4 Steps Towards a Healthy Sleep
Category: College Life
Sleeping well is crucial for everyone, especially if you spend a lot of energy on mental work – studying, memorizing, writing, researching, etc. Every student should have enough sleep to be energized and productive during the day, as well as stay healthy physically and mentally. Let’s take a look at a few steps that will make your sleep better and tighter.
Step 1. Create a Regime
The more you follow a consistent schedule, the more it becomes a habit. And while it’s not always possible due to life circumstances, you still should create a routine of going to bed at the same time each day and waking up at the same hour. The trick is to make your inner clock work in your favor. As soon as you become consistent and disciplined with your sleep, the easier it gets to avoid insomnia and sleep deprivation.
For example, if you take the rule of getting up at 8 a.m. each day even at weekends, you will see that you start feeling sleepy around the same time each evening. It might be not that easy at first when you need to push yourself to get into bed or to wake up. But it’s like any other habit you create – it just needs some time.
A schedule is crucial to create a healthy sleep pattern with at least seven hours of sleep daily. If you don’t have a regime, you might feel very tired in the morning and sleepless at night because your system doesn’t know that it’s time to go to sleep.
Step 2. Find the Right Bedding
There are a lot of different pillows that you can buy in a store. Some of them are very firm, others are pretty soft. There are also orthopedic pillows and even special ‘beauty’ pillows and pillows for side sleepers. You might think that there is no difference between them but that could be the core of the problem.
If your head doesn’t receive adequate support, you might experience neck and back pains, headaches, bad sleep, and other problems. Find the right for yourself – doctors say that the best option for healthy sleep is to get a latex or memory foam orthopedic pillow or a soft and squishy one that you can smoosh and adjust to your neck and head. You should not be sleeping on a pillow that makes you push your head to your shoulder a lot or one that is too high.
Another thing that you should think of is the material of your mattress and your sheets. While not every student can pick the mattress they sleep on as it is provided by the campus dorm, you can still buy a mattress topper to make your back pains and sleep problems go away. Opt for medium-firm toppers, high enough, and made of memory foam to have great back support.
Your sheets are important too – as cheap polyester ones can cause static or be too hot to sleep in. Cotton and satin are the best choices for your bed.
Step 3. Air Your Room
Your brain needs oxygen, especially in sleep. It’s the time when your cells regenerate and your body gets to rest from daily activities. All of the processes slow down but your heart goes on – it makes sure that blood cells transfer oxygen to all of the tissues and organs in your body.
That’s why sleeping in small and air-tight rooms is bad for you – it causes headaches, pressure problems, and low quality of sleep. The more air you get in your room, even during cold winter days, the better your sleep is.
It’s also good to keep the right temperature and humidity in your room. If you have a chance – purchase a room humidifier and turn it on before bedtime, especially if you want to keep your skin hydrated. It’s also very useful if you often get colds – the 50-60% humidity allows your nose to avoid dryness which can be the reason for nasal infections.
Step 4. Stay Away from Your Gadgets
Blue light from the screen is not only bad for your eyesight – but it also can significantly impact your brain activity, making you stay away. Blue light is not only about your computer screen, but also your phone, tablet, TV, etc. Make sure you don’t use your gadgets for at least an hour before sleep.
When you are about to go to bed, spend this time without your gadgets, as they will raise your brain activity, and thus will not let your nervous system relax. It’s better to spend this time meditating, doing your evening routine, or even reading a book.
Also, try taking breaks when working on your computer. It’s important to let your eyes and brain rest during long study or working sessions in order to avoid eyestrain. It’s easy but it really helps to prevent serious issues in the future. It also helps you to avoid overloading your brain and go to bed with a calmed nervous system, thus you fall asleep faster.
When trying to improve your sleep, make sure you stick to a consistent schedule and don’t rush with conclusions when the issue is not solved as fast as you want it to. Give your body some time – imagine how many years you were making a lot of mistakes sleep-wise and now you need to be patient about it. You might also want to see a specialist if you struggle with insomnia or other sleep issues.