Have you ever woken up feeling like you didn’t have a wink of sleep last night? We’ve all been there before–probably numerous times throughout our lifetime. Our sleep habits have a significant impact on how well we sleep every night. If you are able to maintain a regular schedule while also avoiding behavior that promotes sleep disruption, you can minimize insomnia, allow for an adequate amount of sleep, and reduce sleep-related headaches.

Ready to take charge of your sleep patterns in order to help you wake up feeling refreshed? Let’s take a look at a few tips that will help you create a healthy sleep regimen:

Tired? Go to Bed! 

When it comes to sleep, go to be when you are sleepy and not any earlier. If you attempt to go to bed before you are tired you will promote lying awake in bed, which can teach the brain to be awake in bed. And when you wake up refreshed, get up. Don’t linger in bed for too long. 

It is also important to try to wake up at the same time every day, seven days a week. By maintaining a regular wake up time it will help you fall asleep more easily at night in addition to helping you set your “internal clock.” It is also important to make sure you go to sleep only in bed. By sleeping in other locations at home you might make it more difficult to sleep in your own bed.

Remember: The Bedroom is for Sleep

It is important to use the bedroom only for sleeping and sexual activity. This means you should avoid the following in bed:

  • Reading
  • Watching TV
  • Eating
  • Talking on the phone

You should also avoid lying awake thinking in bed. Do your problem solving elsewhere. And when you go to sleep, cover your clock or place it somewhere you cannot see it. Looking at the clock when you can’t fall asleep or have awakened and can’t get back to sleep will only worsen the problem. 

Exercise daily

Regular daily exercise may help to deepen your sleep. By exercising too close to bedtime, you may disturb sleep. Try to finish exercising at least 3 hours before bedtime or in the morning before you start your day. 

And, with daily exercising you will be burning more calories, which means you might get hungry frequently. To combat this, at a snack! Going to bed hungry can ultimately prevent you from falling asleep. By having a light snack at bedtime you may find that you sleep better. However, avoid having a big meal before bed—stomach and intestinal activity slows down and food is not well digested during sleep. 

Skip the Alcohol and Tobacco

Alcohol might help some people fall asleep at the start of the night, but that sleep will become fragmented, which means you won’t feel well rested. Occasional social use of alcohol in moderate amounts is fine for most people, but regular use or large quantities of drinking may be a significant problem for sleep. Additionally, tobacco of any kind disrupts sleep, so avoid it at all costs. 

A good night’s sleep can make all the difference in your day–especially when sleep apnea is part of the equation. Visit Dr. Sara at AZ Sleep & TMJ Solutions in Scottsdale to learn more about proper  sleep habits and available treatment for combating sleep apnea.