Over 35% of Americans don’t get the recommended amount of sleep we need each night to function at our most efficient capacities. Since trouble sleeping is such a common problem, it is often thought of as a less serious issue, but this is far from the case.
A lack of sleep can have a multitude of negative effects on your mental and physical health. Healthy sleep hygiene habits can provide a renewed sense of focus, heightened energy, and can even result in better heart health and improved moods.
Understanding how to combat your trouble sleeping is therefore crucial to achieving a greater sense of balance and wellbeing. From finding and investing in the best mattress for your sleep, to using mindfulness practices to lull your brain into a space of calm, there’s a lot you can do to enhance your experience of rest.
Here are some of our top tips when it comes to finding ways to quieten the mind and prepare yourself appropriately for a good night’s rest.
Tip #1: Guided Meditation
Mindfulness and meditative practices are an incredibly effective way to lull yourself to sleep, especially if you struggle with sleep anxiety. A quick look online, and you’ll find ones that are specifically created for sleep. You can find these on YouTube, Spotify, and mindfulness apps like HeadSpace or Calm.
Finding the right bed frame to get in position for your meditative practice can make a significant impact on the quality of your sleep. Adjustable bed frames can help you sit upright while still making the most of the comfort your mattress provides.
The best adjustable bed frames will often come with a host of other features too, including massage zones, which can be especially useful if you’re trying to calm down and meditate right before bedtime.
Tip #2: Muscle Relaxation
Progressive muscle relaxation is a technique that uses physiological responses to ease mental tension. It works by breathing in slowly for about 30-60 seconds, taking a deep breath and tensing your toes and feet for 3-4 seconds, and then relaxing them.
Continuing upwards through your body, tense and release your muscles, and repeat the process three times. Not only does focussing your energy on your body allow you to take your mind off other stressors, but it also puts you in a physical state of relaxation, which primes your body properly for a good night’s rest.
Take ten minutes every night to start putting this into practice, and remember not to put any pressure on yourself to feel the positive effects of this immediately. As with everything else, practice makes perfect.
Tip #3: Prep Your Bedroom
Your bedroom, and more specifically your bedroom furniture, can have a serious impact on the quality of sleep you experience. Keep your room cool by keeping an eye on the temperature – the ideal setting is usually between 15.5 to 19.4 degrees Celcius.
You’ll also want to ensure you have the best mattress you can find for your sleeping position. The best mattresses for sleeping well are ones that provide equal amounts of support and comfort through the night. Memory foam mattresses tend to be effective solutions for those who’ve struggled with trouble sleeping. Often overlooked the sheets you use on your bed will also impact the quality of your sleep. Cotton or bamboo bed sheets offer breathability, comfort and are hypo-allergenic to ensure you get the best quality sleep possible.
Keeping specific features in mind will help you find the best mattress you can for yourself. You might want a memory foam mattress that also stays cool – this is especially important if you stay in a warmer area or you have a room prone to stuffiness. Cooling memory foam mattresses will respond to your body temperature ensuring you stay comfortable through the night. The best mattresses are also usually engineered with ease of maintenance in mind – so check that they’re hypoallergenic and that they do in fact come with some kind of stain protection.
Tip #4: Dealing With Sleep Anxiety
One way to deal with trouble sleeping, and more specifically, sleep anxiety, is by maintaining a journal. Writing out your thoughts can be a cathartic way to expel any worries you have on to paper, and can work to relive your mind off of some of the burdens that come with it.
There are other ways to tune out some of your more anxious thoughts in the lead up to your rest. Using sound meditation or white noise to help you get to sleep faster might be a useful way to do exactly this. Plenty of apps offer ambient sounds that can lull your brain into a state of relaxation before switching off to let your sleep cycles do their thing.
If you’re convinced you’ve invested in the best mattress for your rest, whether it be a memory foam mattress or not, you might wish to look into other sleep accessories that may be equally useful in calming those bedtime nerves down.
Weighted blankets have had some efficacy in providing a sense of comfort and security to those struggle with a lack of sleep. Weighted blankets work by using gentle pressure stimulation to evenly distribute weight across the body as you sleep. Like the best mattresses on the market, this causes a physical sensation of deep comfort in the mind, leading you to fall asleep quicker, and stay asleep for as long as you need.
Finding the right combination of calming techniques that work for you is the first step towards correcting your sleep cycles. Look into finding the top rated mattress and other sleep accessories that can make an active contribution to your comfort through the night.
When you begin viewing sleep as something that has the potential to impact your overall sense of wellbeing, you’ll begin to take some of these strategies a lot more seriously. While having trouble sleeping might be a common problem, this makes it no less serious, so ensure you’re being proactive in the way you deal with this.
With the help of these calming techniques, you’ll be experiencing a healthier sleep cycle and a more balanced version of yourself sooner than you know it.