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Wake up to a better self

Sleep is as vital to our well being as the food and water we consume. Many people suffer from insomnia and cannot pinpoint why. They watch relaxing shows before bed, browse social media, catch up on their favorite novel and gossip, have a drink and still cannot fall asleep. This is where good sleep hygiene is key. Take a look at some sleep hygiene tips to see if you are meeting the requirements for a restful night:

Napping too much? Try to limit daytime naps to 20-30 minutes to improve mood, alertness and performance.
Avoid stimulants such as caffeine and nicotine close to bedtime.
Use a sound machine such as the Dohm, which creates white noise, to drown out the sounds around you.
There’s something to be said about the relaxing feel you get at a spa, try and recreate it with Lavender essential oils.
Ask your doctor about Safe sleep aides.
Foods rich in protein and tryptophan help increase the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin. Try some chicken, turkey, milk, dairy, nuts.
There’s something to be said about the strict bedtime routines kids have growing up. Going to bed at the same time each night primes your brain and body to anticipate winding down.
Keep your bedroom dark and cool with blackout curtains.
Make sure your bed knows its role: for sex and sleep only, avoid other activities such as reading, eating or watching tv in bed.
Limit screen time before going to bed, put those phones, tablets, laptops away and turn the TV off.

Wishing you a restful night.

Dr. Yana Bekker, DO Dr. Bekker is a board certified Psychiatrist in private practice in Park Slope, Brooklyn, NY.

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