We all dream of comfortably and peacefully drifting off to sleep, staying asleep all night long, and then waking up feeling well rested and rejuvenated – but for many of us, this is not our reality. We either have trouble with one of these aspects of sleep, or all of them, and statistics from the CDC confirm that a third of US adults do not get enough sleep.
Quality sleep is undoubtedly a crucial factor in one’s overall health and is directly tied to physical health, brain health (i.e. decision-making skills, problem-solving abilities), emotional well-being, and day-to-day performance. Just like water and air, you can’t live without it, and lack of sleep is often linked to increased ill-health. There is simply no question that adequate rest is essential to one’s well-being – as this is the time the body rests and, more importantly, the brain repairs and reorganizes itself – and let’s face it, makes you feel human.
Common Sleep Woes
Even though we may know the benefits and necessity of a good night’s sleep – and we desperately try to log those 7-8 hours – falling asleep and staying asleep can evade the best of us. Often times, we feel physically ready to collapse into bed at the end of a busy day, but being mentally ready for a rejuvenating night’s sleep may be another story. When your head hits the pillow, do you start replaying the events of the day, dwelling on tomorrow’s to-do list, or worrying about things you can’t control? At Pharmstrong™, we’ve been there. It can feel impossible to “shut off” your mind and get the recommended 8 hours of rest you know you need for your mental and physical well-being. And screen time further adds to the problem. Scrolling through social media and checking email has become the norm before bed and is not without it’s negative side-effects. Or perhaps it is our physical aches and discomforts preventing us from getting comfortable and drifting off to sleep. We’ve also been there.
It’s certainly different for every individual. But whatever unique factors and circumstances keep you from getting your much needed zzz’s, at Pharmstrong™, we want to help reverse that trend. It is our passion to assist others in living the healthiest lives possible, and helping customers get quality sleep is certainly part of that equation. Therefore, we have compiled some of our best tips for achieving a rejuvenating night’s sleep to share with you:
Aim for a “Clean Sleep” Routine
Although it sounds like a reminder to bathe before slipping into your cool, crisp sheets, the idea of “clean sleep” is more about implementing simple habits into your sleep routine. Just like making small, consistent changes to one’s health and fitness routine can yield great results over time, so can putting some good sleep-inducing practices into action. These include uncomplicated ideas such as:
- Unplugging – Yes put the phone down, close the computer, and shut the TV off. Electronics are almost always involved in “relaxation” these days, but the artificial blue light exposure can disrupt your circadian rhythms (the body’s 24 hour “internal clock”). Instead of telling our minds that it’s time to rest, it sends the opposite message; it can leave us feeling wired.
- Having a Simple Nightly Routine – Kids thrive on routine, and most have a set bedtime schedule because it helps prepare them for sleep. Somehow though, as we become teens and adults, those nightly routines vanish – but they are certainly worth bringing back. It doesn’t have to be complicated. One hour before your ideal bedtime, start queuing your body for sleep: dim the lights, shut off the electronics, start your nightly hygiene routine, and then slip into bed around the same time each night (if possible)… signal to your mind and body that it’s time for sleep.
Physically Prepare Your Body for Rest
While most of us have a tough time getting mentally prepared for sleep, others find it difficult to physically relax. Fatigue from the day sets in and all of a sudden, we cannot get comfortable. We toss back and forth, rearrange the pillows, use the bathroom (again…), and still can’t get comfortable. Sound familiar? If so, try these simple tips:
- Sip a Hot Beverage – Something about breathing in the hot, floral goodness of herbal tea before bed spells relaxation. Let this be the first step to your new nightly routine.
- Take a Hot Bath or Shower – Let the cares of the day melt away by taking a soothing bath or shower before bed. A soak with epsom salts or a long, steamy shower can be so relaxing for the mind and body alike.
- Stretching/Yoga/Massage– After warming up from the inside out with a cup of hot tea and a relaxing bath or shower, do your tired muscles a favor and give them a little TLC with a good stretch or 5 minute yoga session. And follow up with a moisturizing balm – such as our soothing CBD Body Balm – to target any discomfort still present in those achy joints. You’ll be much more comfortable and relaxed crawling into bed having worked out any areas of tension and tightness.
- Turn Down the Temperature – Yes, after all that effort to get warm and cozy, we actually do recommend lowering the thermostat. Lower temperatures help your body produce more melatonin (a.k.a. the sleep hormone) and promote deeper sleep.
Prime Your Mind for Sleep
Sometimes, despite our best efforts to physically prepare for rest, we cannot fall asleep because our minds will not shut off. Worry and stress, and everything in between, keep our minds from relaxing. These simple steps can help:
- Limit Caffeine – Adding caffeine to the mix certainly does not help your sleep efforts. Savor your morning cup (or cups) of joe and then switch to water in the early afternoon. Give your body time to build its “sleep pressure” and resist the urge to sabotage its natural progression towards tiredness.
- Incorporate a “Brain Dump”– Every thought that will potentially keep you up at night – write it down instead. Have pen and paper handy and write down every single thought that comes to mind – particularly any must-do’s for the next day. This is called a “Brain Dump.” Knowing that you no longer have to worry about remembering these items in the morning, as well as journaling your random thoughts, will put your mind at ease.
- Meditation – Further promote feelings of calmness and relaxation with meditation. This simple practice can help lower your heart rate, slow your breathing, and focus your mind – the perfect way to ease into restfulness.
- Reading – To help get your mind off the troubles of the day, reach for a good fiction novel – not one on your electronic device. Remember, the idea is to avoid stimulating blue light. Plus, you may be tempted to check your social media “real quick,” and before you know it, another 30 minutes has gone by.
- Dim the Lights– At the same time you power down your electronics, dim the lights. Work with your body as it naturally “powers down” for the night as well.
- Incorporate Melatonin – If you’ve given all of these tried and true methods a shot, or you just simply want to increase your chances of getting sound sleep, may we suggest this dynamic duo: all natural, Pure + Potent CBD (cannabidiol) plus melatonin. The sleep benefits of melatonin are well known, and the combination of all natural CBD and melatonin together are quite effective.
A good night’s rest is undoubtedly a crucial factor in one’s overall health and, at Pharmstrong™, we have witnessed over and over again the power of adding small, healthy habits into one’s nightly routine. We truly believe that regularly incorporating even a few of our suggestions will make a noticeable and positive difference in your ability to fall asleep, stay asleep, and wake up with the energy you need to tackle the day ahead. For more information on how all natural CBD products can fit into your day-to-day life, particularly your nighttime routine, call or visit us online today. Here’s to wishing you a rejuvenating night’s sleep!