Your messed-up sleep routine and how to get it back on track
When the pandemic occurred, it brought a whirlwind with it. Day was night and night was day. Nobody had any routine to speak of and no sleep cycle whatsoever. Soon after, we tried to get it back on track, some of us even succeeded while some struggled. But even then, it soon got derailed again. Once again, the day was night and the night was day until it was time to get back on track again. Some understood the importance of routine and sleep cycle themselves while others were forced by family or friends to fix it. What some people may not realize or even know of is that a messed-up sleep cycle affects your mental and physical health. In a small way right now but a possibly major way in the long run.
Sleep deprivation can cause you to feel irritable and exhausted in the short term while also leaving you with dark circles and acne on your ace. But it can also cause long-term consequences such as heart diseases, type-2 diabetes, depression, etc.
You must have noticed that it’s sometimes hard to sleep when you’re stressed. The tossing and turning and discomfort caused by stress doesn’t leave your mind at peace. However, it is also true that if you’re unable to sleep well and are tossing and turning quite frequently then you won’t be able to handle stress either that may occur in the distant future. This is because mood changes like irritability and anger due to lack of sleep can make it much harder for you to cope with stress or tension of even the smallest amount. Daily hassles can turn into major reasons o frustration. In fact, poor sleep itself can turn into a major source of stress. So, you see how it’s a vicious cycle? You shouldn’t let this devil of insomnia enter into your life or else it’s soon turn into this vicious circle we just discussed about.
Sleep is essential for the physical upkeep of the body, but it also helps maintain cognitive skills, such as attention, learning, memory, and emotional regulation. The latest discoveries about the importance of sleep for physical and mental well-being come at a time when technology is putting pressure on sleep time as never before. Social media, the internet, TV on demand, and video games are increasingly keeping us from our beds in the evenings. This is why creating a bedtime routine is important.
What is a bedtime routine?
Humans are creatures of habit and just like any other routine, you should also instill a bedtime routine so that your brain develops a habit of sleeping at a particular time. By doing the same activities every night, your brain perceives those activities as a precursor to sleep. Bed time routines also help in curbing anxiety and stress.
What things to avoid to help sleep better?
1) Cut off caffeine early
Try not to consume caffeine post noon. We know how a post- lunch brew may help spend the day easier but it can have consequences. Having caffeine even 6 hours before you sleep can disrupt your rest. It would be better if you stuck to beverages sans caffeine post lunch
2) Avoid strenuous exercise
Yes, regular exercise may help you sleep better but it’d be better if you stuck to exercising in the morning or afternoon rather than doing it closer to your bedtime. Vigorous exercise closer to your bedtime will raise your body temperature and heart rate and will thus potentially reduce the amount of sleep you’re going to get.
3) Shuffle up your hobbies
Relaxing by doing the ‘Netflix and chill’ as you put on a show before sleeping may sound nice and warm but in reality, it’s not. Try avoiding that within an hour or so of bedtime. The blue light produced by electronic devices can confuse your brain, which links this light to daytime. If your brain thinks it’s time for you to be awake, it won’t tell your body to produce melatonin, a hormone that helps prepare you for sleep.
Using devices to scroll through social media, play games, watch videos, or chat with friends can also keep your brain active when you need it to start calming down.
4) Don’t eat late in the evening
Eating late at night can negatively affect your sleep quality and the natural melatonin release by your body. In fact, the quality of your late night snack also affects the quality of your sleep. It’s wise to be mindful of what you’re eating before bedtime and be aware of what suits your stomach.
5) Don’t drink alcohol
Having a couple of drinks at night can negatively affect your sleep and hormones. Alcohol is known to cause or increase the symptoms of sleep apnea, snoring, and disrupted sleep patterns. It also alters nighttime melatonin production, which plays a key role in your body’s circadian rhythm
Things you can do that may help you sleep better
1) Put on some calming music
2) Make hygiene a ritual
3) Relax your muscles
4) Try journaling to relieve stress
5) Take a relaxing bath or shower
6) Reduce blue light exposure in the evening
7) Increase bright light exposure during the day
8) Try daily nutrition supplements
Osoaa’s Ashwagandha capsules can be extremely helpful for you if you have trouble sleeping. It helps control stress and anxiety by reducing the level of stress hormone. It helps promote sound sleep. It also helps increase calmness, focus, and improves mental well-being. Moreover, it’s a hundred percent herbal, contains no additives and is free of any kind of side effects. It is a powerful standardized extract-based formulation of Ashwagandha Root with 5% Withanolides. Other benefits of Osoaa’s Ashwagandha are that it improves cognitive function, vitality, muscle strength, bone and joint health and is helpful in faster recovery during exercise and physical activity. Try taking one tablet twice a day for 2-3 months for best results or as per your doctor’s instructions.