Sleep well and wake up rested – what sounds so simple sometimes doesn’t work so well. The reason could be poor sleep hygiene. Our sleep specialists have a few tips on how to find restful sleep and explain what constitutes good sleep hygiene.
Make yourself comfortable
Create a sleeping environment in which you feel completely comfortable: a comfortable bed, a good mattress, a comfortable lying position and the right sleeping temperature – not too warm and not too cold. A good guideline is a temperature of around 18 degrees. If you feel uncomfortable, freeze, get cold feet or sweat, you should adjust sleeping clothes, blankets or the room temperature. Likewise, tight sleeping clothes can hinder sleep and cause sleepless nights.
Discover The Dark Side Of The Night
Bright light with an intensity of 5,000 to 10,000 lux is quite good for the body. We release serotonin, which has an activating and antidepressant function. The downside is that right light shortens the duration of sleep because serotonin suppresses melatonin. When the sun comes out early in the morning, a dark curtain or sleeping mask could extend our sleep.
Put Your Smartphone In Night Mode
Check your emails and the latest news before going to sleep? Better not. The light from smartphones and tablets is just as obstructive as daylight. The high proportion of blue light in the displays inhibits the production of melatonin in the brain. That is why it is better to switch off cell phones in the evening. According to experts, newer smartphones offer a compromise for those who cannot do without the smartphone in bed. The night mode reduces the activating, short-wave blue light between 450 and 480 nanometers, so that melatonin production is less inhibited.
Avoid Noise Before Sleeping
We need rest to sleep. And that is disturbed by noise, for example when the bedroom is on a busy street. Then it’s time to close the window or use earplugs to reduce the noise level. Disturbing activities before bed can also be counterproductive. Sports activities, thrilling computer games or exciting films raise the pulse, blood pressure and breathing rate – and prevent us from calming down. It can even cause stress and your thoughts may still revolve around the PC game for a long time while you are already in bed and should be asleep. It is essential to avoid this. Rather rely on autogenic training or read a book.
Create A Bedtime Ritual
If you have difficulty getting to rest in the evening, you can put your body into sleep mode with a regular bedtime ritual. These can be regular bedtime times, relaxation exercises or a cup of calming hop tea. Some people feel comfortable with valerian products, which are freely available in pharmacies, among other things. The sleep doctor, however, advises against sleeping pills as far as possible. These could quickly become addictive, within a few weeks. Anyone who takes sleeping pills for a long period of five to ten years often takes just as long to get away from them. Suddenly stopping sleeping pills is difficult in the case of addiction, because withdrawal symptoms occur immediately. In addition, sleeping pills suppress the important REM sleep phase.