Sleep is an essential part of our daily routine, during which our body and mind can be rejuvenated. Without sufficient sleep, our mind would slow down, and the body’s immune system could get compromised.
In the world of chaos and disasters, sometimes a good night’s sleep is hard to get. What’s worse, the more anxious we feel about this, the more severe our sleep problems will be.
What affects our sleep?
Let's try to understand the question first: What affects our sleep?
Many things could do that, including:
We have light-sensitive cells in the retina of our eyes. These cells tell the brain whether it is daytime or nighttime, and our internal clock is set accordingly. If we’re exposed to light in the late evening, our internal clock could get delayed and it makes us prefer later sleep times.
Stress, anxiety, and other medical conditions
Stress and anxiety often make it difficult to fall asleep. Most commonly, we find ourselves lying in bed thinking about our daytime concerns after a stressful day. And even if we fall asleep, sleep tends to be light and there are episodes of awakenings. Some scientists say this is likely because our bodies are programmed to respond to stressful and potentially dangerous situations by waking up.
Caffeine and other substances
Caffeine affects both the quantity and quality of sleep. So do substance like alcohol, nicotine, and certain medications such as beta-blockers and antidepressants.
How to Get Better Sleep?
Create an ideal sleep environment
We’ve already noted that too much light at night can delay our internal clock. To minimize this effect, room-darkening shades can be used. A dark and quiet bedroom is ideal.
Go to bed and get up at the same time every day
Even at the weekends, try to limit the difference to about one hour. This helps our body keep the internal clock on track.
Avoid things that make it hard for you to sleep
These include caffeine, nicotine, etc..
Try to relax
This may sound easier said than done, but plenty of things may help, and we just need to do whatever works for us. For instance, listen to light music. If light music relaxes you, just listen to your favorite before sleep. And don’t forget to keep the volume low.