Don’t go to sleep without doing these 4 things!
We all have a pretty standard daily routine, don’t we? Especially during the working week. We wake up to our alarm, fix breakfast, get to work (or the home office) by a set time, do our daily work/life chores, somehow fit in lunch and dinner and possibly some exercise and flop onto the sofa before bed. During most of it, we’re either feeling tired and groggy, or willing for it to be bed time.
But what if we could add in a bit of routine between the sofa flopping and climbing into bed stage? Doing so, with healthy habits, will help to promote restful, restorative sleep, so that our days don’t feel like so much of a struggle.
The concept of good “sleep hygiene” is fairly new, but it’s something that’s always been important. Good sleep hygiene means avoiding a large meal, alcohol and caffeine in the hour or two before bed, having a quiet, cool, clutter-free bedroom and having a routine that signals to your brain that it’s time to settle down and sleep.
Here’s our top four bedtime wind down tips that may help you achieve better quality sleep - and more of it!
- Leave your electronic devices in another room
The blue light emitted from our phones, tablets and laptops mimics part of the UV light spectrum emitted by the sun. Therefore, exposure to it late into the evening can trick our brains into thinking it’s still day time. This subtly disrupts our internal body lock, called our circadian rhythm, by supressing the release of the sleepy hormone, melatonin. This will then prevent us from drifting off into a deep sleep, at a reasonable hour.
So, avoid mindlessly scrolling close to bed time, and avoid bringing your phone and other devices to bed to avoid distraction. If you use your phone as an alarm, invest in an old school electronic alarm clock!
- Cleanse your skin
It can be oh-so tempting to go to sleep in our makeup, and leave it until the morning. But overnight, our skin goes through a process of repair and regeneration. Melatonin not only encourages sleep, it triggers a process whereby the skin cells work to counteract the damage done to our skin during the day from UV light, toxins and environmental pollutants.
If we sleep in our makeup, these processes are hindered, and we could be contributing to dull, prematurely aging or inflamed skin. Even if we don’t wear makeup, we need to thoroughly cleanse our skin to remove the daily dirt and grime that builds up during the day.
- Drink a honey and camomile tea
Camomile is a herb known for it’s soothing, calming properties, making it ideal for a bedtime warming drink. Choose a high quality camomile teabag or loose leaf infusion and add hot, not boiling, water. Leave to steep for a few minutes and add a teaspoon of Necta & Hive Jarrah Honey 10+ TA and drink before going to bed.
- Got a partner? Have a cuddle
Skin on skin contact with another human being that we love, or are at least fond of, releases the “cuddle hormone” oxytocin. Oxytocin makes us feel warm and relaxed, and can even reduce levels of the stress hormone, cortisol and decrease feelings of anxiety. An embrace as you climb into bed can be enough to send you both into the land of nod, allowing you to wake feeling refreshed and ready to face the day.