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Tips for sleeping well

Sleep affects your wellbeing. Here you will find some suggestions for sleeping better


Ventilation

Our Bedroom has to be well ventilated. The headboard of the bed, should preferably be oriented northward, and your feet southwood.


Dinner

Avoid stimulants like caffeinated drinks before you sleep.Abundant dinners favour heavyness and can hinder sleep. Experts recommend dinner at least 90 minutes before bedtime.


Clothes

Use large pieces and preferably 100% cotton.


Television

Avoid watching movies or scenes that create emotional stress before you go to bed.


Shower

Take a relaxing bath or shower with hot or tempered water before you go to bed.


Time to bed

Try to go to bed always at the same time. The patterns of behavior help to improve sleep.


Mattress

Choose a mattress that adapts to your weight and height. Change it if it has ten years.


Reduce the time you spend in front of the TV and the computer

The brightness emitted by the tv or computer screen can delay you falling into a deep sleep. The cause: light suppresses the production of melatonin, a hormone secreted at sunset which tells the brain that the night has come. When the levels of melatonin are low, our brain thinks that it is still day—and remains ready for daily activities—. When possible, wait till the morning to turn on the television or connect to the Internet. If you must use any type of technology which emits light during the night, try to turn it off one or two hours before you go to sleep.


Hide the alarm clock

To check the alarm clock to see when you have to get up can turn your night sleep into a nightmare. This constant state of alert can make your brain stay awake, preventing you from falling into a true deep and restorative sleep. The simplest solution: set the alarm clock and then place the numbers pointing towards the wall or place the clock on the floor, in a drawer or under the bed.


In winter, turn the heating down

For a good night sleep, make sure your room is fresh enough —as fresh as to manage with just a light sheet on you—. In this way, the environment will be in synchrony with the internal temperature of your body —which naturally tends to rise during the night—. The ideal temperature to sleep is between 19 and 26 degrees, any superior or inferior temperature may cause sleep interruptions or difficulties to sleep.


Eliminate the last drink

Alcohol depresses the nervous system—the system of cells, tissues, nerves and organs which control the body responses to internal and external stimulus—. Consequently, to drink a glass of wine before you go to bed may help you fall asleep. The sedative effects fade as the body metabolizes the alcohol and this can wake you up in the middle of the night and make you have problems to go back to sleep again. It has been shown that alcohol interferes with the natural body biorhythm, making the arterial pressure rise and the heart rate accelerates at night, when actually, the body should relax. It is not necessary that you give up your cocktail of tonight to sleep well but do try to eliminate the alcohol within the two or three hours previous getting into bed.


Exercise

Although scientists do not still understand the causes, aerobic exercises have proved to be beneficial to get to sleep, to spend more hours immersed in the deep sleep and to have less sleep interruptions during the night. At the same time, vigorous exercise may act as an stimulant (a way of energizing during the day), so plan your exercise rutine in the mornings or afternoons, when your body needs the most this energy injection.


If you cannot sleep, follow the rule of the 15 minutes

If you cannot fall asleep, or if you wake up and cannot get to sleep again within the next 15 minutes, get out of bed and do something relaxing that helps you clear your mind, such as read, meditate or knit (but never watch tv or surf the Web!). Then, once you feel tired again, go back to bed. If you are obstinated to stay in bed or try to make yourself fall asleep, you will just fall into an anxiety state that is exactly the least you need.


Write down your worries

During the day, write down any worry that is disturbing your thoughts. Then, try to find the way to solve these matters before you go to bed. If you are running out of ideas, set the list aside and think again about the solutions during your morning shower or while you go to work. The simple fact of establishing a plan to deal with your problems and your tasks will make you feel that you have done an important progress, letting you relax and wake up ready to face the new day with greater strength and trust.


Control the caffeine intake after noon

Usually, to consume a moderate amount of caffeine —between 200 and 300 mg, between two and three cups of coffee— can make you feel more alert and energized in the next hours. However, when caffeine is consumed in great amounts, the quality of your sleep may get worse, leaving on your face great rings under the eyes as evidence. An advice for those who are highly sensitive to caffeine is to choose an expresso with a dash of milk or decaffeinated coffee (which anyway has a caffeine percentage) or infusions based on rooibos, fruits, hierb María Luisa, camomile which, among others, do not have estimulants. And be careful because tea has between 1 and 4 miligrams of theine per cup and green tea may have an average of 20 miligrams of theine per cup.


Breathing

When we are under pressure, we breathe only with our chest, as short pantings. This breathing takes less air to our lungs and reduce the oxigen supply to the body and brain, making you feel mentally and physically tired. The objetive, in this case, is to breathe deeply with the diaphragm —when you breathe in, your navel should swell like a balloon; when you breathe out, it should go flat slowly—. This breathing is ideal to practice if you are laid down.


If you have a pet, find it a separate room

At night, pets snore, shake their bodies, they turn around and even steal your sheets and place on the bed. Consequently, it is not strange that 53% of the pets’ owners who sleep with their animals have some kind of sleep interruption at night, according to a study of the Mayo Clinic Sleep Disorders Center in Rochester. Consider that you must relocate your faithful friend in another room, although as from now you must spend your nights in complete loneliness. http://newsnetwork.mayoclinic.org/discussion/are-your-pets-disturbing-your-sleep-youre-not-alone-mayo-clinic-study-finds


Tidy the place where you sleep

Straight things up. The untidiness may make you feel out of control, specially when you are going through a rough period. On the other hand, the simple fact of achieving an objective, although it is just tyding the clothes all over the room, may be energizing.

If your tired throughout the day you can't perform naturally, and it lasts more than 2 o 3 weeks, consult your doctor or a specialist in sleep deprivation.