You've probably heard that when you are stressed, you should find ways to relax. One thing it’s important to consider is that your bedtime routine and environment can play a big role in how well or poorly you sleep at night. Here are some tips on what changes you may want to make in your life if you're suffering from stress-related sleep insomnia.
Some of the best things that you can do when you are stressed but need some good rest are:
- If possible, avoid taking naps during the day. If you have a lot on your plate, it may be that napping is unavoidable sometimes. But try to limit those episodes as much as you can to help improve overall sleep quality later in the night.
- Go to bed before 10 p.m.
- Get regular exercise, preferably early in the day. Do not exercise right before bed time, as the chemicals released from exercise can give you energy and keep you awake at night.
- Eat healthy - When stressed it's easy to turn to comfort food and junk food that is highly processed. This can upset your natural sleep patterns. Try to stick to lots of fruits, vegetables, lean meats, and lot's of water.
- If you must nap, try and keep it between 15-20 minutes for maximum efficiency without messing with your circadian rhythm.
- Get plenty of exposure to sunlight, preferably in the morning.
- Try to minimize the use of electronics at night (phones, tablets, computers) as they produce light that can interfere with your circadian rhythm over time.
- Use a sleep tracker app.
- Take a multivitamin daily - certain vitamins and minerals can play a role in unhealthy sleep patterns if you're deficient in them.
- Think about your sleeping environment, it’s important to have a nice dark room that’s as quiet as possible.
- If you are really stressed out make sure you spend the whole day prior relaxing and getting outside in nature (if possible).
- Try meditation, deep breathing exercises, or other relaxation techniques before bed. It can help take your mind off of stressors that can make sleeping difficult.
Some of the best ways to make yourself tired before sleep:
- Take a relaxing bath, do yoga before bed, stretch, walk, and more.
- Natural sleep aids like Melatonin can help resolve problems with insomnia.
- Keep your room cooler at night than during the day.
- Look into using a weighted blanket.
- Use earplugs if there is a lot of external noise while trying to sleep.
- Deep breathing exercises to help calm the mind and body before sleep.
Home remedies for stress reduction:
- Take a hot bath.
- Use essential oils. There are many different ways to use essential oils that can help you sleep better. Lavender is one of the most widely popular choices since this oil has been shown to be very effective at combating insomnia.
- Exercise. Exercise is another great way to relieve stress and anxiety, so consider going for a run or hitting the gym after work in order to help relieve some built up tension from the day.
- Sip some warm chamomile tea
- Enjoy reading a good book or magazine prior to sleep.
- Turn off all electronics one hour prior to sleep time.
When should sleep medication become an option?
If you have tried natural methods with no success, then it’s definitely time to consult a doctor in order to get some sleep medication that will allow you to fall asleep more quickly and improve your overall quality of sleep.
If you feel that you struggle falling asleep or staying asleep it is wise to consult with your doctor about possible options that could help get you back on track with getting an ample amount of proper sleep each evening.
The importance of sleep and what it does for the body:
The amount of sleep that a person gets each night is important to the overall well being of your body. When you are not getting a sufficient amount of sleep per evening, this can affect how your body functions as a whole. It has been shown that sleep deprivation can lead to weight gain and increase the risks for diabetes among many other health conditions.
What is sleep deprivation and how to avoid it?
Sleep deprivation is not having enough sleep on a regular basis. This can occur whenever you do not get the proper amount of sleep each day.
Learning to fall asleep when overly stressed:
If you are going through stressful times in your life, then there may be issues when it comes to falling asleep or staying asleep. If this is the case you should highly consider looking into meditations, guided hypnosis, and other techniques that allow for the body and mind to relax.
Stress can wreak havoc on the body and mind, including proper sleep. It is important to realize the stressors in your life and learn ways to cope and manage the stress so that it doesn't completely take over your life. If you feel like stress is getting the best of you, it may be wise to reach out to your doctor for some additional help and support in dealing with life stressors that are causing issues in the rest of your life. We wish you well and hope that you have a great sleep soon!