Sleep hygiene doesn’t just refer to the cleanliness of your environment, but rather – what you do to prepare for sleep as part of a pre-sleep routine
Getting a good night’s sleep should be easy, but if you’ve been having problems falling or staying asleep recently you may be suffering from poor sleep hygiene. Ensuring good sleep hygiene is easy and involves following a few simple steps to encourage quality sleep, every night.
• Establish a sleeping pattern.
Heading to bed at the same time each night and waking at the same time each morning can actually help train the body to fall asleep, and stay asleep, more successfully.
• Get plenty of exercise.
Not only does an active lifestyle offer physical health benefits, it can also ensure you get a good night’s sleep. Just make sure you exercise in the morning or afternoon rather than the evening, or choose an activity such as yoga unwind your body and mind later in the day.
• Enjoy the daylight.
Parents are forever telling their children to go out and play in the sunshine- but adults should too! Spending time in natural light actually helps to maintain a healthy sleep/wake cycle.
• Indulge yourself in a regular bedtime routine.
Another one not just for the kids, a regular routine of relaxation and unwinding at bedtime can enhance your sleep hygiene and make falling and staying asleep easier. Take a warm bath or find a quiet corner to listen to music – try to leave the day’s worries behind you.
• Consider your sleeping environment.
Take a close look at your bedroom; is it dark enough, quiet and a good temperature for sleeping? Would you benefit from a new mattress, comfy pillows or a change of bed linens? Essentially you want an inviting sleep space where you feel comfortable and supported as you relax.