Top 10 Tips for Better Sleep

I know many moms really struggle with getting a good night’s sleep – and often it’s not even the usual suspects (aka your kids).

After years of broken sleep, you finally get them all sleeping through the night (this happens eventually right??) and then you may find that your own body no longer knows how to switch off and actually rest!

There is nothing better than a night of deep, restful sleep to restore your body and mind. Sleep is a vitally important aspect of our lives that often impacts on every other part. Restless sleep is often caused by ignoring signals sent by our body and mind. When seeking restorative sleep, it is important to pay attention to your body’s signals, as well as any emotional or mental unease. The body goes through vital processes whilst sleeping, so it is important to make sure that you ensure a full night’s rest.

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The Benefits of Restorative Sleep are numerous and better sleep will certainly result in better skin too! Skin care products are most effective at night, as they are absorbed over a longer period of time. During the night, your body restores and rejuvenates. Skin cells regenerate and facial muscles are able to relax, which reduces the signs of lines and wrinkles. A good night’s sleep also allows your body to release human growth hormones which aid in collagen production, resulting in a radiant complexion. The rise in growth hormones during restorative sleep allows damaged cells to be repaired: without it, damaged cells accumulate and skin ages rapidly. This is why it’s always recommended to get a best rated bed so that you get a great night’s sleep. A lack of sleep will further result in poor water balance, which leads to puffy, tired eyes, dark circles and dry skin.

In an effort to encourage good sleeping habits and more restful sleep Africology have put together their

 

Top 10 Tips for Better Sleep

 

1. Stick to a sleeping schedule
Establishing a bedtime and wake up time is important in regulating your body clock. By creating a bedtime routine, you create habits that help you fall asleep faster. These times should also be repeated over weekends in order to help you fall asleep and stay asleep for the night.

 

2. Practice a relaxing bedtime ritual.
Relaxing bedtime rituals include reading a book or magazine, taking a hot bath or listening to soft music. Turning off your television and computer will increase your  chances of peaceful sleep as watching TV stimulates the mind, while blue light from phones and monitors disrupts the release of sleep hormones. Practicing relaxing exercises or listening to music will allow your body to rest. Spraying the Africology Pillow and Linen spray in the room before bedtime is another lovely gentle and effective bedtime routine. It contains lavender, which has been scientifically proven to induce sleepiness.

 

3. Avoid afternoon naps
Napping makes it harder to fall asleep at night. If napping is essential, try limiting this to 20 minutes or less. Take naps early in the day in order to avoid disturbing your body clock, as taking naps within 8 hours of your bedtime routine can sabotage a good night’s rest. An afternoon nap can also be substituted with a short walk or a glass of cold water.

4. Reduce your caffeine intake

Most people rely on a cup of coffee to start their day. However, reduce the amount of caffeine after 12 in order to ensure a good night’s sleep. Caffeine interferes with the deeper stages of sleep, so having coffee within eight hours of bed time can make it difficult to fall or stay asleep. Remember that some teas contain caffeine as well. Reach for water, rooibos or chamomile tea instead to induce as state of calmness.

 

5. Exercise at the correct time
Regular exercise has been shown to improve sleep quality; however heavy exercise close to your scheduled bedtime can prevent a restful sleep. The energy received post-workout can keep you awake, so try to avoid exercising 3 – 4 hours before bedtime. Yoga has ideal mind/body exercises which can be done before bedtime.

 

6. Lower the lights
Turn your house into a sleep haven and avoid bright lights. Dimming the lights around the house 2-3 hours before your scheduled bedtime will signal your brain to produce serotonin, the hormone that induces sleep. Putting work, possible conflict and complicated decisions aside 2-3 hours before bedtime will result in a better sleep as it takes time for your body to fully relax from the stresses of the day. Even a tiny bit of light in your room can affect the level of sleep you reach so you might like to consider using a sleep mask. Africology has a sleep pillow that is filled with a variety of beans and lavender, this eye pillow will block out light thereby allowing you to reach a state of maximum relaxation.

 

7. Neutralise noise
The ideal situation for sleep is a noise-free environment. Reducing the level of noise in your house before your scheduled bedtime will allow for your body to prepare for sleep. Turn off the radio and TV to reduce noise levels. Certain noises such as trains, traffic or a snoring partner are out of our control, but it is best to mask these sounds with soothing background sounds such as a fan, wave machine or a white noise generator. There are a number of mobile apps that produce white noise that can assist with sleep. Using earplugs can mask uncontrollable sounds.

 

8. Relaxing techniques for a better sleep
Relaxation techniques are a great way to wind down, calm the mind and prepare you for sleep. Techniques include deep breathing, meditation and visualising a peaceful, restful sleep. If you find it hard to fall asleep, try a relaxation technique or use Africology Sleep Gel to induce a state of relaxation, by massaging the temples with this lavender-infused gel, one is able to ease tension!

 

9. Don’t watch the clock
When struggling to fall asleep we tend to look at our clocks or phones to see the time. This is not advised when trying to fall asleep as this often leads to stress and frustration. If you are struggling to fall asleep for longer than 20 minutes, you should rather get out of bed and take part in a restful activity such as reading or listening to music. When your eyelids are drooping and you feel ready to sleep, return to bed.

 

10. Balance fluid and food intake
Drinking plenty of liquid before bedtime will result in waking up to go to the bathroom. Avoid spicy meals just before your bedtime as this could cause heartburn and may interfere with your sleep. If hunger sets in during the evening, it is beneficial to eat snacks that induce sleep such as carbohydrates as this will prepare your body for rest. Avoid big, heavy meals that require more than an hour to digest.

 

I hope these tips help you to get a great night’s rest tonight! Sleep well!

 

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Kathryn Rossiter

Kathryn is a South African lifestyle blogger and mom of 2 who has been blogging daily for almost 7 years! She writes about travel, health, beauty, fashion, decor and family... but not food (unless it's food she's eaten made by someone else) as she is a hopeless cook. She only wakes up early for 2 things... a red-eye flight to somewhere exotic and early morning game drives. She has just finished an extensive home renovation and would prefer to never see another box again. She's never met a chocolate or glass of bubbles that she didn't like!

1 Comment
  1. thanks for the tips for a better night sleep ,please add more for us to benefit from that , as for one I struggle to get goodnight sleep and i dont know whats the problem with me because im not stressed ,nothing is troubling me . So please add more points for me to benefit .

    Thanks

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