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4 Ways to Improve Your Sleep

By Victoria Meisinger

Have you ever stayed up for hours on end, all because your mind just wouldn’t shut up? I know I have, too many times to count. So if you’re like me, maybe these four tips will help turn that insomnia into some nice, good shut-eye.

Put Down the Phone

Smartphones can be pretty addicting. It’s easy to be tempted to check social media or surf through the internet while you’re relaxing in bed, but for the sake of sleep, don’t. These phones, as well as most other electronic devices, emit blue light, a type of glow that imitates daylight. Sending this signal to your brain is not good at such late hours because it can fool the brain into reacting as though it's daytime, waking it up and therefore making it harder to go to sleep.

However some new phones have started offering a nighttime mode. Even though this may get rid of the blue light, don’t think you’re off the hook. Going on social media, contacting friends, or even watching a movie can get you thinking when you should be relaxing, stimulating the brain, and making you more awake than you were before. So set your alarm and put it away; I promise it will still be there in the morning.

Cut Out Naps

Naps can be very beneficial during the day, and if they’re about 30 minutes, provide a decent energy boost. However any longer, and there’s a good chance they might disrupt your sleep schedule, especially if you nap later in the day. So don’t go overboard or you’ll probably regret it later as you stare at your ceiling, desperately counting sheep. After all, your body’s already caught up on rest, what’s the point in getting more?

Sleep Schedule

When trying to fall asleep, it all comes down to your body clock. The time you go to bed affects the time you wake up -- and vice versa. If you sleep in late you probably won’t be able to hit the hay early, thus making you sleep in again. The trick to getting your sleep schedule on track usually means only one day of torture, if you do it right. Want to get to bed earlier? Wake up early no matter how many hours you were able to clock in, then go to bed earlier. However, try to avoid naps; they may be tempting, but it will just prolong the torture of fatigue. So persevere, drink some coffee (in the morning, not before bed), and you’ll succeed!

Keep Your Bed as a Place for Relaxation

Your ability to relax and unwind can depend a lot on your surroundings. If you like to work or think in bed, your brain might process it as a stressful environment, therefore bringing back all those tense memories and prohibiting you from falling asleep. So if you’re one of those people, try working somewhere else and use your bed exclusively for sleep. That way there’s nothing but zen when your head hits the pillow.

Getting to bed can be difficult, and no matter what you do, there will always be a few late nights. However if you work on your sleep schedule and cut down on those mind stimulating activities, it can get easier. Just do right by your body. Sleep is important.

To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in North Richland Hills, Tex.

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