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What Are the Best Tips for Sleep Self-Help?

By Patrick Lynch
Updated May 17, 2024
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Very few adults come anywhere near the eight hours of sleep per night required to function normally during the day. Sleep self-help tips include keeping the bedroom at a certain temperature, having a night-time routine, and avoiding stimulants and liquids. These tips cost nothing to follow and only require a small modicum of self-discipline.

The importance of sleep is seldom understated, yet it is estimated that around 25% of adult men and women worldwide suffer from some form of insomnia. Without a good night’s sleep on a consistent basis, it is hard to concentrate on basic tasks during waking hours. These sleep self-help tips can help in getting enough sleep to get through the day.

One of the most frequently ignored sleep self-help tips involves keeping the bedroom temperature at a certain level. Various medical studies have shown that the ideal bedroom temperature is between 18-21 degrees Celsius (64.4-69.8 degrees Fahrenheit). When it is too warm, a person cannot sleep because the room is too stuffy. Likewise, a room that is too cold will cause the occupant to shiver. Experimenting with the room temperature to find out what works best is a good idea.

Another common sleep self-help tip that is often forgotten is the practice of establishing a specific time to go to bed and wake up. It is vitally important to establish this routine as a means of getting the body accustomed to a set sleeping pattern. This is akin to setting a body clock which goes off at the same time each day and night. After a few weeks, this pattern will cause the body to be tired at the same time each night and hopefully aid in getting restful sleep.

It is essential to avoid stimulants like caffeine and nicotine at least three hours before going to bed. Drinking coffee or energy drinks and smoking cigarettes near bedtime is not conducive to a good night’s sleep. Sleep self-help involves checking the labels of all products to ensure they don’t contain stimulants. Even sugary soda drinks should be avoided at all costs.

One of the main causes for sleep problems is drinking too many fluids before bedtime. Drinking any form of liquid less than two hours before bedtime can result in sleep disruption. Doing so creates an urgency to urinate in the middle of the night, causing a sleeper to wake. It can then be difficult to get back to sleep. This interruption can cost several hours worth of sleep in a night.

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