You’ve made a plan to get to bed well before midnight and organized your bedroom to be a sleep sanctuary, in part three of our Naturopath’s Guide To Better Sleep, it’s time to look closer at how your evening routines may be interfering in setting your body up for sleep success!
Routine #1: Keep Your Screen Time In Check
Do you watch TV before bed? Are you on the computer before bed or in bed? Are you answering those last few emails on your smart phone as you crawl into bed?
Staring at a glowing source of light at night means that your melatonin levels will take a hit and your sleep quality may suffer. Shut off the screens and electronics, at least an hour before bed – eliminate the light and the radiation and allow your body to descend to into drowsiness gradually and naturally.
Routine #2: Winding Down Routines
Do you run around all day and all evening then crash into bed just to have your mind continue racing?
When melatonin levels start to rise in the evening, the body should be gradually gearing its physiology towards sleep. Maintaining stimulation hinders that natural sleep progression and contributes to insomnia.
Around 7 or 8 p.m., start slowing down: wrap up work, finish exercising, avoid eating anything, and start turning off unnecessary lights around the house. It’s not only kids that need winding-down routines – we all do.
A small cup of herbal tea, a warm bath, some light reading material, or just a bit of quiet TV before 9 p.m. can help settle down and promote that pleasant drowsiness. Right before bed is a good time to meditate or pray to allow yourself to let go of the day. Happy dreaming!