Getting better sleep is tricky for many of us; we work long hours, take on too many responsibilities, and battle mental health issues such as depression and anxiety that keep us from being able to rest easy. Unfortunately, this lack of adequate sleep can lead to serious health issues, both physical and mental, and can keep you from being able to function properly at work or at school. That’s why it’s so important to look for ways to rest better, from learning how to relax and unwind before bed to turning your bedroom into a haven for restorative sleep through adjustments to the temperature of your room, the quality of your bedding, and the color of your walls.
Invest in a Good Mattress
A good mattress can help you sleep better and longer, meaning you’ll feel rested and energized when you wake up. If the lifespan of your mattress has surpassed 10 years, the time has come for a new one; however, mattress shopping can be overwhelming. There are so many types of mattresses out there, all with different materials (innerspring, latex, memory foam, hybrid, etc.) and a range of prices. Start by zeroing in on your sleep style to help you weed out models. For example, if you tend to sleep on your side, your ideal mattress will provide the right support and enough pressure relief for maximum comfort and proper spine alignment. As you winnow down your choices, let trial periods, shipping and return policies help you make your decision.
Turn Off the Devices
Most of us find it difficult to live without our smartphones, laptops, and tablets, but it’s important to turn them off at least an hour before bedtime. In fact, if possible, remove anything with a screen from your bedroom so you won’t be tempted. The blue light these devices emit can interfere with your sleep habits and can keep you awake even when you’re tired. Instead, read a good book, take a hot shower, or listen to some relaxing music before you lie down.
Choose the Right Colors
The right colors can have a major effect on your ability to get good sleep, so choose them wisely when it comes to decor and paint. Red, for example, is a very energetic color and can work against you when it’s time to sleep. Calm, neutral colors — especially green — can help you get to sleep quickly and find a deeper rest throughout the night; REM sleep is imperative for good rest.
Consistency is key when it comes to finding good sleep habits, so it’s important to make sure you don’t stay up too late on the weekends. In general, it’s best to have no more than an hour’s difference between your regular bedtime and your weekend bedtime. This will help your body and mind strike the right balance no matter what is going on in your life and can keep your sleep-wake cycle on the right track.
Improving your sleep habits can help you feel better in just about every way, but it’s important that you look for the best ways to start that will be meaningful to you; what works for one person won’t necessarily work for another. With a good plan, you can create the best sleep routine for your schedule and keep your mental and physical health in good shape at the same time.