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6 effective bedtime routines for a good night’s sleep

6 effective bedtime routines for a good night’s sleep

Having trouble getting enough sleep at night? It can be frustrating when you lay awake, wondering why you can’t fall asleep. The wondering alone just makes it harder to fall asleep. 

It’s believed that 30% of adults suffer from the inability to fall asleep, so you’re not alone. The problem has impacts on your health, your job performance, relationships, and happiness. So we set out to find out the best sleep routine, and we put together a list of smart bedtime habits. We hope they will help you develop healthy sleep habits if counting sheep hasn’t helped you fall asleep faster.

# 1 Ditch the tech & blue light

It is well documented that scrolling through your phone or answering late-night emails decreases your ability to shut off your brain before bedtime. This is due to a few things. Number one is the blue light factor. It has been proven that the blue light that radiates from electronic devices such as phones, laptops, televisions, and tablets is a type of light that our brains interpret as daylight. This stimulates and changes hormones in the brain, making it difficult to drift into sleep mode when our brain still thinks it’s daytime!

Here are a few other helpful things to help minimize the effect of blue light:

  • Try keeping the bedroom a technology-free zone at least an hour before bed to counteract the tech and blue light issue. This gives you time to unwind and block unnecessary distractions. 
  • Use dim red lights for night lights – the red wavelength is the safest for sleep health. You can also change your lightbulb for a Low Blue Light Bulb.
  • Set up “Night Shift” on your device, or download a special blue-blocking app for your computer, phone, and tablet. And as much as possible, avoid looking at screens before going to sleep!
  • Expose yourself to plenty of bright light during the day, which will boost your ability to sleep at night, as well as your mood and alertness during daylight.

 

# 2 Set the ambiance 

Having bedtime rituals or a pre-sleep routine to follow before sleeping can help you release the day’s tensions and signal to your body that it’s time to get ready for sleep. One great ritual is to use aromatherapy to set a relaxing ambiance every night. Diffusers and essential oils give off amazing smells as well as provide some humidity to dry air.

If it’s summer or you live in a humid environment, try a lavender-filled eye pillow. The smell of lavender is known to relax and bring on sleep! The dreamy scent has been shown to calm the mind, slow the heart rate, and decrease blood pressure. 

Another great idea is to try spooning with your partner (or pillow)! Spooning before sleep helps increase “feel-good hormones” and allows us to feel comforted and supported. Also, try making it a habit to drink a glass of water before bed, with maybe even a few drops of CBD. This helps you stay hydrated during sleep, and CBD has been shown to decrease anxiety.

 

#3 Warm shower helps you fall asleep

When it comes to tips to improve your sleep, a warm shower can really aid in the process. Body temperature plays an integral part in regulating your circadian rhythm, which communicates to the body when to feel sleepy or alert. Throughout the day, our body naturally warms up and begins to cool down in the evenings. A warm shower can aid in this cool down process. While the water may initially warm you up, when you towel off, the evaporation of moisture leads to your skin cooling, and research has shown this can facilitate the onset of sleep. Some doctors even suggest that this could help with insomnia as the shower will artificially raise and lower your temperature mimicking the natural process of the circadian rhythm.  

  • Shower water temperature for a great sleep

The perfect temperature recommended by doctors and dermatologists is lukewarm! That’s right, those steamy hot showers are not what the doctor ordered. 

Very hot showers can take the oil off your skin, causing irritation and dryness. Lukewarm means just steamy enough to act as a natural decongestant. The steam can help you breathe easier at night and is particularly important for those with asthma or allergies. You are even less likely to snore or have disrupted sleep if you shower at night. 

Doctors also recommend showers take only between 5-10 minutes—any longer, and there is a higher chance of getting dry skin. For those of us who can’t bear to give up our hot showers, even making only a few of your showers lukewarm each week can positively impact the health of your skin. Thankfully there is also a silver lining to this in that shorter, cooler showers are much more gentle on our environment

TIP: If you’re looking for the right time and place to start a daily meditation practice, your shower could be a great place to start. The shower can be a good place to meditate as it forces you to be away from interruptions like your phone and just be in your body, feeling the temperature of the water. 

 

#4 Write it down to improve your sleep

Ever find that your mind is racing before you fall asleep? Maybe the stresses of work or personal woes are on your mind? It’s helpful to keep a journal and write down everything at least two hours before you fall asleep, clear your mind, and prepare for sleep. 

Writing three full pages a day in a notebook has been shown to improve creativity and help you sleep better, as you are clearing your mind of all the “junk” that has been building up. It doesn’t matter what you write – a journal about your day, problems you face at work, creative ideas that have been brewing, or about that disagreement you had with your partner. Write it down and get it off your mind. You’ll be surprised about how much better you feel! 

 

#5 Practice breathing to sleep faster

Slow, controlled breathing has been proven to help relax the body and mind, putting you into a sleep-ready state. Focused deep breathing is a vital aspect of meditation. It will help to center yourself, and it’s a smart bedtime habit to help you fall asleep faster. 

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To do this, get into a comfortable position and turn all of your attention to your natural breathing pattern. Feel the air enter and leave your nose. You want to be breathing from your diaphragm, not your chest. If your mind drifts, try to focus your attention back on your breathing. You can also visualize your breath entering and circulating through your body before allowing it to exit with all the day’s built-up tension. 

By making deep breathing a regular practice, it will also help you breathe slower during the daytime. Slow, deep breathing all day helps to keep us in a calm state, can increase energy levels, and make you more mindful of your body.

 

#6 Prep your bed with soft, comfy, eco-friendly fabric

Choosing bedding that you look forward to crawling into is critical. Not only will it have you looking forward to bed, it will have you deep breathing in comfort once you’re under the sheets. 

Soft, comfortable, breathable sheets that are kind to your skin, such as Bamboo Sateen Sheets, will have you sound asleep in no time. CleanBamboois also thermoregulating, which means it adjusts temperature to optimize your comfort. heat and is one of the coolest sheets on earth! You’ll be catching zzzz’s in no time. 

 

For more bedtime tips, check out our blog post 3 Easy Homemade Recipes Are Great Facials For Glowing Skin.

 

Sleeping Dog on Ettitude Sheets

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