Top 10 Factors For Great Sleep
The Better Sleep Council reminds everyone that there are 10 important factors to keep in mind that will benefit the quality of your sleep. It's important to make an overall commitment to healthy, restorative sleep. Observing the following will promote a healthy sleep cycle and help ensure the best night's rest:
• Makesleep a priority by keeping a consistent sleep (bedtime) and wake schedule, including weekends
• Create a bedtime routine that is relaxing. Experts recommend reading a book, listening to soothing music or soaking in a hot bath.
• Transform your bedroom into a haven of comfort. Create a room that is dark, quiet, comfortable and cool for the best possible sleep.
• Evaluate your mattress and pillow to ensure proper comfort and support. If your mattress is five to seven years old, it may be time for a new one. In general, pillows should be replaced every year.
• Keep work materials, computers and televisions out of the bedroom; it should be used for sleep and sex only.
• Exercise regularly, but complete workouts at least two hours before bedtime.
• If you sleep with a partner, your mattress should allow each of you enough space to move easily. Couples who've been sleeping on a "double" (full size) may think they have enough room, until they learn that each person has only as much sleeping space as a baby's crib!
• Avoid nicotine (e.g., cigarettes, tobacco products). Used close to bedtime, it can lead to poor sleep.
• Avoid caffeine and alcohol (e.g., coffee, tea, soft drinks, chocolate) close to bedtime. It can keep you awake.
• Finish eating at least two to three hours before bedtime.
CREATE A SLEEP SANCTUARY
As stress from economic anxiety mounts, the Better Sleep Council and the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) have joined forces to help consumers enjoy a stress-less, good night's sleep. In order to get the best rest possible and help relieve stress, the BSC and CRN say it's essential for Americans to make a commitment to a healthy lifestyle.
"When you're stressed, and similarly when you are tired, every aspect of your waking life is affected, from work to personal relationships and even concentration," says BSC spokesperson and lifestyle expert Lissa Coffey.
TIP #1 - Create a sleep sanctuary: Your bedroom should be a soothing space, conducive to relaxation and indulgent comfort.
- Commit to getting seven to eight hours of sleep a night and keep a consistent sleep-wake schedule.
- Keep the room dark, quiet, comfortable, cool and clutter-free—that also means keeping work materials, computers and televisions out of the bedroom.
- Choose the right mattress for your needs—a quality, comfortable, supportive and correct-sized mattress, is key to healthy sleep. For example, two people sharing a bed should select a queen or king-sized mattress that allows room to move easily.
- Evaluate your mattress regularly—experts recommend that you evaluate and consider replacing your mattress every five to seven years, sooner if the mattress shows signs of wear, such as lumps or sagging.