A Guide on How to Support a Healthy Sleep Schedule

A Guide on How to Support a Healthy Sleep Schedule

A Guide on How to Support a Healthy Sleep Schedule

A quality night's sleep is crucial for the proper functioning of our bodies. If you've struggled with your sleep schedule at some point, you can attest that inadequate sleep can take a toll on your mental and physical health. 

Many factors in our daily lives may affect the quantity and quality of sleep we get. A study shows that between juggling a 9-5, school and family responsibilities, you're likely to neglect your sleep hygiene. While some factors that affect your sleep schedule are out of your control, you can incorporate specific changes to your daily life to fix your sleep schedule.

Here are a few tips that will help you support a healthy sleep schedule; 

  • Set a Sleep Routine and Stick to it 

  • Fixing your sleep schedule starts with creating one. Maintaining a regular sleep and wake up time even during the weekend will eventually help improve your sleep schedule. When you consistently go to bed at the same time every day, it reinforces your sleep-wake cycle. Over time, it will be easier for you to fall asleep and wake up. 

  • Exercise Regularly 

  • Regular exercise is the other lifestyle change that will improve the quality of your sleep as it aligns with your cardiac rhythm. Also, since exercise promotes melatonin production in your body, it helps you get quality sleep. However, avoid exercising too close to your bedtime, as exercising in the evening can overstimulate your body. 

  • Skip the Daytime Naps 

  • The reason you're here is that your sleep schedule is already whacked. The first step to improving the quality of your night sleep is skipping those afternoon naps. But if you must, it's better to nap before 3 pm so that you don't interfere with your nighttime sleep schedule. w

  • Create a Restful Sleeping Environment 

  • Your sleep environment is a crucial component of your sleep hygiene. Therefore, if you want to optimize your sleep schedule, keep your bedroom dark, cool and quiet. Research done in 2012 shows your bedroom's temperature is crucial to achieving quality sleep. 

    Also, prolonged exposure to light-emitting screens before bedtime can make it challenging to fall asleep. Therefore, you should ultimately avoid watching TV and scrolling through your smartphone before bed.

  • Avoid Large Meals and Drinks Before Bedtime 

  • Eating large meals and drinking too much liquid before bedtime make it harder to fall asleep. Therefore, it's recommended that you finish your meals at least 2-3 hours before bedtime. That gives your body ample time to digest. 

    If you're hungry, you should instead eat lighter snacks. Also, avoid drinking too much liquid before bedtime, as frequent bathroom visits might disrupt your sleep. 

    Should I Use Dietary Supplements to Improve My Sleep? 

    Getting quality sleep is essential for your mental and physical health. Unfortunately, many people struggle with getting a quality night's sleep. While the healthy lifestyle habits we've discussed in the section above might be the holy grail for some, others need a little extra help. You can try a wide array of sleep-promoting supplements if that's you. Some popular ones include; 

    • Melatonin 
    • Magnesium 
    • Glycine 
    • L-theanine
    • Ginkgo Biloba

    However, before making any changes to your daily regimen, consult with your healthcare professional. That will help you understand your individual nutritional needs. Also, it will be easier to identify effective and safe ways to utilize these supplements.