How to Sleep Better at Night—Naturally

Sometimes our lives get so busy that we tend to forget sleep. However, if this becomes a habit, it can lead to many negative side-effects. This includes feeling sluggish the next day, along with a loss of focus.

Insomnia has also been linked to serious health issues, such as a weakened immune system, as well as greater risk of hypertension and diabetes. Thus, quality sleep is not optional–but essential to good health.

Here are five surefire tips for better sleep, improving your health and providing your mind and body with the rest they need.

1. Cut Out or Reduce Bedtime Fluid Intakes.
Many people usually find that they can't get enough sleep because they have to wake up in and use the bathroom frequently. With excessive fluids late in the day, this could be as often as twenty minutes, thus greatly disturb your sleep cycles.

While it is important to tank up with the recommended eight glasses of water, you should drink it throughout the day–not right before bed. Make sure that you keep yourself hydrated throughout the day, so that you don’t have to do it all at once.

Also, avoid or eliminate caffeine in the late afternoon and evening.

2. Adjust the Room Temperature.
If you’re trying to fall asleep, experts recommend that bedroom temperatures should be around 68° Fahrenheit. Adjusting your thermostat to reflect this, and choose sleepwear and bed covers that provide the most comfortable temperature. This will help you drift to sleep faster without waking up again.

3. Clear your Mind Before Going to Bed.
Anxiety and stress are the main culprits that can make one uncomfortable and prevent a good night’s sleep. Before going to sleep, you can meditate to clear your mind and thoughts. Additionally, you can keep a notebook on your nightstand to write away anything that’s troubling you. This practice has been found effective in reducing stress and combatting bedtime insomnia.

4. Limit use of electronics before bed.
Studies have shown that people who use electronic devices, particularly smartphones take longer to fall asleep (Type 1 Insomnia) and wake up more frequently throughout the night (Type 2 Insomnia).

This is because the light from these devices stimulates the brain, hence making it harder to wind down. So, in order to sleep better, finish your work at least an hour before bed—and ditch TV before bed, along with computer and smartphone/tablet use.

5. Turning off your lights.

Artificial light can at times create discomfort in most people, due to the production of blue light. Blue light is known to inhibit the production of melatonin, an essential hormone that sends you the signal to go to sleep.s

One is advised to keep their room dark and quiet. If you have these high-tech gadgets in your room, ensure that they are not facing you. If you don’t have to get up too early, it can also be a good idea to invest in thick curtains to block out the morning sun.

While the above tips are not in any way exhaustive, they are definitely some of the best ways to optimize quality sleep. By following them, I hope you’ll have a better night’s sleep tonight.