Getting a good night’s sleep is so important in ensuring we get the most out of the following day. What you do for the hour leading up to bedtime can have a serious impact on how long it takes you to drift off, as well as the quality of the sleep you get.
If getting a good night's sleep is often challenging for you, then here are some night time no-no’s for you to avoid to help you get the most out of your evening shut eye.
Bright screens - This means watching TV, using your computer, or skimming through FB on your phone. Studies show that the blue light that is emitted from the screen actually interferes with your melatonin production. Melatonin is a substance produced in the brain that is responsible for making you feel sleepy.
Alcohol - You might enjoy a little night cap in the evening to help you wind down, however drinking too much, or too close to your bed time will interfere with the quality of sleep you get!
Stimulants - Drinking tea and coffee before bed is an obvious ‘no-no’ as the caffeine will stimulate your brain and make it difficult to go to sleep. Interestingly enough it is also unadvisable to drink decaffeinated coffee or tea before bed because they still contain trace amounts of caffeine.
Exercise - Working out close to bedtime is usually fine, however if you do a HIIT workout, then lie down expecting to doze off, you might find that your body is too pumped to shut down. Sure you might feel like resting, but all those extra endorphins pumping through you are likely to increase the time it takes for you to drift off.
Overload your brain - It is not a good idea to start working on a project, or open up a work email just before sleep time, as this will stimulate your brain and have you focusing on work related stuff instead of winding down and relaxing ready for sleep.
Eat rich foods - It is not a great idea to eat a large meal within an hour and a half of going to bed as your body needs time to digest it before it shuts down and goes into sleep mode. It is also not a good idea to eat spicy or fatty foods too close to bedtime as these may have a negative impact on your digestive system which will interfere with the quality of sleep you get.