Late nights can make for exhausting and unproductive days. Break this vicious cycle by getting into a regular sleep pattern. Improve your chances of a good night's sleep by addressing the reasons you're staying up late. Here are some tips for getting the sleep your body deserves.
1. Your Phone Is Too Bright
We are locked to our screens all day, and it's messing with our sleep cycles. Behind our eyes lie the pineal gland, which prompts the production of our sleep hormone melatonin.
The pineal gland is regulated by light. Sunrises emit blue waves that creep through our windows, signaling the pineal gland to produce less melatonin. That change wakes us up.
Many phones have a blue light that mimics early morning sun rays. That's why 91.8% of people use the dark mode feature on their phones to avoid exposure to that bright blue light that keeps us awake!
2. Stress Is Getting the Best of You
Stress hijacks our sleep because it disrupts our hormones. Facing stress can cause a spike in the production of the hormone cortisol.
Ideally, cortisol levels even out when the perceived stress is over—that is, if the stress ends. Over 40% of people with sleep problems report stress as a factor.
Natural ways to combat stress before bed include:
- Light yoga
- Diffusing essential oils
- Playing with singing bowls
- Putting on soundscapes or white noise
- Drinking herbal tea
- Taking a bath with CBD Bath Bombs
If you are getting restless in bed, remove yourself from the situation. Instead of tossing and turning, get out of bed and try one of the above suggestions. Once your mind calms, get back to bed for some good sleep.
3. You're Eating too Late
Daytime activities like working, exercising, and eating activate our sympathetic nervous system. These activities keep us alert, which keeps excitatory hormones, like cortisol and adrenaline, present in the body.
At night, the parasympathetic nervous system oversees our rest and digestion. How can our bodies rest if there's still food digesting in the belly?
Try to eat dinner around 6:00 PM. Your digestion decreases as the night continues, dropping by 10% for those who eat a 10:00 PM dinner. As a result, you might experience a stomachache or bloating that could keep you awake. This also applies to post-dinner snacking—try to avoid snacking too close to bedtime.
4. The Room Is Too Hot
Being active during the day increases your body temperature naturally. When the sun drops, so do our activity levels and body temperature. In fact, our body temperature drops about two degrees at night.
Your atmosphere should match these characteristics to promote optimal sleep. The best temperature for sleeping is 65 degrees Fahrenheit.
Experts suggest keeping the thermostat between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit. This range can accommodate fluctuations in your body temperature or thermostat readings.
5. Your Coffee Is Still Going Strong
Coffee is a natural stimulant that's rich in heart-healthy antioxidants. However, there can always be too much of a good thing.
Stop drinking coffee (and other caffeinated drinks) at least six hours before bedtime. That will give your body enough time to flush the caffeine out of your system.
If you need an extra cup of joe, there are a few ways to burn the caffeine off quicker. Try some light exercises and drink plenty of water to eliminate the caffeine with fluids.
Also, consider adding CBD oil to your coffee. CBD can help calm jitters that can make bedtime feel restless.
6. An Undiagnosed Sleep Disorder
Sleep problems aren't uncommon. Nor should they necessarily be a cause for concern.
In fact, 70% of people will have trouble sleeping one night per month. However, about 11% of people claim to have trouble sleeping every night.
Sleep problems might be an indicator of an underlying issue. You might be experiencing sleep apnea, mental health issues, or a stress disorder.
Please contact a physician if you experience frequent sleep problems. Being proactive with your health can save your life.
7. Time for a Bed Upgrade
Remember the story of The Princess and the Pea? You don't need an old classic to confirm that a lumpy bed isn't ideal for restful sleep.
Sleep experts suggest that you replace your mattress every five to seven years. The springs and materials will start to wear and degrade, which can make for an uncomfortable and squeaky bed.
After ten years, your mattress is prone to collecting dust, even mites. These can present allergens in your bedroom that can trigger symptoms that may keep you awake.
Hannah Smith is Joy Organics Director of Communications. She is driven by her passion for providing clear and accessible wellness and CBD education. In 2015, she received her BA in Media, Culture and the Arts from The King’s College in New York City and before Joy Organics, worked as writer and photographer in the Middle East and North Africa. Her work has been featured on Forbes, Vice, Vox, Denver Post, and the Coloradoan.