01 Dec How to Get the Best Night’s Sleep Ever
About 60 million Americans suffer from sleep disorders every year. And the rest of us? We are stressed and struggling to get a good night’s sleep from time to time, too. When you’re not in your own home, the situation gets even worse. Although we can’t make sure the Sandman arrives at exactly 9:45 every night, we can give you some tips for the best night’s sleep you’ve ever had.
—Winter of discontent
We don’t know about you, but some of us feel extremely uncomfortable with our accommodations during the holidays. Maybe you’re used to a firmer mattress than your MIL offered you, but you’re forced to stay there (without complaining!) until New Year’s. Don’t be so afraid to ask for a new room if you’re hanging around longer than just a couple days. You’ll be better equipped to deal with troublesome family members if you’ve had proper rest. Also, make a few accommodations for yourself that remind you of home–bring a special blanket, nightlight, picture, your own pillowcases…whatever it takes.
—Turn it down
Most of us are cranking the heat up way too high in the winter. In fact, researchers have found that 65 degrees is ideal for comfortable sleep. Although we’ve been told that 70-72 strikes the perfect balance for comfort and economy, the fact of the matter is, we’re just too toasty at that temperature for optimal sleep.
—Don’t work where you sleep
If you work from the comfort of your bed, you’re more likely to associate your pillow with your desk, which negatively impacts your sleep. One of the average American’s leading causes of insomnia is thinking about work when they’re trying to drift off, so doesn’t it make sense to relegate those activities to another room? In fact, maybe you should ditch the laptop: Sleep scientists suggest that you avoid screens for two hours before your bedtime. Although some of you fall asleep on the couch watching TV, too many of you are unable to stay asleep that way.
—Keep noise to a minimum
If you’re in a hotel, ask the front desk to hold all of your calls. Also pay attention to where your room is located: Your best bet for a quiet night is getting a room in the middle of the hallway. If that’s not enough noise control for you, invest in some earplugs. Still can’t sleep? A white noise machine might do the trick; some of us nearly nodded off at work when people brought them into our office!
—Setting the mood for sleep
Environment plays a huge role in how well you sleep. Keeping the sheets clean and the bed made helped 3/4 of the people who were tossing and turning to sleep peacefully through the night. Room cleanliness influences these patterns, too. According to the National Sleep Foundation, those with clean rooms are 19% more likely to sleep well for eight hours.
Sorry, but the jury’s still out on the positive effects of booze on insomnia. If you’ve noticed that it’s helped in the past, limit to just one drink before bedtime. Certain essential oils (like lavender and sandalwood), melatonin, sleepytime tea, and certain sleep-inducing vitamins/minerals (calcium, magnesium, etc.) can help you sleep. Best of luck!
Get Some Sleep!