be! Getting a poor amount of sleep has been linked to lots of mental health issues such as anxiety and depression. So, it is important that we try to get a good night’s rest to avoid feeling low. If you are struggling to sleep or your thoughts are keeping you awake, here are some tips to help you hit the pillow with ease.

Understand your sleep problems 

Firstly, it is important to find out why you might be having trouble sleeping. Are you worried about something in particular? Are you stressed? Or have you been having trouble sleeping for a while?

It is important to ask these questions, as often you can help yourself to sleep better by dealing with the initial problems. For example, if you are worried about your studies and you think this might be affecting your sleep, then reach out and speak to someone about it. You might find that once you have got your problems off your chest that you are able to sleep much better.

If you’ve been having trouble sleeping for a while, you could have Insomnia. If this is the case, this has been affecting your daily life and you may need to seek advice from a GP. 

Watch the clock 

You should try to set a sleeping schedule, as this will help to teach your body when it is time to sleep. It can be difficult to get into a sleeping routine if you are going to bed at different times every night. So, try to keep to regular sleep hours – yes even on the weekends! Go to bed and wake up at a similar time every day. This way your body clock will adjust, and you will be able to sleep easier. Avoid napping during the day too, as this can prevent you from sleeping during the night.

Create a night-time routine 

Having a good night-time routine can also be very helpful. Using technology keeps our minds active so if you are going to bed just after watching TV, working on your computer or using social media, your brain won’t have had time to relax.

Try to have a night-time routine and avoid using technology before bed. For example, you could have a bath, make a hot chocolate, read a book or listen to some music. These are all activities that will help you to unwind and you might find you sleep better if you put them into your night-time routine.

Things to avoid  

As I have just mentioned, using technology before bed can affect the quality of sleep. So, it is a good idea to avoid using your phone before bed.

As well as phones, try to avoid foods and drinks that might keep you awake. For example, drinking caffeine, alcohol or sugary drinks or eating sugary foods before bed can also cause you to have trouble sleeping. So, try to avoid these before going

Calm your mind and create restful environment 

It can be hard to forget about our worries, but it is important to try to put these anxieties out of our minds before we sleep.

To help you to do this, create a restful environment and practice an activity that might help you to relax. Firstly, make sure your room is dark, quiet and cool. These environments have been proven to help us to fall asleep quicker and stay asleep for longer. Next, practice an activity that will help to calm your mind. For example, write down your worries from the day and let them go, try some deep breathing or put on some mindfulness podcasts. This will put your mind at ease, so that you can sleep better.

Move more, sleep better 

Being active throughout the day can also help us to sleep better. You might find that during the lockdown your sleep has worsened and being less active could be a contributing factor. Try to keep as active as you can, even if it is only going for a walk once a day. You could try to go for a longer walk or try a home workout! If these aren’t for you, there are lots of other ways you can keep active throughout the day. For example, baking and gardening are still ways for you to keep active. You will find the more you do during the day, the better you sleep!

These tips could really help you to improve your quality of sleep. However, if you are regularly having problems sleeping, you could have Insomnia. Click here for advice from the NHS about how you can help yourself and when to seek help from your GP.
To get some ideas for relaxing activities, deep breathing exercises or good home workouts click here.  

If you are experiencing mental health issues or you are worried about someone who is affected by mental health, click here for advice and support.


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