Why maintaining sleep hygiene is important to your wellbeing

Having a fixed waking up time keeps you in a rhythm of consistent sleep.

In Summary

• Having a fixed waking up time, whether it is a weekend or weekday keeps you in a rhythm of consistent sleep.

• Sleeping in socks help you sleep faster by warming up your core

Image: Courtesy: Simpsonhumor

Tossing and turning wondering why you can’t sleep at night? Perhaps you are not paying close attention to your sleep hygiene.

Sleep hygiene is simply maintaining healthy sleeping habits.

Good sleep hygiene is important because sleep itself is crucial for mental and physical health, as well as your overall quality of life.

Humans spend 1/3 of their lives sleeping, although every individual is different and depending on the age, The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention recommends at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep in a day.

For higher quality sleep, sleep hygiene encompasses both environment and habits.

And it is recommended for one to have a fixed wake-up time, as this helps to keep one in a rhythm of consistent sleep.

The sleep foundation notes that excessive sleepiness, frequent yawning, irritability and daytime fatigue are some of the signs of sleep deprivation.

By optimizing your sleep schedule, having a pre-bed routine and daily routine, one can harness habits that make quality sleep more automatic.

Sleep depreviation
Sleep depreviation
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Having a fixed waking up time, whether it is a weekend or weekday keeps you in a rhythm of consistent sleep.

Naps can be a handy way of regaining energy during the day, but overdoing it tends to throw off sleep during the night.

Cut down on caffeine and cigarettes as they stimulate the body in ways that disrupt sleep.

Be physically active and moderate your alcohol consumption; Alcohol may make it easier to fall asleep but after the effects wear off, you may find it harder to sleep.

Reduce other in bed activities to build a link in your mind between sleep and being in bed, it’s best to only use your bed only for sleep with sex being the one exception.

Dim your lights, get off your electronics at least 30 to 60 minutes before bed and keep your night routine consistent; putting on your pyjamas, brushing your teeth or stretching can reinforce your mind that it is bedtime.

Lavender oil
Lavender oil
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Calming scents, such as lavender may induce a calmer state of mind and help cultivate a positive space for sleep.

Ensure your environment is warm and cosy, not too cold or too hot as the thermal environment is one of the most important factors that can affect human sleep. 

If it doesn't work, wear socks in bed to increase blood flow to the feet and avoid heat loss through the skin.

This helps lower core body temperature. In turn, this helps a person get to sleep faster.

Avoid tossing and turning, the sleep foundation recommends that if you cannot fall asleep, wake up, stretch or read something calming before trying to fall asleep again, that way, you will have a healthy mental connection between being in bed and actually sleeping.

Having a clean and comfortable pillow and mattress as comfort and pain-free sleep is essential.

It is important to note that sleep hygiene varies from person to person and testing out different adjustments can help you find what works for you.

Edited by D Tarus