When we’re children and older adults, it’s easier to have a stable sleep routine. However, the years in between can become a little chaotic.
As a teen, you have many extracurricular activities on top of school work and an emerging social life. When we get into college, the party scene and late classes create an irregular sleep schedule. Then, once we settle down as young adults, we’re blessed with little bundles of joy, who like to wake us up at all hours of the night.
Regardless of where you are in life, it’s vital to get quality sleep to stay mentally and physically healthy. We’re going to go over some ways to refine your sleeping habits during these hectic years.
Invest in a Quality Mattress
During the crazy times of our lives, we don’t always have a lot of extra money, but you should spend what you have on a top-class mattress. As a young and active person right now, you’re probably not thinking about aches and pains in the future.
However, “80 percent of adults will deal with lower back pain at some point in their lives,” states the experts at https://thesleepdoctor.com/2020/07/31/best-firm-mattress/. To reduce your risk, sleep on a quality mattress every night. Choose the correct firmness and style that suits you perfectly.
Have a Consistent Schedule
Trying your best to go to bed and waking up at the same time every day will create a more stable sleeping routine. People have an internal clock called a circadian rhythm, which helped our ancestors know when to sleep and when to get up to work before alarm clocks.
Having a consistent sleep schedule will regulate your system to ensure better quality sleep. After a week or two, you won’t need a loud beep to wake you up anymore. Your body will naturally feel tired and wake up at the correct times.
Despite wanting to stay up dancing all night and sleeping late on the weekend, you’ll feel groggy on Monday. It disturbs your rhythm, so it’s better to try to get to bed at the same time on Saturday nights too.
Limit Screen Time at Night
Many of us enjoy watching a program or scrolling on our phones before bed. However, this can mess up your circadian rhythm as well. This internal clock works with the sunlight.
Your body reduces the sleep hormone melatonin in the morning to get you ready to work during the day. Once the sun goes down, it signals your brain to start producing melatonin to prepare you for a night’s rest.
Bright screens trick your brain into thinking it’s still day time, so your body doesn’t produce the sleep hormone. This creates feelings of restlessness and difficulty falling asleep. Instead, try to turn off all devices 2 hours before your scheduled bedtime, and read a book or meditate.
Have a Nighttime Routine
When you have a night routine that you follow, it will trigger your brain to start producing melatonin and aids with the regulation of your system.
Your routine should be activities that promote relaxation. You can take a warm shower, wash your face, drink non-caffeinated tea, listen to soothing music, and prepare for the next morning. Whatever works for you is perfect, but make sure it’s a similar routine each night.
Limit Alcohol Consumption
Many people think that having a glass of wine or a beer before bed will help them get better quality sleep, but the opposite is true. Although alcohol does relax the body, it makes getting into REM sleep harder.
Rapid eye movement, or REM, is the deepest rest, and that’s where a lot of healing takes place. Consistently drinking alcohol every day will affect the quality of sleep you’re getting, which can cause premature aging and other adverse medical conditions.
Save having a drink for the weekends, and try to cut yourself off a few hours before heading to bed. Drink some water to fuel your body for healing during the night.
As young adults, we still have a lot of energy that needs to be released. Try to exercise for at least an hour daily. It can be walking around campus or with your baby stroller and the dog. You can get together with a group of friends for a game of basketball or soccer. It doesn’t have to be anything extreme.
However, if you prefer hitting the gym, doing a HIIT class or lifting weights is beneficial too. At night, you’ll naturally feel tired. This will help to ensure you’re going to bed at the correct time and falling asleep quickly.
The Bottom Line
Getting proper sleep is just as essential for overall health as eating nutrient-rich foods. Without rest, your body can’t heal, you’ll feel groggy, and you won’t be able to perform at your best.
During the hectic years of our lives, it’s critical to take care of ourselves with sleep. You should invest in a quality mattress, stick with a schedule, limit screen time, have a routine, drink less alcohol, and exercise. When you get adequate rest, you’ll be happier and healthier.