Tossing and turning every night? If so, you are not alone, according to the Sleep Council’s report last year, 22% of Britons do not feel they are getting enough sleep and in fact often only get between five and six hours when up to eight hours are recommended. With the clocks changing at the end of this month, now is the time to understand ways you can beat insomnia, and stop staring at the ceiling of a night time.
Sleep is crucial to our all-round health and wellbeing as much as a healthy diet and regular exercise. Lack of sleep can mean functioning both mentally and physically in our daily lives can be much harder – when this becomes a problem over months or even years, many health challenges can manifest themselves. What can you do to help make sure that you get enough zzz’s and that you can sleep well this summer time?
One of the biggest causes of insomnia according to the Sleep Council is stress, sadly, night times can make daytime problems feel larger. It is really important to tackle stress factors head-on to aid sleep – where resolving problems is not easy it is important to look at ways to help mediate the effects. Try taking a relaxing bath before bed, look for soft sounds to calm you, or try a lavender spray which can help ease the evening mind.
Ditch the Drink
When it comes to our health in general, drinking alcohol in moderation is important, and the effects of excessive alcohol on sleep can be startling. Did you know, alcohol gives you a drugged sleep? In short, you may fall asleep fast, but wake later feeling dehydrated – this prevents you from the most important element of sleep – its restorative benefits – after drinking alcohol it is really important to drink water to restore your fluid levels.
Eat Early Evening
What time do you typically eat your main evening meal? Fitting meals around a busy lifestyle can mean that dinner time is increasingly later. However, if you eat a particularly heavy meal later in the evening which requires a lot of digestion, you could play havoc with your sleep pattern. You should not eat for two hours before you go to bed as your body will be putting its efforts into digestion instead of sleeping.
As well as a regular bedtime, it is a good idea to make time at the end of the day to wind down so that you are ready for sleep. One of the best ways to help you unwind is to have a digital detox and time away from gadgets omitting bright light which can interfere with sleep. Sleep experts say we should down our devices at least an hour before bedtime so we are ready to fully rest.
Remember, British Summer Time 2019 begins at 1.00am on Sunday, March 31.
Clocks will go forward by one hour to British Summer Time, meaning evenings will suddenly grow a lot lighter, whilst for a short time, mornings will become a little darker. British Summer Time was first introduced as part of the 1916 Summer Time Act which followed a campaign led by builder William Willet – the change meant there would be an hour more of productive daylight in summer evenings.[/box]