Nowadays, it seems like there is never enough time in the day. We try to do as much as possible, and we often find ourselves making sacrifices that we regret later. Our days are full of obligations and commitments, and these can sometimes keep us up at night. Alternatively sleep disorders are prevalent, and can make it difficult, if not impossible, to get a good night’s rest.
Fortunately, poor sleep quality doesn’t have to be permanent. There are many different ways to have a better sleep experience every night — and SONU is one of them.
The SONU Sleep System features the patented negative space Comfort Channel that allows you to immerse your arm and shoulder into the bed, and Support Pillows for optimal head and neck comfort. From upper torso relief to spine alignment and relieved shoulder pressure, SONU can help you achieve an unforgettable sleeping experience.
Read on to find out what you can do to make bedtime a breeze.
1. Establish Healthy Habits
One of the most important things you can do to improve your sleep experience is establish good sleeping habits. For example, eating heavy meals right before bedtime could interfere with your sleep by leaving you feeling uncomfortable and bloated.
Here are some other ways that creating healthier habits help you fall asleep faster:
Exercise During the Day
Exercise is essential because it uses energy and helps your body relax. While both of these aspects are helpful when falling asleep, you should try not to exercise just before bedtime, as this could energize your body instead of tiring it out.
Get Into a Routine Before Bed
Creating a sleeping routine, also known as practicing good sleep hygiene, can be helpful because you will have a set time to wind down and prepare for sleep.
A bedtime routine could consist of calming activities at night such as reading a book, meditating, or writing in a journal before settling in on your SONU Top Pillow Deluxe. These daily rituals can be as short as just 15-30 minutes, and can be enough to assist with bedtime.
Wake Up at the Same Time Every Day
If possible, go to bed and wake up around the same time every day to build a consistent sleep schedule.
This could help your internal clock (or circadian rhythms) become more regularized, leading to an easier time falling asleep every night. It's also a good idea to ensure that you get plenty of light exposure during the day, as this practice could positively contribute to your sleep cycle.
When you go to sleep and wake up at the same time every day, your body will start to know when it should be sleepy. In practicing this, your body's internal clock will eventually catch up with how much sleep it needs, allowing you to sleep better at night even without an alarm.
Try Not To Nap
Naps are great for people who need them, and can benefit sleep restoration. However, if you have trouble falling asleep at night, napping during the day may make this even more challenging.
Napping resets your body's internal clock so that it thinks it should wake up even when you're trying to go to bed. This makes it harder for you to get up in the morning because your body is already used to sleeping while it's still dark outside.
If you are trying to fall asleep more quickly, make an effort not to take any naps during the day. That way, your body can begin staying on track with its natural rhythms.
Take a Warm Shower or Warm Bath
Some people find that taking a warm shower before bed helps them relax and fall asleep more easily. Utilizing warm water in this method is especially helpful for stressful times when muscle tension has built up during the day.
You can add aromatherapy to your experience as well by using essential oils like lavender or chamomile. These oils are known for their relaxing properties, and they may help you fall asleep faster.
2. Eat a Healthier Diet
Eating a healthier diet is one of the best things you can do for your body and mind. When you eat nutritious foods, you feel better both physically and mentally.
There are many different ways to eat a healthier diet, and the best approach is to find a method that works for you and your lifestyle. Some people prefer to follow a specific diet plan, while others prefer to make healthier choices on their own. Regardless of your approach, eating healthy foods can help you get better sleep.
Here are some general tips for eating a healthier diet that everyone should follow.
Eat Dinner Earlier
Now that we've talked about eating right, let's talk about portion size. Eating a large meal at night can make it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep due to digestive processes.
Having your meals earlier in the day helps your body digest your food before bedtime. This can also assist you in avoiding the temptation of snacking late while watching TV.
Choose Healthier Foods
With mealtime arranged, try to fill your plate with more fruits and vegetables during the day. These foods are packed with nutrients and antioxidants that help keep your body healthy.
Next, attempt to avoid processed foods with added sugar as much as possible. These foods are high in calorie-dense fats and sugars, which can cause weight gain and lead to health problems over time. Sugary sweets and snacks can also end up energizing you before bed — which is the exact opposite of what you want.
Avoid Caffeine Before Bed
Another thing that you can do to improve your sleep is to avoid caffeine and alcohol before bed. Limiting caffeine intake is especially important if you have difficulty sleeping. Avoiding caffeine or consuming less of it can help you fall asleep faster because it reduces your body's stimulation levels.
Avoid Alcohol Before Bedtime
Consuming alcohol before bedtime can also interfere with your sleep patterns by impacting the amount of time you spend in each sleep cycle during the night. While consuming small amounts of alcohol might not affect your sleep, we don’t recommend drinking more than one or two drinks before bed.
If your sleep quality is suffering, you may want to avoid alcohol completely to get better rest at night. Overall, both caffeine and alcohol are stimulants, meaning they can keep you awake instead of helping you to fall asleep.
If you find that you're having trouble falling asleep, you can try avoiding caffeine and alcohol for a few weeks and see if that makes a difference.
3. Stress Reduction
Stress is one of the biggest challenges that people face today. It can have a very negative effect on your sleep cycle. When you experience stress, your body's natural reaction is to release cortisol into your bloodstream.
Cortisol is meant to provide extra energy so that you can escape from stressful situations more easily. However, when cortisol levels are elevated for extended periods, they can affect other parts of your body as well. Since cortisol can be very stimulating to your body, high stress levels can keep you awake for longer. This can make it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.
You can help reduce stress during the day by practicing relaxation techniques. Some good options for relaxation techniques include listening to music, meditating, or practicing simple deep breathing exercises. You can also try spending time with friends and family to reduce stress levels.
It doesn’t stop there — there are plenty more methods of keeping your stress in check. Here are a few of the most common, and how you can approach them.
Getting a Massage
Massages are a great way to reduce stress levels. Not only do they feel good, but they also help to relax the mind and body, meaning they may help you fall asleep more easily.
There are many different types of massage, but one popular option is the Swedish massage. The Swedish massage uses long strokes and deep pressure to relax the muscles. It is a gentle and relaxing massage that still provides some therapeutic benefits.
Getting a massage can help ease mental and physical tension and allow you to unwind and fall asleep easier.
A great way to relax is to read something calming. This could be a book, magazine, or even the latest from the SONU Sleep blog. You'll find that reading may help you relax and fall asleep quickly.
Plus, that good book can help take your mind off stressful thoughts that keep you up at night. Reading allows your mind to focus on the words in front of you rather than the stressful thoughts keeping you awake.
One of the best ways to soothe your mind and body before bedtime is to practice yoga. Yoga combines stretching and breathwork in order to soothe tension, get moving, and relax your body and mind.
There are many different types of yoga, but one method is hatha yoga — a gentle form of yoga that focuses on poses meant to stretch and relax your muscles. Try a time-honored favorite position called the child's pose for sleeping.
This yoga pose is a restorative pose great for stretching the lower back and calming the mind before bedtime. When you practice the child's pose, you should sit on your heels with your toes tucked under you. Then, place your arms on the floor at shoulder height with your palms facing down. Finally, lower your forehead to touch the floor and let your body relax completely.
Many people find that yoga is a great way to fall asleep faster. Not only does yoga help muscles relax, but it can also help clear your mind. Similar to meditation in many ways, practicing yoga also increases flexibility and blood flow throughout your body.
4. Relaxation Techniques
Stress reduction and relaxation techniques can go hand in hand. While we touched on some popular methods of managing stress, some relaxation techniques can help you unwind even further.
The purpose of practicing meditation is to decrease your heart rate and slow down your breathing. Once your body is in this more relaxed state, it can become easier for you to fall asleep. Many different types of meditation exist, including mindfulness meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, and yoga Nidra, and you may want to try a few different methods.
Another relaxation technique is called breath counting. Breathe counting requires you to focus on your breathing until you reach a state of calmness before falling asleep.
The process begins by taking ten deep breaths and slowly exhaling for about half the time you spent inhaling. For example, if you inhale for ten seconds, you should exhale for five seconds.
When you get down to one breath, start over at ten again until you feel relaxed. Practice this exercise every night for the best results.
5. Setting Up the Ideal Bedtime Environment
Your environment can also impact your ability to fall asleep. When its time to crawl into bed, making a feel small changes to your environment may help you get a more restful sleep.
Keep Your Bedroom Dark, Quiet, and Cool
If you're having trouble falling asleep, try making these changes to your bedroom environment and see if that helps.
- Changing or buying new sheets to keep you feeling cool and comfortable.
- Lower the thermostat to keep your room cool.
- Investing in blackout curtains so there is no light coming in through your windows.
- Wearing warm socks instead of summer pajamas during the winter months to regulate your core body temperature.
- Trying different pillows, mattresses, and other bedding to see what you like best. A comfortable mattress can make a world of difference.
If your bedroom is too uncomfortable or not conducive to relaxation, you probably won't fall asleep. Make an effort to keep your room updated, clean, and comfortable to help you sleep better at night.
It is just as important to make sure your bedding is working with you, not against you. Many conventional mattresses can result in excess pressure on your back, shoulders, and arms — especially for side sleepers. That’s why SONU features innovative negative space technology and head and neck support thanks to our Support Pillows.
Put Away Your Electronics
When it comes to electronic devices, many people use their smartphones and laptops right up until they go to bed. However, blue light is emitted from electronic devices whenever you use them. It tricks your brain into thinking that it's daytime and can prevent melatonin production in the brain.
Melatonin is the natural hormone responsible for regulating your sleep cycles and general body rhythms. People with certain circadian rhythm disorders or other conditions, like autism, ADD, insomnia, depression, or anxiety, may have an imbalance of melatonin that makes it hard to sleep.
To avoid disrupting your natural sleep cycle, try not to use any electronics for 30 minutes (to one hour) before going to bed at night. This rule also applies if you typically wake up very early and want to nap during the day. In both cases, you should give yourself some time away from blue light technology before trying to fall asleep again.
Silence Smart Device and Phone Notifications
Another thing you can do to improve your sleep is to put your phone on airplane mode. This will help you avoid the temptation to check your phone late at night and ensure notifications don’t wake you during the night.
White Noise Machines
White noise can help some people fall asleep by blocking out background noises that keep them awake. If your partner snores or if there are other loud outside noises? Then try listening to white noise on a fan (or an app) before going to bed.
6. Write It Down
As a rule, when you're trying to sleep, you’ll want to relax and clear your mind. Try not to think about current events. Also, aim to read the news in the morning instead of at night. Other things that can help you fall asleep easier are:
Create a Sleep Diary
Creating a sleep diary can be a helpful way to track your sleep habits and see if there are any patterns. It can also be helpful to track things like how tired you feel during the day, your mood, and how well you're sleeping.
You can create a sleep diary by hand or use a digital app. If you're having trouble falling asleep, try tracking your sleep habits as well for a few weeks. Your notes will allow you to see your nighttime patterns and changes.
List Your Worries and Tasks Before Bedtime
It's important to review your list of tasks before bed so that you're not thinking about them when you're trying to sleep. Grab your notepad, and write down your worries. Outline your tasks for the next day. This simple new habit can help you relax and may make it easier to fall asleep afterward.
7. Don't Work in Your Bedroom or Bed
One of the best things you can do to improve your sleep is to avoid working or watching TV in bed. Should you work from home, make sure that work is done at your desk.
When you're in bed, your body should be associating it with sleep, not work or entertainment. Take a few weeks to keep your bed for sleeping, and you'll be able to see if that makes a difference.
Ready To Fall Asleep Faster?
Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep can impair your ability to complete daily tasks. When sleep is evading you, there are many techniques you can try in order to fall asleep more easily.
Stress management, relaxation practices, and maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle are just a few ways that you can make it easier to fall asleep. It may take a process of trial and error to find something that works for you, but it will all be worth it when you finally get the good night’s sleep you deserve.
If you are finding it hard to rest at night because your old mattress just isn’t providing you with the comfort you deserve, the SONU Sleep System can help you enjoy an unforgettable sleeping experience. With free shipping, a 100-day trial, and a 5-year warranty, SONU is here to help you get to sleep.
Sleeping Tips to Help You Fall Asleep Fast | Sleep Association
4 Simple Steps to Get You Back to Sleep Fast | Cleveland Clinic