Pillow Talk: 10 ways to help you sleep better

March 9th, 2009

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Take a bath before bedtime!
In those cold winter nights a bath will help increase your body temperature and help you relax. The drop in body temperature that occurs when getting into that (often cold) bed afterward triggers a subjective sense that it’s time to go to sleep.

Create a bed time ritual!
It could be as simple as washing your face and brushing your teeth, our settling down with a cup of Bedtime tea (Yogi Bedtime Tea certified organic tea available at retailers across Canada), a bedtime ritual allows you to slow down and prepare yourself for a good night’s sleep.

Clean Sheets!
w/ Liquid Soap Nuts (organic/chemical-free detergent) & Certified Organic French Lavender oil
The last thing you want to worry about while trying to fall asleep is dirty sheets, so make sure to clean your sheets regularly. Also add a few drops of Lavender oil in your washing machine’s rinse cycle and let the calming effects of lavender take you to sleepy land. Lavender has been known to decrease anxiety and has been proven to help you sleep better, also it’s nice not have any modified perfumes in your bedsheets that might cause irritations to the skin.

Have a light (emphasis on light) snack before bed!
John likes having milk and toast with peanut butter. Warm milk actually contains amino acid in it called tryptophan which increase the levels of serotonin and melatonin in the brain which slows down your brain’s activity. While peanut butter…  well peanut butter is just plain delicious.

Clean up before bed!
Clutter leads to anxiety, and anxiety leads to sleepless nights.  Give your bedroom a quick tidy before bed, it’s one less thing on your mind and it provides you with a calm atmosphere to fall asleep in!

Exercise!
Working out in the morning can significantly increase your chances of having a good sleep, if you exercise before bed it can have a reverse effect. So the next time you wake up having to shovel the sidewalk, maybe it’s a good thing? (Probably not)

Limit your Screen time!
Avoid the computer and television when it’s time for bed, the body needs a gradual reduction in light for a natural sleep (think of a sunset), rather than a gradual decrease in light and then the sharp brightness of a LCD screen. So don’t be like us, updating Kitka and watching Colbert Report & Seinfeld reruns all throughout the night.

Avoid Caffeine!
An obvious one but it needs to be mentioned, you should really stop your caffeine intake at least 4 hours before sleep, but it is recommended to do so much before! Caffeine can stay in your system for up to 12 hours and it’s also in products you might not think would contain it, like chocolate, mints, and gum.

Get up at the same time everyday!
Getting up and going down stairs to have a relaxing breakfast basking in the early morning sun is a really good way to help your sleep efforts. Keep your biological clock going in the right direction, avoid naps, and try your best to skip those (amazing) weekend sleep-ins.

Maybe it’s your bedding and pillows!
Scratchy sheets and lumpy pillows keep you up at night. It’s rarely (to never) fun buying household necessities like bedding but indulging a bit in higher quality items for an activity that you are required to do for at least 7 hours a night makes a lot of sense. Have some fun with bedding, look for soft textures and colours that are fun and pleasing. Consider buying organic, free of dyes and chemicals. And for pillows, there’s always the Hästens!

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