By Eric Stengle
It is common to refer to people who wake up easily from disturbances such as noise or morning sunlight coming into the bedroom as light sleepers. Researchers haven’t determined exactly why people respond differently to disturbances while sleeping. But all sleep experts agree that both the quality and quantity of uninterrupted sleep is critical for your mental, emotional, and physical well-being. Here are 4 great sleeping tips for light sleepers.
- Eliminate distractions with heavy window shades, an eye mask and ear plugs. You can also block out sunlight with some heavy-duty window shades. If you still can’t get your bedroom to stay completely dark until you have to wake up, consider using a contoured eye mask for sleeping. Made from high-density memory foam, these masks are comfortable and easy to use for back sleepers. You can use wax or silicone ear plugs to drown out any bedroom noise, like from a snoring partner. These plugs are safe, comfortable, and will still allow you to hear an alarm clock. If you just can’t get used to ear plugs, try listening to white noise. White noise can help to drown out disturbances.
- Substitute afternoon coffee with herbal tea or juice. Consuming caffeine has some benefits like improved energy levels, an increase in alertness, and better ability to concentrate. But drinking caffeinated beverages in the afternoon or evening can delay the timing of your body’s biological clock and cause you to wake up more easily at night. Try drinking some caffeine-free herbal teas or fresh squeezed juice instead. These healthy drinks are packed with vitamins and antioxidants that will give you natural daytime energy. If you must have a coffee drink, try a decaffeinated one.
- Turn off your phone and all electronics three hours before bedtime. Electronic devices like cell phones, computers, and tablets emit light with a blue wavelength. This can be beneficial during the daytime because blue light boosts attention and mood. But exposing yourself to blue light late in the evening and before bedtime can disrupt your body’s natural sleep rhythm. This is because light with a blue wavelength suppresses the release of melatonin, a hormone produced by the pineal gland that helps regulate the body’s sleep cycles.
- Use aromatherapy for deeper sleep. Burning your favourite essential oil in a diffuser has a natural calming effect on the body, helping you to relax and get better sleep. A few drops of essential oil mixed with a carrier oil like coconut or olive oil can also be directly applied to your feet, wrists, or neck before going to bed. Lavender oil has long been known for its relaxation effects, and research has shown that lavender can increase the amount of slow-wave sleep.
If you regularly have trouble falling asleep, suffer from poor quality sleep, or awaken frequently during the night, you should consult a sleep expert. Our professionals at Family Sleep Diagnostics can give you a consultation and properly diagnose any sleeping disorders that are negatively impacting your lifestyle. Our comprehensive sleep management services also included sleep studies and clinically effective treatment plans. Just request an appointment online or give us a call at (972) 714-0011.