Sleep better, look younger, and feel more energetic than a golden retriever puppy! This isn’t late-night TV trying to fool you with false advertising. You really can achieve these things. Try these top 10 tips from the Cleveland Clinic to make your dreams of a better night's rest come true.
- Boost your serotonin levels (good for getting zzz’s) by eating foods rich in tryptophan (beans, turkey, chicken, eggs, peanut butter, pumpkin seeds and nuts) within two to three hours of bedtime.
- Turn off electronic devices at least an hour before you want to fall asleep. The light emitted can disrupt your sleep cycle.
- Fun fact: People who don’t have a TV in their bedroom have 50 percent more sex than those who do!
- Create a comforting sleep ritual. Thirty minutes before you want to sleep, practice deep breathing, praying and meditation. They all help you to slow down and let go of anxieties and tension.
- Dim your lights 30 minutes before you want to sleep; close the curtains to shut out external light; and add some white noise (sleep machines offer the sounds of rainforests or ocean waves) to help you enjoy deep, restorative sleep.
- Put your money where your mattress is (and we don’t mean underneath it!). Buy one that is right for you based on comfort, support and temperature — and take your time trying it out.
- Then, choose a mattress cover to block allergens from finding their way into your bed and disrupting your slumber.
- That goes for you and your room. A cool, dark room helps your body kick up melatonin production to knock you out. As for clothing, less is best (your partner may agree with us!). Your PJs should be non-allergenic, loose and cool.
- First, figure out how long all of the things you do before bed will take — making lunches, flossing your teeth, etc. — and work from there to set a bedtime that will ensure you get seven to eight hours.
- If you can’t fall asleep, don’t battle it out in bed. After 15 minutes, get up and do a calming activity. (No, this is not the time to watch TV or go online.) Listening to soft music or meditating (in rooms without blue wavelength lights, which can be found in clock radios, electronics and some lightbulbs) can lull you back to the land of Nod.
- Staying active will help you sleep better. Just make the sweaty stuff happen at least an hour and a half before bed — unless you’re doing something in bed that makes you sweat, which is A-OK.
- Alcohol and caffeine, though highly enjoyable and healthful in the right amounts, can interfere with your sleep. Avoid the booze a couple hours before bed and kill the caffeine at least three hours prior to hitting the hay.
If you think you need to sleep better, you probably do. We can help you get the rest you need with tips from the Cleveland Clinic Wellness six-week online program, GO! to Sleep. Also, use our 3 step process to find the perfect mattress for getting a good night's rest.
Partially adapted from YOU: Staying Young — The Owner’s Manual for Extending Your Warranty, by Michael F. Roizen, MD, and Mehmet C. Oz, MD.