Health and Wellness

Having trouble sleeping? 

Counting sheep may work for some, but a good night’s sleep starts with a good mattress, mattress pad and pillows that breathe and are supportive.  The one you have been using for years may have exceeded its life expectancy – about 9 or 10 years for most good quality mattresses. Here are some tips for getting a good night’s sleep.

The Big Picture

It’s important to stick to a sleep schedule and retire & rise at the same time every day…even weekends and vacations. Going to bed with a full tummy or drinking multiple cocktails at night won’t help you rest, but it will make for vivid dreams. Create a bedtime ritual that includes getting comfortable, shedding confining sleepwear and drinking water. Make sure that there is no light and minimal noise in your bedroom. Black out curtains and white noise machines can help. Finally, let Fido & Fifi sleep in their own beds, not yours.

Create A Refreshing Haven 

Plants can help you get a good night’s rest. Consider aloe vera, which emits oxygen at night and has been listed by NASA as one of the best indoor plants to improve air quality. Lavender helps induce sleep and reduce anxiety.  Jasmine’s smell improves the quality of sleep and has a soothing effect on mind/body.  English Ivy is a great air purifier and beneficial for those who have breathing problems and asthma. The Snake Plant emits oxygen, taking carbon dioxide from the air inside your house. It also filters nasty household toxins from the air.

Turn Off Your Mind

In addition to creating a no-device zone, it’s a good idea to not look at your cell phone or tablet before sleeping. To rest your anxious mind, jot down lists of what you need to do, drink some chamomile tea, sniff some lavender oil, turn the temperature down to under 72 degrees (60-67 is optimal) and do a calming stretch before retiring for the night.

Exercise & Naps

Long daytime naps can interfere with nighttime sleep — especially if you’re struggling with insomnia or poor sleep quality at night. If you choose to nap during the day, limit yourself to about 10 to 30 minutes and make it during the mid afternoon. Physical activity during the day is important, but avoid exercising close to bedtime as it can energize you and affect a good night’s rest. PN

Article by Nanette Wiser

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