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An estimated 164 Americans have trouble sleeping at least once a week. Getting a good night sleep is crucial to thrive but is often hard to achieve. It’s no wonder that there is an entire week dedicated to sleep. The National Sleep Foundation has declared March 10-16th as National Sleep Awareness Week.
Why Sleep Is Important
- 65% of Americans think sleep contributes to next day effectiveness
- Only 10% of people prioritize it over other aspects of daily living
- Sleep impacts your mental health as well as your physical well being and safety
- When you are sleeping, you are forming new pathways to help you learn and remember information
- Sleep deficiency also has been linked to depression, suicide, and risk-taking behavior.
- A good night sleep improves learning ability
- Sleep aids in healing and repair of your heart and blood vessels.
- Ongoing sleep deficiency is linked to an increased risk of heart disease, kidney disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and stroke.
- Lack of sleep also may lead to microsleep. Microsleep refers to brief moments of sleep that occur when you’re normally awake.
Holistic Sleep Tips
- Meditation is a great way to relax your mind and ease into sleep. I recommend the free Insight App available on Android and Apple. Their Yoga Nidra options are highly effective
- Use a journal for brain dumping so your mind is not racing while you are trying to fall asleep.
- Practice a gentle yoga routine prior to bed. There are several great videos on YouTube as well as subscription services like Grokker.
- No caffeine after lunch. Caffeine stays in your system for at least 6 hours and some people are more sensitive than others.
- Stick to a sleep schedule even during the weekend. And avoid naps unless they are part of your schedule.
- Skip the night cap. I am sorry to report that alcohol disrupts your sleep. I am pained at the thought also.
- Avoid large meals right before bed.
- Avoid liquids before you hit the sheets so you don’t have to wake up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom
- Keep it cool and dark. A dark and cool room is ideal for falling and staying asleep
- Hit the gym in the morning but help relax the muscles at night.
Nothing calms and soothes a body like a nice warm bath at the end of the day. Include the Muscle Ease Bath Salt to reduce achy muscles for a more restful and comfortable night sleep. In addition, these amazing salts include sleep inducing aromatherapy. The Lavender Bath Bombs a relaxing way to end the day and prepare for a good night’s sleep
- Increase bright and natural light during the day to keep your circadian rhythm healthy.
- Find the right pillow
- Create a nighttime routine, that you look forward to. Mine starts long before I hit the pillow by prepping my bedroom with a few sleep aids. Nighttime Pillow Mist and the Quiet Night Wellness Balm – prepares the mind and body for a restful night. Sleep is a behavior and we can teach our body to sleep with routines. The Nighttime Pillow Mist and wellness balm are great signals to let the mind know it is time to close it down. Lighting a candle to your routine can also help set the stage for a good sleep.
- Avoid adding chemicals and synthetic fragrances to your routine.
- Power down as the glow from your cell phone, tablet, or digital clock can hurt your sleep.
No matter which tip resonates with you, just realize how important sleep is to your self care. The National Sleep Foundation has a bedtime calculator to help determine just how much sleep your body needs.