7 expert tips for better sleep to help you get eight hours every night

-Oct 20, Jenny Paul , Living -

Good lifestyle habits can help reduce the reasons for a bad night’s sleep and help you wake up feeling really rested.

Worrying about how much and how well we have slept is something being discussed in workplaces and homes across the world and James Wilson, Sleep expert and presenter of the UK’s Channel 4’s The Secret of Sleep, says for many of us sleep seems a mystery.

“There is so much conflicting advice and lack of clarity on how to sleep well. Often people compare their sleep against an unrealistic expectation which increases anxiety around their sleep and leads them to worry more and sleep worse. I encourage people to understand what their sleep need is, in terms of quality and quantity, who they are as sleepers – larks, owls or typical – and what changes they need to make to their mindset, behaviours and sleep environment.”

1. Have a cool bedroom at night

Dropping off to sleep is in part a physical event which has some precursors. James Wilson says: “To induce sleep we need to have a drop in heart rate – be relaxed – and a drop in core temperature – be cool – so we need to consider if what we do before bed and what we sleep on and under helps this process. Too many people try and actively force sleep, when what we need to do to sleep better is create the right conditions for sleep to come to us.” 

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2. Use ear plugs and blackout blinds

Dr Emer MacSweeney, Consultant Neuroradiologist, Re:Cognition Health advises: “A dark, quiet room is optimal for helping to avoid instances of waking throughout the night. Ear plugs and black out blinds may be a useful investment if you’re disrupted by noise or light. Being too hot or cold can be detrimental to sleep quality and increase wakefulness. Around 20°C is thought to be the optimum sleep temperature.

3. Write your way to better sleep

Ailsa Frank,  Hypnotherapist and author of ‘Cut the Crap and Feel Amazing’ says: “Write down any worries you may have or any tasks that need to be done tomorrow. This will free your mind from the clutter in your head, and will help you to be more prepared for bedtime and the morning.”

4. Switch off electrical devices to really switch off and sleep

Neil Shah, from The Stress Management Society says: “Laptops, televisions, phones – all electronic devices and gadgets in the bedroom interfere with your body’s natural electrical flow even when they are switched off, so banish as many of them as possible.”

5. Use smart nutrients for a great night’s sleep

Mihaela Berciu owner of Mindfulness Hub says “Choose foods that contain amino acids, vitamin B6, magnesium to facilitate the increase of melatonin produced by the body. These include oily fish, rice, hummus, miso soup, cheese and diary and almonds.”  

6. Don’t worry if you wake up in the night

Mary Nash, Health Coach says “If you wake up in the night due to factors such as night sweats or needing a pee and you get frustrated or annoyed by the interruption, find a mantra that you can repeat to yourself to reduce your irritation.  Something like ‘it’s okay to wake up because I will be able to go back to sleep soon once I’ve cooled down/peed’.  Repeating this during the day, evening, and if you wake up can stop your mind going into frustrated overdrive which of course keeps you awake.”

7. Use supplements that have been clinically tested with proven results for sleep

A recent survey showed that, of those surveyed, 93% of people wake up at some point in the night. Almost nine out of ten (87%) people reported disturbed sleep (waking up a lot) at least once a week with almost a quarter (23%) saying their sleep is disturbed every night. After a 12-week, independent clinical trial for Lumity’s Morning and Night Supplements, 92% of participants noticed a significant shift in the condition of skin, hair and nails. 84% reported that they had fewer instances of waking throughout the night, more energy, with increased immunity and improved emotional balance also scoring highly amongst the findings.

If you enjoyed this, why not take a look at why inflammation could be keeping you awake at night. And here’s the ultimate anti-inflammatory food pyramid so you sleep better, deeper and more peacefully at night.

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