A good night's sleep is very important. Some people have a difficult time sleeping. While medications and supplements can help, there are many things you can do without taking anything to help you get a good night sleep. I was recently intervied in Real Simple about some of these habits.
- Don't ditch your sleep schedule, consistency is important.
- Limit evening light exposure and stay away from the blue light at night. Don't surf the Internet, read emails, or even go on social media right before bed. The idea is to quiet the mind before bedtime.
- Keep your room temperature between 65 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Avoid caffeine 8 hours before bed.
- Avoid alcohol 3 hours before bed.
- Don’t watch TV or even read in bed. You can do this in the bedroom in a chair if you can't do this in another room, but never in bed. You need to ‘train’ your brain that the bed is only for sleeping.
- Never leave the TV on to help you fall asleep.
- If you are in bed and having difficulty falling asleep for more than 15 to 20 minutes, get out of bed. Don't lay there and ruminate. Do something to help relax and unwind and then try going back to sleep.
Matthew L. Mintz, MD, FACP