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sleep school: HOW TO GET TO SLEEP, AND STAY ASLEEP

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TIRED ALL DAY BUT TOSS AND TURN AND CAN’T GET TO SLEEP WHEN YOU GET INTO BED?
Jane Wrigglesworth, Sleep Consultant at How to Sleep Well gives us her top 5 show to get to sleep tips, so you stay asleep…


Get adequate light in the morning

It’s important to get outdoors first thing in the morning to reset your circadian rhythm. Bright light at the start of the day helps to improve sleep, mood, and wellbeing. The circadian rhythm in humans is close to but not exactly 24 hours, so it must be reset each day in order to correlate with the 24-hour environment. This can be achieved through daily exposure to light and darkness. If you don’t get enough light in the morning, the body clock will drift, adding several minutes to its cycle each day. If this continues – meaning, you continue to get inadequate light in the morning – your drive to sleep at night drifts later and later. The light inside our homes is far darker than the natural light outdoors. A brightly lit room, for example, may measure around 300 lux, whereas the outdoors may measure around 10,000 lux in the morning. A lux of at least 1000 is necessary to reset your circadian rhythm.

Dim your lights at night

While exposure to light first thing in the morning is good for sleep in the evening, too much light in the evening can inhibit it. Managing your exposure to light at night is therefore critical to ensuring the natural sleep-wake cycle functions as it should. Light, especially blue light (like the light from cell phones, computers, and the TV) can reduce or delay the production of melatonin (the “sleep hormone”), delaying the onset of sleep. Get into a nightly routine and put all your electronic gadgets aside at least an hour before bedtime. Dim the lights, or use table lamps with low-wattage bulbs, an hour before bedtime as well.

Have your meals at the same time each day

Good diet and exercise are essential for good sleep, but so too is the timing of meals. Having routine mealtimes is critical for maintaining the circadian rhythm. Eat three meals at the same time, or close to the same time, each day. Your body gets used to these times and knows that it has, say, three hours after dinner until sleep. Just as it’s important to establish a consistent sleep schedule, going to bed and getting up at the same time each day, it’s important to establish a consistent mealtime schedule.

Eat plenty of tryptophan

Boost your diet with vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that support serotonin. Foods high in tryptophan, an essential amino acid, are particularly important, as tryptophan is necessary for the synthesis of serotonin, which is a precursor to melatonin. When limited amounts of tryptophan are consumed, reduced amounts of serotonin, melatonin, niacin and other important molecules can lead to sleep disorders as well as depression. Foods particularly high in tryptophan include oats, nuts, seeds (especially pumpkin and sunflower seeds), red meat, chicken, pork, fish, tofu, milk, and eggs.

Try a weighted blanket

If you are feeling stressed or anxious, a weighted blanket may help to calm your mind. These special blankets can help some people who suffer from insomnia as well as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or autism spectrum disorder – all mental health issues that can disturb sleep. Weighted blankets work in a similar way to deep touch pressure therapy – the pressure on the body can increase the release of serotonin in the brain, which can lead to a sense of calm and wellbeing, aiding sleep.

We’re loving Cuddle Buddy’s Weighted Blanket, it’s really helped us to get to sleep, see below for details…

ABOUT CUDDLY BUDDY’S WEIGHTED BLANKETS:

How do I use a weighted blanket?
You can either use the blanket on its own in bed or on the couch. You can also have it over or under a doona – just see what you like best!

What are Cuddly Buddy’s blankets made from?
They are produced from really high-quality materials. The inner cover is made from 100% bamboo and the filling is 100% glass beads. Cuddle Buddy’s Weighted Blanket features an incredibly soft mink cover so if it gets a little warm you can remove the cover and the inner’s bamboo cotton lining will keep you cool as a cucumber.

Why is there only single size dimensions?
The weighted blanket works best as a single size. This is because the distribution of the weight will be most effective being used by one person. If a bigger size was made, for it to be effective the weight would have to be distributed for a second person, and a blanket of 20kg+ can pose safety problems.

For more details CLICK HERE