Good Sleep Habits
With proper sleep habits, it is easier to fall asleep and stay asleep. Some of these good habits include avoiding caffeine and other stimulants late in the day, going to sleep at the same time each night, and sleeping in a comfortable place that is dark, quiet, and neither too warm nor too cold.
Tips for Developing Good Sleep Habits
There are many habits you can follow to help you get a good night's sleep. Below is a list of things that typically help people sleep better:
- Try to go to sleep at the same time each night and get up at the same time each morning.
- Try not to take naps during the day, because naps may make you less sleepy at night.
- Avoid caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol late in the day. Caffeine and nicotine are stimulants and can keep you from falling asleep. Alcohol can cause you to wake in the night. It also interferes with sleep quality.
- Get regular exercise. Try not to exercise close to bedtime, because it may stimulate you and make it hard to fall asleep. Experts suggest not exercising for three hours before the time you go to sleep.
- Don't eat a heavy meal late in the day. A light snack before bedtime may help you sleep.
- Make your sleeping place comfortable. Be sure that it is dark, quiet, and not too warm or too cold. If light is a problem, try a sleeping mask. If noise is a problem, try earplugs, a fan, or a "white noise" machine to cover up the sounds.
- Follow a routine to help relax and wind down before sleep, such as reading a book, listening to music, or taking a bath.
- Avoid using your bed for anything other than sleep or sex.
- If you can't fall asleep and don't feel drowsy, get up and read (or do something that is not overly stimulating) until you feel sleepy.
- If you tend to lie awake worrying about things, try making a to-do list before you go to bed. This may help you to "let go" of those worries overnight.
- See your healthcare provider if you think that you have insomnia or another sleep disorder.