Sleep is essential to overall health and wellness, yet many of us don’t get enough quality restful slumber. There are several effective strategies available to enhance the quality of our restorative zzzs – and ultimately increase overall wellbeing – including these simple techniques for bettering our sleeping patterns and bettering overall health.
Commence with good sleep hygiene – practicing behaviors which promote quality restful restful rest – can make all the difference when it comes to feeling relaxed and revitalized. Modifying your sleeping habits could make an immediate difference when it comes to feeling revitalized and refreshed!
1. Exercise Regularly
An effective fitness regimen is one of the best ways to enhance overall health. Exercise helps ward off many diseases and prolong life expectancy.
Regular exercise helps protect both heart health and muscle strength, as well as lower the risk of osteoporosis, arthritis and other bone-related problems.
Running can help improve both your mood and energy levels by releasing endorphins – pleasure-inducing chemicals which create feelings of wellbeing and well-being.
Yoga can improve sleep quality and strengthen your immune system. Furthermore, it reduces stress and anxiety which are known to contribute to insomnia and poor quality restful slumber.
2. Keep a Journal
Journaling can be an excellent way to express and explore your feelings, thoughts, and experiences as well as keeping track of goals and progress.
Studies have demonstrated the therapeutic power of writing can increase both memory retention and alertness, so keeping a journal should become part of your routine, according to Delmonte.
Journaling can easily become part of your daily routine by writing down your thoughts before bed each night, according to Antonino. Journaling may provide a relaxing activity and even help improve sleep quality.
Your journal may also serve as an effective way of recording any issues preventing you from sleeping well – from stressors in your life to mental health concerns.
3. Avoid Screen Time
An excessive screen time can have serious detrimental consequences on both your physical health and overall wellbeing, including eye strain, sleep disruption, and more.
To avoid this situation, the best strategy is to set and enforce reasonable screen-time limits for everyone in your family. Start by tracking how much screen time everyone consumes.
Limiting screen time will allow more time for other activities, like physical exercise. This will improve overall health while decreasing risks such as obesity and heart disease.
Apps can also help monitor screen time. They will track how often you use it and provide reminders for when to take a break from this habit.
4. Avoid Caffeine & Nicotine
If you have difficulty sleeping through the night, eliminating caffeine and nicotine may help. Both substances can interfere with getting quality restful rest as well as increase your risk for developing sleeping disorders.
Researchers from Florida Atlantic University conducted an investigation over 5,164 days on 785 individuals using wrist-watch-like sensors known as actigraphy to measure sleep quality as well as daily sleep diaries to record alcohol, caffeine and nicotine intake within four hours of bedtime.
Looking at their data, the researchers discovered that nicotine had a substantial impact on insomnia, shortening sleep duration by an average of 43 minutes while increasing fragmentation and decreasing efficiency.
5. Avoid Alcohol
Alcohol is an extremely powerful depressant that can interfere with sleep, as it depresses your central nervous system – the part responsible for sleep regulation.
Sleep disturbance can also interfere with your routines, waking you multiple times throughout the night and leading to issues like insomnia (difficulty falling asleep) or sleep apnea, where breathing stops multiple times overnight. This can result in issues like insomnia (difficulty staying asleep) and even sleep apnea (when breathing stops multiple times per night).
Your sleep cycle consists of multiple stages, with deep restorative sleep occurring more in the first half of the night and rapid eye movement sleep (REM) occurring later.
If you are experiencing difficulty sleeping or are waking frequently throughout the night, consult a sleep specialist immediately. They can test for and prescribe treatment if necessary.
6. Don’t Smoke
Smoking can do irreparable damage to both your lungs and cardiovascular system, which makes quitting one of the best decisions you can make for your own wellbeing.
Your immune system will strengthen and you’ll become less likely to contract colds and infections, while your lungs become better at clearing away mucus, dust and tar.
Within several months, you should notice your breathing becoming easier and your cough less frequent, with better circulation making running or jumping easier without shortness of breath.
Secondhand smoke should also be avoided to safeguard health; its exposure can lead to lung cancer and other severe respiratory diseases.
7. Don’t Drink Too Much Water
Water is essential to overall good health, helping maintain an ideal body temperature, protect sensitive tissues like spinal cord nerves, flush out waste from your system and boost energy levels. Furthermore, drinking enough water also supports joint lubrication, increases energy and promotes skin health.
Consuming too much water can be harmful. Drinking excess liquid dilutes sodium levels in your bloodstream and can lead to water intoxication – a condition which may result in brain damage or even death.
Make sure you’re drinking enough water throughout the day by keeping a bottle close by so you can track how much you are consuming, or swap out soda drinks with water or beverages containing no sugar.
8. Don’t Eat Too Much
Eating too much can have serious health repercussions, including weight gain and increased risks of metabolic conditions such as diabetes or cardiovascular disease.
Overeating can leave you feeling tired and worn-down, as well as create additional side effects such as mood swings and increased food cravings.
To prevent overeating, the most effective approach is to make changes that foster wellness and help your body reach optimal health.
One effective strategy for doing this is mindful eating. The key is eating slowly and stopping before becoming full.
9. Don’t Oversleep
Oversleeping may seem harmless enough, but too much sleep can be detrimental to one’s health.
Individual sleep needs vary widely; however, experts generally suggest 7-9 hours of uninterrupted restful sleep every night for optimal wellbeing.
Some individuals naturally sleep longer than others, while regularly oversleeping could indicate an underlying health problem or sleeping disorder that requires treatment.
If you find that you consistently oversleep, make an appointment with your physician to discuss it and to identify any underlying factors which might be contributing to it. Doing this could help get the sleep needed while simultaneously improving overall health!
10. Get Enough Light
Resetting your body’s circadian clock and increasing melatonin production are both key to restful nightly rest. Natural light should play an essential role in setting these two processes into motion.
Even if you don’t enjoy being outdoors, it is essential that at least 30 minutes of natural sunlight reach you each day in order to improve both sleep quality and overall health.
Winter months can be especially challenging for many individuals when the cloudy skies don’t provide adequate sunlight. Luckily, there are simple strategies you can employ to ensure you receive ample natural light each day.