If you find yourself never seeming to get enough sleep, there might be more to it than simply restlessness. This article will showcase several different reasons that could be causing you to stay awake at night.
1. Make your room darker
An easy fix would be to get blinds and curtains for your bedroom. Even the tiniest bit of light coming into your room is enough to keep you wide awake at night. Find thick curtains and invest in thick (not flimsy plastic) blinds. Make sure they are measured to fit your window. If there are gaps on the sides it will allow light to come in, which is not what you want. If you can’t find off the rack curtains or blinds, you might need to bite the bullet and invest in the custom variety to ensure a proper fit. The combination of these two will definitely ensure complete darkness—exactly what you’re looking for.
2. Turn off your devices
All those dings and vibrations at night (get your mind out of the gutter) aren’t doing you any good. Those messages, alerts, emails, social media updates, etc. aren’t going to change your life that you need to check them immediately. Turn off your devices or at least put them on silent. The constant alerts that we get have us programmed to quickly grab our phone so we don’t miss out on something important. If something was indeed THAT important that they would need to get ahold of you in the middle of the night, they are probably just going to call you. So, stop the unnecessary noise.
3. Remove the television from your room
Many people feel that they need a television in their bedroom so they can lay in bed, relax, and watch television. What that actually does is program your mind and body to see your bedroom as a place to relax and watch television rather than lay in bed and sleep (among other things—I know where your mind is). Take the television out of the room and stick it anywhere else. Another room, the basement, the garage, anywhere—just get it out of the bedroom so you can reprogram your brain to associate the bedroom for two specific things.
4. Try using a sleep-aid supplement
There are many different products out there that you could try in order to help you fall asleep. Some of them are specific sleep enhancers while other simply calm your nerves. You could even look for products such as ZMA, GABA, and melatonin (to name a few) in order to help you sleep at night. Some people swear by them and others find no relief at all. You might need to experiment with different products and ingredients to find what works best for you and at what dosages.
5. Get a new mattress
Your mattress could actually be putting your body in an uncomfortable position while you sleep. There are individuals who love a mattress that they sink into, while others prefer a firm mattress. Without turning this into a mattress commercial, you should really go to your local mattress retailer and try out new mattresses. Explain to the salesman what you are looking for as well as if you have any “hot spots” when you sleep. For instance, you might wake up with pain in your hips, lower back, neck, etc. If this is the case, make sure you bring that up so the salesman has a better idea of what your needs will be and can point you in the right direction.
6. Turn down the temperature
It’s been shown that you sleep better when the conditions favor on the “chilly” side of the spectrum. When we are hot, it generally makes it more difficult to fall asleep. You can accomplish this task by either turning a fan on in the room, by turning on a window-unit air conditioner if you have one, by opening a window, or by turning down the thermostat in your home so the whole house air conditioner can kick on while you sleep and keep the temperature on the cool side.
7. Watch what you eat and drink before bed
Depending on what you eat and drink late at night, it could be the reason you are lying awake. If you are consuming items with high caffeine contents or high in sugars, that could cause a boost in energy levels which could cause you some restlessness. Try to stay away from such items at least four hours prior to bedtime. In addition to what you drink, how much fluids you drink also plays a role. Drinking large volumes of fluids prior to bed could have you waking up throughout the night to hit the restroom. Taper your fluids down as you get closer to going to sleep.
8. Destress before bed
I can only speak for myself here, but I think a time or two we can all relate to our mind racing as we are trying to sleep. Projects coming due. Things needing to get done around the house. Worrying about a loved one. Finances. Etc. It’s easier said than done, but we all need to destress after a long day. The only way we can allow the body
to recuperate and maintain its health is to get a good night’s sleep. Staying awake worrying about things is not conducive to making your life any better. Try reading a book, meditating, or sitting in a quiet room relaxing and clearing your mind (no electronics nearby to bother you). Find something that forces you to relax and add it to your before bedtime ritual.