ACTIVLIFE BLOG

Sleep hygiene, the answer to insomnia?

No, we aren’t talking about going to bed squeaky clean. Though, it sounds a lot like it, huh? When we talk about sleep hygiene, we are referring to habits and practices that help you to sleep better, resulting in a more well-rested you the next day. If you have trouble sleeping, read on to discover the whats and hows of sleep hygiene!

As with regular hygiene, there are many dos and don’ts. Unknowingly, many of us, particularly night owls, all practice bad habits that are actually harmful towards our sleep hygiene. Examples of bad sleep hygiene practices include sleeping really late at night, waking up late just because there’s no school or work and even using your phone while on your bed, all of which are common practices we are guilty of. And while it’s hard to tear away from these habits, we have to acknowledge that it’s causing us a well-rested night. Sleep hygiene is also used to educate when treating insomnia using cognitive-behavioral therapy. 

Having good sleep is really important, not just physically, but mentally as well. Being well-rested keeps you more alert when you wake up for work or school the next day, improving productivity. Good sleep also aids in weight loss. Do you know, having a good night’s sleep can you burn between 322 to 414 calories a night? That’s nearly an entire meal! A recent study from the United Kingdom even suggests that those who sleep late constantly, are more likely to die early. 

So, with all that said, how can you practice good sleep hygiene to achieve a better night’s rest?

For starters, your habit of using the phone while being on the bed? Get rid of it. Not just that, anything else including reading and talking? Get rid of it. Your bed has to be your dedicated place for two things and two things only, sleep and sex. This has a lot to do with our psychology and telling our brain, “hey, this is what the bed is for.” 

Sure, we have all heard of the benefits of a 1-hour power nap. However, when practicing good sleep hygiene, you should limit your naps in the day to 30 minutes at most or even better, don’t nap at all! You risk entering into a deep sleep and messing up your sleep schedule when night comes. 

We all fall for the temptation of sleeping in during the weekends. However, when it comes to sleep hygiene, it’s crucial that you got to bed at the same time every single night. By setting a regular sleep schedule, you are helping your body develop a good habit for your body clock. This also applies to waking up in the morning. 

The environment that you sleep in is another huge factor in sleep hygiene. Your room should be kept dark and cool when asleep. Other than that, invest in a good mattress and pillow as well to ensure maximum comfort. Sure, it might be a little costly but, your sleep and well-being is a worthwhile investment. 

Last of all, work out. I’m sure you have heard it plenty of times, exercising does help with sleep. It tires you out physically, encouraging you to fall asleep but, don’t do extreme exercises close to bedtime, it will energize you, making it harder to fall asleep. 

There are a lot of good sleep hygiene habits but, start small. Following all of the above suggestions should see you having a more well-rested night and may even help you with your insomnia problems! If you are looking for a place to work out with on the regular, why not check out FitNinja? With an open location concept, they have many exciting 1 to 1 workouts such as Kickblast, TRX, and Fitninja Fusion! Perfect for people with a tight schedule!