As many of us know, poor quality rest can significantly impact our health and well-being, so establishing a good bedtime routine is something I always recommend to my clients.
Here are my top tips to get a good night’s rest:
- Establish a bedtime routine which has a similar bedtime and waking hour;
- Avoid caffeine around six hours before bedtime, this includes chocolate, coffee, tea and many fizzy drinks;
- Find a comfortable sleep temperature for your bedroom; if the room is too hot or cold, you simply won’t sleep well.
- Remove technology from your bedroom. Your bedroom should be a relaxed space, so stimulating technology such as laptops, TVs, tablets and smartphones are a big no-no. Apply these rules to your children’s bedrooms too, and create a calm space for them to relax;
- Switch off from tech! Always turn off technology at least two hours before bedtime. The blue light from our smartphones and tablets suppresses the production of melatonin (the chemical which induces sleep) and makes it harder for us to rest;
- Lavender oil. Try using lavender oil in the evening to help calm the body and mind, preparing it for rest. Lavender is historically renowned for its restful qualities;
- Remove clutter. Turn your bedroom into a restful sanctuary – remove all clutter to create a calm space. Staring at a pile of washing, paper work or mess is not the ideal view when trying to rest;
- Write down worries. A number of my clients report they often wake in the night with worries or thinking about things they need to remember for the next day. I always recommend they put a notebook and pencil by the bed each night. (Don’t be tempted to use your ‘phone, remember the no-tech rule). If you wake in the night, you can jot down any worries or action points. This way you are taking them from your mind and giving yourself permission to relax again. Remember once it’s on the notebook you can begin to relax again.
It may take a few days to establish a good sleeping pattern, so during this time be kind to yourself, relax and good quality rest should come.
If you are concerned about any aspect of your health always seek a professional medical opinion.
How to Cope with Sleep Problems (mind.org.uk)
Steps to Success: Sleep for children with ASC (togethertrust.org.uk)