Featured image: AsYouLikeItStudio Pure Organic Mulberry Silk Pillowcase – £21

Sleeping is an essential part of all of our lives. Whether it’s a quick 20-minute nap or a 7-hour snooze, it is necessary that we get enough sleep to help our bodies and brains recharge. But with all the doom and gloom surrounding the pandemic, having a good night’s sleep is feeling more and more difficult to obtain for many of us.

Here are a few tips and tricks to help you get a better night’s sleep…

Meditation

Meditating is a great way to get your body to relax and help relieve the stress of the day. It is time that is just for you; no distractions whatsoever. Even if it’s just for a few minutes, meditating helps clear your mind, making it easier for you to fall asleep as it slows down the heart rate and encourages slower breathing.

Meditation apps like headspace have guided-meditation exercises, tools and techniques that will help you drift off in no time. 

Stretch before bed

A lot of us are cooped up in front of a computer all day watching lectures or doing work, so we spend a lot of our day sat down or slouched over. Doing a few stretches before you go to sleep will help release the tension built up in your muscles and bones from sitting hunched over all day. Even if this isn’t the case for you, stretching is a great way to help relax your muscles and aid blood flow, allowing your body to loosen up before going to sleep. 

The Youtube channel Yoga with Adriene has some amazing wind-down, before-bed yoga routines for you to try! 

Create a night-time routine

By creating a night-time routine, you’re telling your body and mind that it’s time to shut off. The routine can start whenever you have finished your daily business, however, it is recommended that you start it a couple of hours before you plan on going to sleep. 

Start with reducing your exposure to screens, as the blue light decreases the amount of melatonin released during the night-time, making it harder for you to fall asleep. Pick up a book or magazine, or have a chat to friends or family, and do something that doesn’t require sitting in front of a screen. 

Next, have a warm beverage. The heat from the drink will cause your body to feel warm and cosy (feelings that are associated with sleep). Then, do your nightly cleansing routine, brushing teeth, having a bath etc. Performing actions that you associate with getting ready for bed will tell your brain and body what’s coming next. Finally, get into bed. When doing so, maybe continue reading that book before turning the light straight off and going to sleep. 

Go out for a walk during the day

Yes, this one is about what you do in the day, rather than at night! Going for a walk during the day or after you’ve finished work can be really beneficial when it comes to sleeping well, as the exposure to fresh air and walking makes the body feel tired and relaxed, and will help clear your head as you are away from all the distractions in your house. Also, staying in the house all day can get rather cabin fever-ish, so it’s good to get out and stretch your legs. 

Bangor is full of hidden gems for you to go out an explore, discover them here.

Avoid napping during the day 

This one is probably easier said than done, but try to avoid napping during the day if you find it hard to sleep at night. Imagine you have a ‘sleep-o-meter’ during the day, and as you do all your tasks, your sleep-o-meter slowly falls down until you hit the bottom. When you sleep at night, your sleep-o-meter will be filled back up. However, when you nap during the day, you aren’t letting your sleep-o-meter reach the bottom, and instead you’re adding to it, so when it comes to the end of the day when you want to go to sleep, your sleep-o-meter still has energy in it, which will keep you awake. 

By pushing yourself to stay awake and only sleep during the night, your body will have less energy at night and be ready to fall asleep. 

Don’t drink caffeine before bed 

Drinking caffeinated drinks like tea or coffee before bed is not an effective way of putting yourself to sleep. Sleeping is the time for the body to naturally replenish, creating energy for the next day. If you drink a coffee or an energy drink before bed, this will increase stimulation and reduce your likelihood of getting a good night’s rest. If you want a drink, try having a glass of water or some herbal tea, or something else that won’t spike your energy levels.

Some of the best bed-time drinks (in our opinion!), include Yorkshire Tea Bedtime Brew, Cadbury Highlights Milk Choc Drink, and Twinings Pure Camomile Tea. 

Get comfy

Being comfortable is majorly important to ensuring you get a good night’s sleep. If you are not comfortable, your body won’t relax, and you won’t drift off into slumber. Or if you do fall asleep, you may wake up with a crick in your neck or a sore back. 

If you’re living in halls, we recommend you invest in a mattress topper! The halls beds can feel very springy and uncomfortable if this isn’t what you’re used to at home, so a topper will help it feel comfy and soft. 

If you live in private accommodation and have to buy your own mattress, Dreams have a handy guide on how you can find the right mattress for you, depending on your preferences and usual sleep position. 

Lastly, for maximum bed-time comfort, make sure don’t have too many or too few pillows on your bed. Sleeping with one fewer pillow than usual every so often can help your body with the alignment of the spine. Just make sure you don’t cause any damage or discomfort to your sciatic nerve. 

Get the room temperature right

This is an individual preference, however, keeping your room cool as you sleep is a known way of helping you drift off better. Your body is able to regulate its temperature more easily than if the room were hot – and there’s nothing worse than having a stuffy, hot room where you can’t cool down and end up sweating all night – it’s just not nice! 

Invest in some sleep products! 

Our first recommendation for a good night’s sleep is a silk pillowcase. Although they won’t help you get to sleep any quicker, they work wonders for the quality of your skin and hair, which will make you feel amazing when you wake up!

Thomas and Guy 100% Pure Mulberry Silk Pillow Case

AsYouLikeItStudio Pure Organic Mulberry Silk Pillowcase – £21

Thomas and Guy and AsYouLikeItStudio are two lovely UK-based Etsy sellers who sell 100% Mulberry-silk pillowcases at affordable prices.

Other products that make a perfect gift to yourself or someone you love, include: NEOM Perfect Night’s Sleep On The Go Collection – £26 @ asos 

Sanctuary Spa Night Time Sleep Mist – £5 @ Superdrug 

Sleepy Body Lotion – £16 @ Lush

This Works deep sleep heavenly candle 220g – £26 @ asos 

Now that you have an arsenal of tips to help you fall asleep, we hope tonight’s is the best night’s sleep you’ve ever had!

Nos da xx

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