Update December 24, 2014

Dhaka 5-32 pm, 23-September, 2020

Good night’s sleep despite stress

FR Fateh

Good night's sleep is extremely important for good and healthy living

Good night’s sleep is extremely important for good and healthy living

24 December 2014, Nirapad News : Good night’s sleep has become a luxury few of us can afford nowadays. The life we lead requires us to stay up all night to work, study or have fun. However, inadequate sleep results to both long and short term consequences. It can affect mood, ability to retain and learn information, and may increase the risk of serious diseases and accidents. Constant stresses of life and work issues will leave anyone awake at night or with lack of required sleep. Those who have a more sensitive nervous system are inclined to suffer from insomnia. Getting a good night’s sleep is extremely important to brain function; moreover, sleep can affect proper hormone balance. Adopting the below habits can encourage better sleep.

1. Reduce caffeine intake
Human sensitivity to the effects of caffeine on sleep is absolutely variable, but in most cases it helps restore better levels of wakefulness. The stimulating effects of caffeine take hours to wear off and can wreak havoc on quality sleep. Try to eliminate it from your nutrition and you will notice the improvement of your sleep. If you cannot live without caffeine, you can replace it with water or herbal tea to boost your energy and health naturally.

2. Relax
In the evening hours, it is desirable to provide various relaxing procedures. Many doctors recommend creating a suitable sleep environment to prepare your body for sleep. Warm temperatures can greatly affect sleep quality. Open the window to air the room and fill it with oxygen. For example, I find reading and practicing gentle yoga the best prep activities before sleeping. These relaxing activities can promote better sleep by easing the transition between wakefulness and drowsiness.

3. Left-nostril breathing makes wonders
Have you ever practiced yoga? Left-nostril breathing is a good way to improve your sleep. Many yoga students report sleeping better after beginning a regular yoga practice. This yoga technique activates your parasympathetic nervous system. Use the thumb or index finger of your right hand to close your right nostril. Breathe deep and long for 5 minutes through the left nostril or until you fall asleep. These slow deep breaths have a great relaxing effect on your body and mind.

4. A sleepy meal at dinnertime
If you want to have a good night’s sleep, try not to overload your digestive system. Your discomfort might keep you up. About 90 minutes before you want to nod off, head for the kitchen and make yourself a light sleepy-time snack. You’d better limit the amount of water you drink before bed to prevent night trips to the toilet.
Moreover, there are many foods that promote sleep. They include melatonin, magnesium and tryptophan. Chamomile tea or warm milk with honey is practically a sleeping pill. For desert you can try some bananas. In addition to soothing melatonin, and serotonin, bananas contain magnesium that is a good muscle relaxant.

5. Train your mind
Many people have the fear of insomnia. They get anxious because they think they are not sleeping enough. Besides, stress at work or anticipation of a challenging day ahead can keep you wound up until 2 or 3 am and occasionally all night. A few bad nights can activate a cycle of insomnia lasting for weeks. Fearful thoughts create emotional and physical tension and you cannot fall into a deep sleep. If you cannot fight this fear, ask someone for support. A compassionate friend or spouse is a good source to turn for emotional support when suffering from a phobia of insomnia.

6. Take a hot bath
One of the most effective ways to fall asleep is to take a hot bath. You should take it at least one hour before bedtime. Mix ½ cup Epsom salts with a few drops of an essential oil. Soak for at least 20 minutes and it will help you relax and fall asleep faster.

7. Relaxation breaks
Try to take frequent 10 minute breaks during the day and use them to move around as much as possible. Take a stretch, walk or exercise if possible. It will help you keep your body in balance. Moreover, you will avoid the state of overwhelm by the end of the day.

8. Read
Reading is the best choice to calm your mind down before sleep. It is better to read an exciting book that you’ve read before where you know the ending. This kind of activity is absolutely individual, because some people gain the opposite effect. As a result, reading makes them more awake, especially if you are reading an extremely exciting book. Trust yourself to know the genre which keeps you awake and which one puts you to sleep. I think, a good novel will do the trick just fine.

9. Avoid the light
It is necessary to do the same things before sleep to give your body a signal that it’s time to wind down. First of all, you should get rid of any bright lights you might have in your bedroom. The bright light stops the production of melatonin in your brain. You can use the lights with dimmers to have an opportunity to adjust the brightness in your bedroom. Plus, you can use heavy curtains or an eye mask to block the light. Keeping computers, TVs out of the room will strengthen the mental association between your bedroom and sleep. If you cannot get relaxed due to some annoying noise, then use earplugs.

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