Do you remember your last restless night? Even a far too short night? Then you’d know how important good and restful sleep is. Unfortunately, few people pay attention to their sleep hygiene.
This is one of the reasons why studies show that many people suffer from lack of sleep. Especially for those suffering from sleep disorders. Sleep hygiene is the habits and circumstances that promote healthy sleep.
Perhaps you’ve already read this term in various magazines. You may have even tried one or two tips without success.
You shouldn’t expect any miracles from the individual tips alone. But, compliance with a combination of individual rules helps sleep better and restful.
Check whether the rules and tips you have applied to yourself influence your sleep.
It is necessary to consistently adhere to these rules for at least one month. Even better, for you to note the effects in a sleep diary if possible.
But, don’t pay too much attention to occasional sleep disorders. Otherwise, you will lose your impartial attitude towards sleep.
Most of the time you already know the causes. Give yourself some time to sleep passively and don’t try to fall asleep “by force”.
Sleep Hygiene: How to Improve it? Everything You Need to Know
- 1 What is Sleep Hygiene?
- 2 Does a Perfect Sleep Hygiene Exists?
- 3 Good vs. Poor Sleep Hygiene:
- 4 19 Sleep Hygiene Tips for a Better Sleep:
- 5 Sleep Hygiene for Kids: What Matters
- 6 Sleep Hygiene for Depression: An Important Factor
- 7 Sleep Hygiene for Shift Workers
- 8 Natural Sleep Aids for Sleep Hygiene
- 9 Summary and Key Takeaways
- 10 Conclusion
- 11 Sleep Hygiene FAQs
What is Sleep Hygiene?
Sleep hygiene advises you to induce a good night’s sleep simply and effectively. It’s good because you can sleep deeper, fall asleep faster and sleep through better.
Sleep hygiene is not primarily about hygiene in the sense of cleanliness. As it’s practised in hospitals, e.g., to avoid infection. So to practice better sleep hygiene. It doesn’t mean tidying up your bedroom, freshening up the bed — Although that helps as well, of course.
Sleep hygiene describes all conditions, behaviour and measures. Which promote a person’s healthy and uninterrupted sleep. When I speak of sleep hygiene, I want you to specifically create the conditions for a good night’s sleep. Strong sleep hygiene aims to combat sleep disorders and problems with falling and staying asleep.
This is all without the help of sleeping pills or other medication. Conventional sleeping pills contain common substances like benzodiazepines. Which disrupt the natural production of the sleep hormone, melatonin in the long-term.
It involves the risk of habituation and frequently leads to increased morning tiredness. It is also known as a hangover. Anyone who suffers from insomnia, should therefore not instantly take sleeping pills. Especially in the wake of the corona pandemic.
I don’t have any disorders, will Sleep Hygiene work for me?
Sleep hygiene is not only aimed at people with sleep disorders. But, it allows everyone to adapt their behaviour towards a sound sleep. Many aspects of sleep hygiene appear trivial when viewed individually. But taken collectively, they can significantly improve the quality of night sleep.
Sleep hygiene helps people to help themselves in improving their sleeping situation. The tried and tested methods aim to level off the natural sleep-wake cycle. As well as, to abandon negative behavior patterns for sleep and to learn positive ones.
It’s important to have 3-4 weeks of patience. After only one night you probably won’t be able to tell any differences. To achieve this, you need to optimize your environment and habits. But, also by coupling a better bed-to-sleep relationship. The rules of sleep hygiene support you permanently in maintaining a sleep-promoting lifestyle.
Does a Perfect Sleep Hygiene Exists?
It starts with the number of hours each person should sleep at night. For a long time, a vast majority considered eight hours to be optimal. Today, a few only need four hours of sleep, other extreme cases are full twelve hours – anything in between is possible.
In reality, too, it is seldom possible to combine all aspects of sleep hygiene with everyday life. To implement sleep hygiene, it is important to adapt the tips and rules to your circumstances.
Everyone knows it from time to time: the living conditions do not provide enough time for sleep. At the same time, the land of dreams does not get along without interruption. If you feel unrested or want to improve your life through better sleep, the rules of sleep hygiene will help you.
Good vs. Poor Sleep Hygiene:
Good sleep hygiene will help you sleep faster, deeper, and better. Poor ones, on the other hand, prevent you from doing so. You can form them from innumerable triggers.
Good Sleep Hygiene
Good sleep hygiene is not only useful when disturbed sleep is already there. But, it also helps you not to let it arise in the first place.
Besides, it is a valuable tool for promoting optimization and combating problems. Deep and uninterrupted sleep can increase your overall quality of life. Replace the old ones with new, healthy sleeping habits.
Poor Sleep Hygiene
Poor sleep hygiene can stem from supposedly harmless habits such as watching TV in bed. Risk factors such as shift work, stress or physical causes can also contribute.
Failure to sleep at night often leads to taking measures during the day to make up for it. This can result in excessive consumption of caffeine, to focus on work. While consuming alcohol to help you fall asleep later that night.
This results in irregular sleeping times, the biorhythm (also known as “Circadian Rhythm”) changes and restlessness during bedtime remains. The vicious circle of poor sleep hygiene has begun. The poor sleep behavior can persist even after you’ve eliminated the contributing factors.
Because once you learn bad habits, they stay with you. The wrong behavior around sleep has now opened the gates to new problems. The consequences of lack of sleep due to poor sleep hygiene are complex and serious. The only way out is to replace harmful habits with healthy ones.
19 Sleep Hygiene Tips for a Better Sleep:
You can use effective methods at any time of the day to help yourself to stay long and undisturbed in the land of dreams. Give your sleep a new coat of paint today!
In The Evening Before Going To Bed
Good sleep begins in the early evening. Keep an eye on the last 2-3 hours of your day and follow sleep hygiene:
01. Get Rid of Worrisome Thoughts
Between your everyday life and going to bed, you should set up a “buffer zone”. You should finish all the exhausting discussions, Problem-solving and plan for the next day beforehand.
At least 1 to 2 hours before bedtime, you should switch yourself off and disengage. At this time, focus on only having pleasant conversations and some light reading. It is often very helpful to write down unsolvable problems and anything that makes you brood.
You don’t need to worry about forgetting anything. If you think it, write it down! Everything that could occupy you before you go to sleep. Make a daily plan for tomorrow or make a to-do list with all the things that are still in your head.
You can put an end to negative thoughts in writing, for example by writing in a diary before going to bed. If the diary is too much, cards or individual sheets of paper for every problem have proven their worth. You can then easily add additions.
Often you can think of possible solutions that you can then put down in writing. For very tough cases, notes and pencils on the side of the bed have also proven themselves quite useful. A quick thought as a keyword, but no more than that. You don’t want to excite yourself and be up writing for hours.
02. Dim Your Light Sources
The light that surrounds us has a decisive influence on whether we get tired or not. This is due to the so-called sleep hormone melatonin.
The release of which controls our day-night rhythm. If it gets dark in the evening, the melatonin level rises and we get tired. When it gets light again in the morning, the melatonin level drops. Then the release of the stress hormone cortisol increases and we wake up.
Since we use a lot of artificial light today. It disturbs the increase in melatonin levels every evening. Whether light interferes with melatonin production depends on the strength. And often also on the colour spectrum of the light.
Particularly, in the evening, you should avoid light with a brightness of more than 5000 lux and artificial light with a high blue component.
Therefore, It helps to use warm and weak bulbs in the bedroom. It’s also recommended to use a dimmer with which the brightness can be individually regulated.
In the morning, curtains help to block out the usually very bright sunlight. Light with a high proportion of blue is mainly emitted by the screens of electronic devices.
Smartphones, tablets, laptops or televisions have no place in the bedroom. If you can’t take your cell phone out of your evening routine. You should at least activate night mode – then the screen emits less blue light
You can take advantage of the opportunity and go on dopamine fast. This gives you more time to use other methods that provide more relaxation.
03. Exercise Before Bedtime
It can take several hours for the body to shut down again after hard training. Studies show contradicting results on the effect of exercise in the evening on sleep. This is because a combination of different factors influences it.
On one hand, it matters whether you are well trained and how quickly you can return to sleep mode after exercising.
On the other, you have to be careful about which meal you eat after exercise and thus shortly before sleep.
Regular physical exercise promotes sleep. A lack of physical exercise can lead to sleep disorders (especially in older people). But, physical overexertion in insufficient time before bed disturbs sleep.
Remember that vigorous physical exertion stimulates our so-called “sympathetic nervous system”. Similar to caffeine and nicotine. It often takes several hours for this negative influence to subside. So, avoid high-intensity exercise such as HIIT at a very late hour.
You can still reconcile sport and sleep hygiene if you rely on light cardio. Moderate exercise in the evening undoubtedly has a positive effect on sleep quality.
04. Go for a Walk
If you don’t want to slip into jogging gear in the evening, you can go for a walk. It also serves as a sleep-inducing purpose.
Since it helps you free yourself from thoughts and brings more activity into the day. This is important to create a balance between stress and rest.
05. Develop Daily Rituals
During the day, most people’s heads run at full speed. Unfortunately, you can’t simply stop the carousel of thoughts with an emergency brake. But has to be carefully throttled and that takes time.
So it is advisable to prepare yourself mentally before you go to bed and to end the day.
A relaxing evening routine makes it easier for you to get used to sleeping in a short time. And that even if the circumstances are not on your side.
This can happen on vacation, in a new sleeping environment as well as on a stressful day. This can be the likes of a light exercise, a walk or a diary. It could also include taking a relaxing bath, brewing your favorite tea or reading a simple book.
Everyone has to find out for themselves what that looks like in detail. You know yourself best and are most likely to assess what is calming or upsetting you. Once you find an adequate rest routine, try to continue it.
The longer you stick with your resting routine, the more effective it becomes. Give your body time to slow down and get into the mood for sleep. Let the day end in peace.
06. Avoid Stimulants
Alcohol and coffee shouldn’t be on your drinks list in the evening if you want to do something good for your sleep. The cigarette is also part of it.
Caffeine is taboo before bed because it stimulates brain activity. It is even better to reduce caffeine altogether. Since it can not only harm deep sleep but also on the quality of sleep.
Alcohol and nicotine are also similar in that sense. While alcohol, unlike nicotine, can help you fall asleep. Both substances significantly reduce the quality of your sleep.
Thrilling computer games or horror films are also a big no-no in the evening. Especially if you’re already suffering from some sort of sleep disorder. This kind of media is significantly stimulating. It is because they raise the pulse, blood pressure and breathing rate – and prevent us from calming down.
It can even cause stress and anxiety. And your thoughts may still revolve around the PC game for a long time while you are already in bed. So for a night of healthy sleep, you need to avoid this.
07. Choose the Right Meal
Since your digestion, like many other functions, shuts down during sleep, it is better not to burden it with a large meal. That means to forego lush cravings in the evening to be able to sleep more undisturbed.
Consume foods such as milk, bananas and chocolate as they contain L-tryptophan. Which plays a role in sleep regulation in the brain. In particular, you should avoid foods that are difficult to digest, such as raw vegetables and whole-grain products.
Not eating long before night can help you feel even lighter in your stomach. But, going to bed hungry also triggers insomnia in some people. If you still want to eat something and it’s late.
Choose an easily digestible meal, preferably with a portion of protein.
If you did sport in the evening or late afternoon, it is even advisable to get used to it. While protein has no negative effect on sleep. Combined with a workout, leads to increased growth-stimulating processes overnight. This leads to better muscle building.
08. Go for the Same Bedtime
If you have the same times for going to bed and getting up every day, you create a constant rhythm. Like the evening routine, this helps you sleep faster when the time comes.
Humans are creatures of habit: in almost all areas of life, we gradually adopt routines. This avoids stress and helps us to get better. Regular waking and sleeping times are part of most sleep hygiene rules and also make sense.
The more continuously we go to bed and get up again, the easier it is for us to fall asleep. Which makes it even easier for us to get out of bed in the morning.
In terms of proper sleep hygiene, it is therefore often advisable to go to bed and get up at the same time every day, both during the week and on the weekend.
However, do not force yourself to bed if you are not tired at the scheduled hour. Instead, rely more on an unchanged get-up time. This way you will achieve faster that your rhythm levels off by itself. If you haven’t slept much due to late bedtime, you will feel ready for sleep earlier the next day.
09. Find the Best Hours for You
A large-scale study determines, the best sleep duration is 7 hours, but deviations are possible. Individual factors such as younger age or exercise increase the need for sleep.
For example, people who do a lot of sport find 9 hours to be the optimal time. The best time to fall asleep and get up is also subject to personal considerations.
Although, our internal clock and the relationship between light and darkness dictate a certain sleep time. Hence, this pattern is not the same for everyone.
Use the 7-9 hour framework for your sleep planning and keep an eye on your own need for relaxation.
While You Sleep
You started the evening well to get to the dreamland quickly and ideally to stay in it.
To increase the effect, sleep hygiene tips will also help you shortly before and during sleep:
10. Stand Up
Don’t look at the clock and stand up. Leave the room as soon as you feel unable to sleep. You don’t have to toss and turn for a long time. This not only brings frustration but also messes your body.
Because forcing sleep doesn’t work. If you spend 15-20 minutes awake while falling asleep or at night, you can devote yourself to another activity first. You can resume your plan to sleep when you feel tired enough.
11. Practice Mindfulness Instead of Brooding
Make a habit of focusing on the moment rather than thinking about worries and fears. This way you won’t keep yourself unnecessarily sleepless. You can only repeat brooding over problems in your mind, but you can’t solve them and try to sleep at the same time. Because often a negative mood takes on you and also puts a strain on your sleep.
If you wake up at night or are about to fall asleep, you can grasp the moment using the methods of mindfulness. Focus on the here and now, feel your breathing and feel your senses. After getting up, you should expose yourself to daylight for about half an hour if possible.
Even on a gray, overcast day, this helps to stabilize the sleep-wake rhythm. A bright, friendly bathroom will also help you in the morning. A “light shower” is recommended for those who suffer from so-called winter depression.
Sleep disturbances, tiredness and seasonal depression should be reduced. Natural bright light with a strength of 5,000 to 10,000 lux is quite good for the body. We release serotonin, which has an activating and antidepressant function.
The downside, bright light shortens the duration of sleep because serotonin suppresses melatonin. When the sun comes out early in the morning, a dark curtain or sleeping mask could extend your sleep.
12. Create a Neutral Room
Warm and subtle colors have a calming effect and are helpful for bedroom furnishings. Having a neutral room takes you spiritually even further away from your problems.
This is good because they have no place in your mind before going to bed. Before going to sleep, remove anything that might make you brood or restless.
This can be unfinished work in the form of files. But bright wall colors or glowing symbols on electronic devices can also bother you. Make your room neutral and the atmosphere calm.
13. Optimize the Sleeping Environment
An optimized sleeping environment not only helps you fall asleep but stay asleep as well. A good sleeping environment includes pleasant coolness, darkness and rest.
Nothing speaks against a cozy living room. But the bedroom should be the place with the highest comfort factor in the apartment or house. Clutter, of any sort, should be avoided. Such as clothes that are lying around, usually creates an inner restlessness.
Cleanliness is just as important. Make the bed fresh more often because that also increases well-being. Plants in the bedroom can not only create a pleasant atmosphere but can even improve air quality.
Pajamas and bed linen should be comfortable and made of textiles that are comfortable on the skin. Don’t wrap yourself up too warm. Because the optimal room temperature in sleep hygiene is below the usual.
To keep the bedroom cooler, you can tilt a window or ventilate it well beforehand. 6-18 degrees celsius is recommended, depending on the duvet and sleeping clothes. Both should be light and not restrictive.
The light that prevents your sleep hormones from working should be avoided. Along with the noise that could wake you up. If snoring bedfellows or traffic noise still disturbs you. You can achieve complete light and noise shielding with earplugs and a sleeping mask.
The Day After
The way you organize the time of day also affects your sleep.
To wake up fresh and lively the next morning, you can apply the following sleep hygiene rules throughout the day:
14. Check for Comfort Criteria
Did you feel well last night? Is the mattress comfortable enough for you? Do you feel comfortable resting your head on your pillow?
Does the slatted frame fulfil its purpose the way you want it? Won’t you get too warm or too cold with your current bed set?
Take enough time and check whether the comfort of your bed still has some catching up to do.
15. Banish Everything but Sleep
Your bedroom is not a living room. There should be no work, no food and no argument in your bedroom. The bed must be a place of rest and should not serve as an extended living room or study.
This means that all activities that have nothing to do with sleeping or relaxation should completely be banned from the bedroom, or at least from the bed – with the only exception of sexual activities.
Sexual activity is of course allowed and even encouraged because it has a calming after-effect and promotes your recovery.
This applies equally to professional and leisure matters. This rule should be strictly adhered to. Even a very short e-mail to the boss, an episode of your favorite series or a chapter of the current reading must be avoided.
The background is that we associate certain emotions and thoughts with certain places. The bed should be consistently anchored in the head as a place of relaxation.
In this way, the association between bed and sleep is strengthened.
16. Don’t Take a Nap
Avoid having a power nap at lunchtime unless you really need it.
This is better for your nightly sleep because the afternoon nap can get in the way of your plan to find a steady sleep rhythm.
Should you still have a power nap, limit it to a maximum of 20 minutes.
17. Do Some Exercise
Sport is very important in sleep hygiene because it promotes good sleep. And that is scientifically proven. With regular exercise, you can enjoy a shorter time to fall asleep, fewer interruptions, and deeper sleep.
Anyone who is physically able to do so can use sport and exercise as a natural sleep aid. Those who work a lot with their heads and little with their hands every day are particularly likely to be physically underutilized.
If there is no daily commute to work due to the Corona-related work-from-home arrangement, compensation is needed. A long walk can help and is always recommended, even in the evening.
Intensive sport, on the other hand, should be used with caution. Because it releases the stress hormone cortisol, which normally drives us when we get up in the morning.
With the right balance, however, you can benefit from the best natural sleep aid ever: physical exhaustion.
18. Manage Your Stress
Finding a good balance between stress and relief is quite important. This is because exposure to physical or emotional stress is a very common cause of disturbed sleep.
Stress and livelihood worries are certainly a very big problem in today’s world. But if you are not getting a good night’s sleep, these problems become much worse.
By having a lot of worries and problems on your mind, your stress hormone builds up. And with too much of cortisol, it is harder to fall asleep at night. Plus, the quality of sleep also negatively suffers.
Yoga and meditation are one of the best methods of fighting stress. In general, any kind of relaxation exercises can help. Conversations with trusted close friends can also help to alleviate stress and anxiety.
Try to include periods of rest during the day. That way you can make sure that too much tension doesn’t build up. Because it is not ideal to avoid stress completely. But to counteract recovery with the necessary dose of sleep and rest. Try keeping a healthy balance maintained.
19. Practice Relaxation
You can use relaxation techniques to not only discharge yourself throughout the day but also before bed to calm down further.
With the likes of autogenic training, yoga, meditation and progressive muscle relaxation you can draw new strength through rejuvenation.
Because if you are charged all the time, you will not only sleep worse in the evening but also perform less during the day. The more you challenge yourself, the more you have to recover.
Sleep Hygiene for Kids: What Matters
Disturbed sleep among children is common and should not be taken lightly. That’s because poor sleep interferes with their cognitive performance and general development.
As a result, not only typical symptoms of lack of sleep but also behavioral problems, hyperactivity and school problems are to be found. Letting children learn a healthy sleep routine is therefore essential.
Sleep hygiene helps both to whip up your sleep and to develop healthy habits overall. This includes, for example, exercise and a reduction in cell phone use, which harms sleep and life in adolescents.
Especially at a young age, when the routines are not yet so well established, new habits can be taught more easily. The rules of sleep hygiene can be adapted to adolescents as well as adults.
In the case of children, it is also advisable to ensure that they are never sent to bed as a punishment.
As a result, the bed is no longer associated with restful sleep, but with punishment and negative feelings. Since you have a special role model function as a parent, you should work on the new habits together with the child.
Sleep Hygiene for Depression: An Important Factor
Sleep disorders are a very common phenomenon that can be observed in connection with depression. They can be both a trigger and a side effect.
To avoid a negative interaction and to improve the depressed state, it is fundamentally important to work on the quality of sleep.
Learning sleep hygiene has proven to be an effective treatment method in psychotherapy. In therapy for depression, the recording of sleep problems is the same as it is known from sleep laboratories for sleep disorders.
First, a sleep log is created, it can be kept in the form of a sleep diary. Recognizing the problem by writing it down is the first step in healing. The deficiencies in good sleep behavior are replaced during therapy by the rules of sleep hygiene.
Keeping a sleep log can help everyone to better recognize the weak points in their habits and to exchange them for sleep-inducing ones. Nonetheless, depression is a serious condition and needs to be handled professionally.
If the DIY approach doesn’t produce results, then see a doctor or psychotherapist.
Sleep Hygiene for Shift Workers
Health insurances blame the current working conditions as a possible reason for sleep disorders. Employees have to deal with short deadlines and high-performance pressure.
They have to work overtime, night shifts and be constantly available even after work. These are high contributing risk factors to healthy sleep.
Due to the spread of the coronavirus, more and more employees are working from home. This makes it even more difficult to separate personal and professional life within your own four walls. Compliance with sleep hygiene can, thus, help avoid sleep disorders.
Working at night is a major risk factor for sleep disorders. You should take special care to achieve good sleep duration and quality.
While shift work alone messes up the biorhythm. It also has other sleep-damaging aspects which makes the problem more complex.
It’s more difficult, yes, but also not impossible. Avoid the worst damage and long term consequence with targeted sleep training. Sleep hygiene rules can also be applied to the night shift and make them safer and more portable.
The concept of the night shift already encompasses the two biggest problems it entails. The fact that you have to work at night and sleep during the day contradicts the natural biorhythm.
To be able to cope with this, the rules of sleep hygiene help to establish routine, conditioning and working with light and dark.
Additional Sleep Hygiene Tips for Shift Workers
01. Fixed Bedtimes
Fixed bedtime times should also be adhered to at the weekend if you work permanently on the night shift. This makes it easier to adapt to the shifted rhythm, as the body does not have to constantly get used to it.
With changing shift work, it is better to get the body used to the changeover by slightly adjusting the bedtime a few days earlier.
Caffeine can help at work at night when you can’t overcome sleepiness. Although, It should not be taken too late or it may harm sleep during the day.
Melatonin promoting measures help to set the sleep hormone in motion throughout the day. With sunglasses in the dark, you can prepare for sleep on the way home and counteract the light. By making sure that you completely block out the light when you get home, you will be able to sleep better during the day.
04. Light Exposure
You shouldn’t expose yourself to light before bedtime, but all the more at night during work hours. Because intense daylight helps you to better accept the changed biorhythm at night. This inhibits the production of melatonin and makes you feel more awake even late at night.
05. Daylight Lamps
Daylight lamps can help as well. While normal office lamps are not enough to provide you with enough LUX (unit of measure for light). Opting for special lamps for light therapy can be of support. They are used regularly in winter when the sun is getting less and less and the associated winter depression occurs. Check to see if you can put a daylight lamp in your workplace.
The other rules of sleep hygiene that you have already learned are also applicable in shift work.
Natural Sleep Aids for Sleep Hygiene
In nature, there are two medicinal plants that have proven to be particularly effective. When it comes to the difficulty of falling asleep and staying asleep – valerian and hops are the best.
These two medicinal plants naturally support the body’s own processes for healthy sleep.
Valerian promotes sleep pressure and reduces the time it takes to fall asleep.
Hops shorten the time it takes for you to fall asleep.
It’s effective in people who have trouble sleeping through the night. As well as those who suffer from a restless sleep.
Summary and Key Takeaways
Why is Sleep Hygiene Important?
What are the obvious advantages of functioning sleep hygiene? You no longer roll around for hours in bed.
The nights are not torturing you anymore and of course, you are no longer so tired when you sleep well and restfully.
But, healthy sleep hygiene has a far-reaching effect than just ending tiredness. A lack of an unhealthy sleep makes itself felt in many areas and can have serious consequences in the long run.
01. It Prevents Depression
Poor sleep has a profound effect on mental health and can lead to serious illness. The risk of suffering from depression or another mental illness increases by up to 50 percent in people with insomnia.
Scientists suspect the cause is either persistent exhaustion and increased production of stress hormones – or the feeling of helplessness, which is a burden on the psyche.
02. It Protects Cardiovascular System
The body also suffers when it does not get enough sleep. Those affected are more likely to be ill and more susceptible to infection. Even worse: the risk of life-threatening diseases of the cardiovascular system increases significantly. With healthy sleep hygiene, you can, therefore, prevent a heart attack or sleep attack.
03. You Avoid Mood Swings
Everyone knows it: whoever is tired can be intolerable. You react irritably to little things, you don’t have control over yourself and you go through numerous mood swings. If you sleep better thanks to sleep hygiene, you are more balanced and can control your moods.
04. It Reduces Errors
Fatigue and exhaustion make it difficult to concentrate and increase the error rate. Careless mistakes creep in that would otherwise not happen to you. The better you sleep, the more focused you are – and the fewer mistakes you make at work.
What does Sleep Hygiene Consists of?
Good and healthy sleep hygiene is not rocket science and can easily be learned. First, it requires discipline to adhere to certain guidelines. It also requires a willingness to change previous habits.
To help you achieve better sleep hygiene, here are 10 tips and rules you should follow:
01. Dim Your Lights
Bright light is a signal to the body that it is time to wake up. You should, therefore, dim the lights in the evening. In the dark, the sleep hormone melatonin is increasingly released and you are prepared for a restful night. This also applies if you wake up at night. Try to avoid bright lights on the way to the toilet. This will make it easier for you to fall asleep again afterwards.
02. Develop Rituals and Let Go of Worries
Sleep hygiene should always include a ritual before going to sleep. For example, put on your pajamas, write down what happened during the day, brush your teeth, turn off all the lights, and then go to bed. Keep this routine every evening and repeat it as an evening routine before going to bed
03. Avoid Stimulants
Substances like caffeine and nicotine stimulate the sympathetic nervous system. Which handles nighttime brain activity and stress. The sleep-damaging effects of such stimulants can last for 8-14 hours. For better sleep, you should try to avoid them as much as possible.
04. Light Workout
Exercise and workouts are important and can contribute to sleep hygiene. If you are active during the day, more likely, you’re going to be tired in the evening and fall asleep faster. However, longer workouts shouldn’t take place late in the evening.
05. Choose The Right Meal
A full stomach or a full bladder can disturb sleep. A small snack before bed (e.g. milk with honey, a banana) can be helpful.
06. Go For Same Bedtime Everyday
Children and adults should have fixed bedtimes. If you go to bed at a different time every day, you will mess up the sleep-wake rhythm completely. Set a specific time to go to sleep and deviate from it as little as possible.
This also applies to get up at the same time in the morning. The fixed times create a constant rhythm that your body can adjust to. You must maintain these times as much as possible on the weekends or vacations.
A regular time is important, as it forms the “anchor point” of the biorhythm.
07. Stand Up and Don't Look at the Clock
Whether you haven’t fallen asleep or wake up at night, don’t look at the clock to know what time it is. That just creates unnecessary pressure and makes bad thoughts. Instead, get up and try to engage in a monotonous activity until you’re sleepy again.
08. Optimize your Bedroom
If possible, use the bedroom only for sleeping, not as a study or TV room. It should also be at the right temperature (not too warm, 16-18 degrees are recommended) and be dark and quiet.
09. Avoid Naps
These can lead to problems falling and staying asleep at night. If you can’t go without a short nap, you should not do it after 3 p.m. and stop it after 20 minutes with an alarm clock.
10. Manage stress and Practice Relaxation
Before going to sleep, you need to get some rest. Those who are agitated or brooding hard usually only lie awake for a long time and toss from one side to the other.
Writing your worries in a diary or a piece of paper is worth considering. Reading also helps to calm your thoughts before going to sleep and to fall asleep relaxed.
Are these familiar to you? Are there any other tips that work for you?
Then please let me down in the comment section. Thanks
We can all benefit from the measures taken to ensure good sleep. Because increasing the quality of sleep, regulating the duration and overall gaining more control over your sleep benefits everyone.
Keeping a sleep diary helps to check compliance with sleep hygiene rules and to identify changes. Get on the track of healthy, restful sleep.
Since the rules of sleep hygiene work without active ingredients, no side effects are to be expected. They are easy to follow and can be reconciled with everyday life and personal circumstances.
Even difficult sleep situations can be normalized in this way. Try it out and don’t leave your sleep to chance!
Sleep Hygiene FAQs
What is sleep hygiene?
Sleep hygiene describes rules that aim to improve the duration and quality of sleep. The measures help to identify and control bad habits before, after and during sleep. Meanwhile, behaviors that promote sleep are built up. You can find out which rules you use and how in the article.
How many hours of sleep do I need?
It varies for each person on how much sleep they need. A study determines 7 hours to be the best sleep duration but it can have deviations. A person’s age and their daily exercise also play a part in how much sleep they need. In short, a 7 to 9-hour sleep framework is a good place to start.
How long should it take for me to fall asleep?
It takes 10 to 20 minutes for a majority of people to fall asleep. If you’re facing difficulty in falling asleep, don’t just roll around in bed. That just creates unnecessary pressure and encourage bad thoughts. Instead, get up and try to engage in a monotonous activity until you’re sleepy again.
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