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Monday, 13 March 2017

Not sleeping properly? It could be your sleep hygiene

what is sleep hygiene blog post not sleeping properly how to sleep better

If you've never heard of sleep hygiene or "clean sleeping" before, it basically refers to practices that you can do before bed or in the day to result in a better nights sleep. When i first started looking into sleep hygiene, i thought it was going to be a huge fad that only belonged to the pages of magazines that wouldn't translate into my life, but i was wrong. Sleep hygiene actually makes a lot of sense and isn't difficult to put into place. This is kind of my guide to sleep hygiene without the unrealistic expectation of asking you to not go on Instagram an hour before going to bed..

ROUTINE: 

I am a huge routine person, if i could do every thing at the same time everyday i probably would and now i think about it i probably do. Waking and going to bed at around about the same time every day is the biggest factor in getting a good nights sleep, we all talk about a body clock but i don't think we actually anticipate how real and important one is. 

The point is your body needs to actually be tired enough to fall asleep at night and have had enough sleep to wake up at a certain time in the morning. You can get back into a routine by bringing the time you get into bed forward by half and hour each night and getting up half an hour earlier each day, its likely you'll struggle to fall asleep in the beginning but after about three days you'll get tired earlier each night. Move the time forward by half an hour for as long as you want, until your body is in a natural routine to fall asleep and wake when you need. 

SLEEPING ENVIRONMENT: 

There's a sort of checklist that goes along with making sure you're in the right environment for good sleep, the obvious being temperature control, comfort and light exposure. But i believe there's another side to sleeping environment and thats to do with association, try to avoid doing anything other than sleeping in your bed. Once you start eating and working from bed you'll start to associate your bed with being awake rather than asleep; better sleep hygiene means creating separation between being awake and being asleep and reserving your bed for sleeping rather than anything else.

EXERCISE:

Exercise is vital to getting a good nights sleep but can also hinder sleep if you don't do it at the correct time; doing exercise too close to bed time will increase heart rate and adrenaline levels and thus make it harder to fall asleep in the short term. Good sleep hygiene involves exercise during the day at a time that suits you, without being too close to when you actually want to go to bed. 

STIMULANTS:

Everyone knows you shouldn't down a cup of coffee and then jump straight into bed expecting to fall asleep, but most people believe if you drink alcohol it'll help with putting you to sleep, which is far from the truth. While you might fall asleep quite quickly with alcohol in your system the second half of your sleep will be disrupted while your body starts to process the alcohol. So while it's obvious you should stay away from caffeine and foods high in sugar before bedtime, if you're really struggling with sleep particularly waking and not being able to get back to sleep, consider cutting down on the alcohol.

PUT YOUR PHONE AWAY:

The last thing to consider is where you place your clock while you're sleeping, which for many goes hand in hand with where you place your phone. If you have your clock within your eye line when you're in bed you're more likely to watch the time tick away and it'll be awful for your sleep. It's the same feeling of trying to calculate exactly how much sleep you're going to get, which means you spend more time panicking that time is running out and not actually getting any sleep. What also ties in here is what you do when you wake up in the middle of the night, the worst possible thing to do is pick up your phone or look at the time. If you pick up your phone your light exposure changes and your brain becomes active, similarly if you begin to look at the clock you start to think about sleeping  which all results in not sleeping.

Is your sleep hygiene in check? - Maria x

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31 comments

  1. Amazing post! Although my sleeping pattern is pretty good there are always those day's when I just can't fall asleep or wake up completely tired. Definitely going to have things you mentioned in mind on those kind of days. xo

    Antonia || Sweet Passions

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    1. Thank you, hopefully they're helpful! x

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  2. I like the idea of keeping your sleeping space and awake space separate. Although, I have a terrible habit of slumping on my bed after gym/work!

    Neelam | www.neelamjayna.co.uk xx

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    1. Its definitely important, but at least you're using it to relax rather than working or something like that! x

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  3. Definitely a great idea to have proper sleeping habits, as it connects directly to overall health. I've never had good sleep hygiene, to be honest lol. I'm also a night owl so that makes things harder. I find myself most productive at night and really drained during the day.

    Ashlynn, The Crimson Cardigan

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    1. Definitely, everything is dependant on your sleep! I'm the complete opposite, I'm useless to anyone past like 8 pm ahaha x

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  4. These tips are super helpful! If I wake up in the night I try my hardest not to check my phone, but due to early starts at work, I sometimes have to :/ if I have a day off then I definitely won't check it

    Isobel X

    www.fashionistachic14.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. It definitely does make a difference, think of it like not waking your brain up in the middle of the night hahah x

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  5. I have never thought about keeping your bedtime place separate from your awake space! My husband and I tend to eat and watch TV in our bed all the time and we really should stop doing it! I think it will be hard to break him of the habit... Which might make it difficult for me to break too but it is worth the shot! Thanks for the lovely tips♥

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    1. Yeah i think it has become very common recently to do a lot from bed and i can see why! But its definitely better to make it a completely separate space, that way i enjoy my bed even more when i get into it! hahah x

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  6. Loved this, definitely going to take some tips from this post! 💜

    www.sjbeauty.co.uk

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    1. aw great! Hopefully they're helpful for you! x

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  7. Great post - I normally find that when I can't sleep, it's because I'm thinking too much and stressing over things.

    http://ohduckydarling.com

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    1. Thank you! Yeah thats often the case, i find reading helps to shut my mind off a bit haha x

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  8. This was an excellent read! I've considered a lot of this before but never really taken any action aside from making sure to put my phone down a good hour or at least half hour before bed. I typically like to diffuse lavender essential oil, have calm jazz playing, and read before bed. Sometimes I'll even take a bath before bed to calm my body or I'll do some light yoga and deep breathing. But all of this is so vital because sleep is so important. Thanks for sharing!!

    Stephanie // SheSawStyle.com

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    1. I love to have a bath before bed its one of the best things to help me sleep, as well as lavender scented things, thank you for reading! x

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  9. This is such a wonderful post! I sleep terribly, I wake maybe two or three times a night. I'll definitely try these tips and who knows I might be able to get some sleep! Thank you for sharing Maria, hugs, Rosie x

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  10. My sleeping pattern is awful! I really need to get into a good routine with it, so this post is really helpful, thank you!xx

    Hannah | luxuryblush♡

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    1. aw thats great to hear, i hope you can get back into a good routine soon! x

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  11. Very helpful post. Would try getting into a good routine.

    Love,
    http://lasbenditas.com/

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    1. Thank you for reading! It's definitely worth it, sleep is essential to so many parts of life! x

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  12. Really important pointers, good health relies on good sleep. I try my best but I have a Fibromyalgia so I get a lot of disturbed sleep, or hardly an, or too much. At times like that, it's real difficult. You're so right about regularity/cycles! Fab post x

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    1. Thank you so much for reading! Aw that must be so difficult, hopefully regular cycles help to at least get you slightly more sleep! x

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  13. I just thought about hygine sleeping, and right now I want to put my phone away before bed time hihi. Thank you for the tips anyway.

    www.extraodiary.com

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    1. aw thats a good thing! thank you for reading! x

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  14. I always struggle to fall asleep so this post was super helpful! Also adore your writing style! X

    Kiera | beautydeprived.blogspot.com

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    1. aw thats such a lovely compliment thank you! Glad it's helpful x

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  15. These are perfect tips! I know I sometimes struggle with getting a good nights sleep, so I defiantly be putting these to good use!

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    1. aw great, i hope they work well for you! x

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  16. I love this! I have had problem with sleeping for few months now. I always count how many hours of sleep I am gonna get. When I wake up during the night, checking a time on my phone is so automatic thing. I think I am gonna put my phone away from my bed and see if that helps. Also it will kick me out of the bed in the morning rather then hit the snooze :D

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