There are some of us who, no matter how hard we try, just can’t seem to get enough sleep at night. When we do eventually fall asleep, we keep waking up during the night, seemingly for no reason at all. This is known as insomnia, and apart from it being exceptionally frustrating, it also causes us to feel sluggish and plays havoc with the way we function during the day.
So, how do we overcome these sleepless or troubled nights?
Proven and effective ways to beat insomnia
Make sure you’re exposed to bright light during the day
Your body has an in-built method of keeping time called the circadian rhythm, which affects how your body, brain and hormones work to keep you awake, and tell you when it’s time to go to sleep. As long as there is bright light around (natural sunlight is best), it will help you stay alert and keep your body functioning properly.
This rhythm will tell you to stay awake as long as you are exposed to bright lights. In other words, bright, natural sunlight will help a lot to keep you alert and functioning well. If you stay active during these daylight hours, then your body will start to slow down naturally late in the day and be able to rest at night.
Skip the caffeine after 4 pm
Have your coffee or tea as you wake up in the morning and all through the day too if you like, because caffeine is known to be a great stimulant. It helps your brain stay focused and alert, and your body energetic.
You should, however, avoid caffeine after 4 pm because it will mess with your body’s natural slow-down process and prevent you from falling asleep when you go to bed at night
When you exercise, your body produces serotonin, often referred to as “happy hormones”, which help to keep your body perfectly balanced. These “happy hormones” are fantastic, especially when you’ve had a particularly stressful day.
Spending some time at a gym or playing a game to increase your heart rate and blood circulation, will get rid of the stress and help you to fall asleep easier at night and have a decent night’s rest.
Maintain a regular sleeping schedule
Since the circadian rhythm only works properly with regular waking and sleeping times, it is important that you go to sleep at around the same time every night, if possible. Do this, and you will start feeling sleepy at that same time every day.
A good example of how your circadian rhythm works, is when you set your alarm for the same time every morning, and after a few days, start waking up a couple of minutes before it goes off. It will do the same thing every day for you, to make sure that you get sufficient, restful sleep.
The amount of sleep you get every night plays an important part in how you function during the day. Beat insomnia by staying active during daylight hours to keep your body working at its peak when you need it to, and make sure that your bedroom is comfortable and has no bright lights or colours that will keep you awake at night.