The use of phones and other mobile devices is becoming more and more common, and especially from bed. This habit may actually have a negative effect on sleep quality.
According to the National Sleep Foundation, “more than 90 percent of Americans regularly use a computer or electronic device of some kind in the hour before bed.” Researchers have found that the “exposure to light from computer tablets significantly lowered levels of the hormone melatonin, which regulates our internal clocks and plays a role in the sleep cycle.”
Those suffering from mild sleep disorders or disturbances may want to consider turning off all electronics prior to bed. Here are some other sleep-supporting habits to try, from Womansday.com:
- Go to bed earlier. As simple as it seems, going to bed earlier can help you get the extra sleep your body craves. Even if you don’t feel tired, try lying down about an hour earlier until you get a full 7-8 hours each night.
- Relieve stress. People with uncontrolled stress are more prone to insomnia. But exercise, meditation, yoga and other techniques can help you relax. Do something to relieve stress each day.
- Let it out. Try to decrease your brain activity before bed by writing down your thoughts in a journal. It will help clear your mind so you can close the book on today and move forward.
- Turn down the lights. It’s more difficult to fall and stay asleep in a room that is too bright. Wear a sleeping mask and close the blinds and curtains to diminish light and set the mood for sleep.
- Relax a little. Schedule some downtime each day for meditative activities like stretching, reading or enjoying a hot bath. This can help you unwind after an intense, stressful day so you’ll sleep more soundly.
- Eat at regular intervals. This keeps your energy and blood sugar levels stable all day long. With fewer highs and lows, you’ll be alert all day and ready to sleep at night.
- Add white noise. Most people can’t fall asleep when it’s too loud. Wear ear plugs to drown out disturbing sounds and turn on “white noise,” like a fan or rain CD, so you can sleep more soundly.