Saturday, December 16

10 Sneaky Saboteurs That Make Sleep So Elusive

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It seems so simple. Sleep. If only! Discover the changes you can make to your habits–and your habitat–that will turn you into an overnight success.

1. A disturbing story on the internet or a problem that lands in your inbox can set your mind running. Plus, lights stimulate your brain. Shut down to get some shut-eye.

2. Sharing a bed with a partner makes women sleep less soundly, according to a recent study. If your guy snores, convince him to see a sleep specialist–most snoring can be treated.

3. If a stuffy nose is keeping you up at night, you may have a dust mite allergy. Monthly pillow washings (not just the cases) will keep dust mite allergens to a minimum.

4. Knowing how late it is won’t help you sleep–au contraire: Worrying that you’re not getting enough sleep only gets your adrenaline pumping. Turn your clock around so it’s not facing you.

5. Major munching before bed keeps your body busy digesting and less interested in settling down. Try a small snack instead: a bowl of cereal with skim milk.

6. Drinking wine may help you fall asleep, but indulging in too much alcohol before bedtime will also likely lead to a bad nights sleep and/or an early morning awakening.

7. People exposed to cell phone radiation before bedtime took longer to reach deep sleep and spent less time in deep sleep and spent less time in deep sleep overall, according to a new study.

8. Mattresses wear out–usually in about 10 years–and stop providing your body the support it needs. The result: Deep sleep may decrease by up to 20 percent.

9. Have a TV in your bedroom? Not a good idea. TV’s intense light stimulates your brain. Turn off the tube an hour before bed and pick up a book instead.

10. A bedroom that’s too warm makes it hard for your body temperature to drop, an important element to getting good sleep. Keep the thermostat at about 68 degrees.

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