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A guide to good sleep hygiene

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When talking about sleep hygiene, it is first important to establish exactly what it is. Many people across the United Kingdom believe this is simply getting an early night but as our latest feature will show you, there is far more to establishing great sleep hygiene in your life.

Sleep hygiene is actually a range of different practices and disciplines which help your body to get the rest it needs, so you can feel as refreshed and replenished the next day whether this be for school, work or play. Finding the right balance between not enough and too much sleep is also of paramount importance.

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As Michael Thorpy, MD of The National Sleep Foundation says, “The most important sleep hygiene measure is to maintain a regular wake and sleep pattern seven days a week. It is also important to spend an appropriate amount of time in bed, not too little, or too excessive.”

“This may vary by individual; for example, if someone has a problem with daytime sleepiness, they should spend a minimum of eight hours in bed, if they have difficulty sleeping at night, they should limit themselves to 7 hours in bed in order to keep the sleep pattern consolidated.”

So, how can one ensure that they are adhering to these principles and maintaining their sleep hygiene? This may well be easier said than done for many, but the team here at Haus of Hyde have put together some fantastic tips which could well improve your sleeping patterns for good.

Avoid Napping

We all like a nice afternoon nap every now and again but this could well be the reason you are struggling to get to sleep at night. As Dr. Thorpy suggests above, it is all about getting a solid pattern so your body clock is set and your brain gets used to a good cycle of sleep.

If you find yourself getting fatigued during the day, try eating something healthy or doing some exercise to invigorate yourself rather than opting for a siesta.

No TV In Bed

This is something that has grown in popularity since the advent of On Demand television services such as 4OD or Netflix but really should be avoided. It is all too easy to drag your laptop into the bedroom and put on another Game of Thrones to get you to sleep, but your body will quite simply not get the same quality of sleep that it would if you switched off the lights and had a proper rest.

Similarly, many doctors maintain that you should avoid all screens for at least a few hours before bed, this includes your smartphones and tablets. We all lead busy lives and our devices have become essential to that but by putting these away a good few hours before bed time you can improve your standards of sleep hygiene dramatically.

Cut Down On Stimulants

Again, if you live a busy work and social life then there is a strong chance that you consume significant amounts of caffeine, energy drinks, nicotine or alcohol. Some of you may even be partial to all of these substances as you look to make the most out of each day.

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Unfortunately, all of these can disrupt your sleep, in particular alcohol. You may think that you sleep well after a few pints of beer or a glass of wine but this is only true of the initial few hours. Once your body starts to metabolise the alcohol, your quality of sleep will deteriorate rapidly meaning you will most likely feel incredibly tired the next day.

Try to cut down on any of these stimulants. if not all of them, close to bed time in order to promote your quality of sleep hygiene.

Prepare Your Bedroom

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work out that your bedroom is an incredibly important part of your sleep hygiene regime, so a few extra steps to ensure it is the perfect environment for your slumber will definitely not go amiss.

Your bedroom should first and foremost be cool, between 15 and 20 degrees Celsius to be exact. Tossing and turning in a hot room, particularly in the summer, will do nothing for your sleep hygiene plan so ensuring the temperature is optimum is vital.

In addition to temperature, one should also look to ensure you can completely black your room out when needed. You can purchase curtains which do just that and be sure to block any other areas where light may be able to seep in, such as the bottom of doors.

Improve the temperature, light and of course noise levels of your bedroom and you will find you will sleep far more deeply and feel so much better for this the next day.

Sleepy Diet

If for any reason, you are still struggling to improve your sleep hygiene levels after following these tips, there are actually foods which can help to promote a better quality of sleep.

Cherries contain melatonin, which helps to regulate your body’s internal clock. So, you may wish to consider a handful of these an hour or so before you plan to go to bed.

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Bananas are often recommended for anyone looking for some fast release energy, but they also strangely have some properties which can aid sleep. The mixture of potassium and magnesium can actually relax your muscles and help you to drift off, so just one a few hours before bed could be an excellent plan.

Finally, milk and turkey contain an amino acid called tryptophan which is a precursor to serotonin. Many experts believe that this can aid natural sleep, meaning that the old wives’ tale of a hot cup of milk before bed may have some real merit after all.

There are all sorts of other ways one can improve their sleep hygiene such as a balanced diet and regular exercise but these are our top picks for making sure you are getting the quality and quantity of rest you need.

You may also wish to peruse our eclectic selection of luxury homewares simply perfect for making your bedroom the perfect location for a deep and fulfilling sleep. From premium quality linens to classic soft furnishings, our selection is getting better all the time so be sure to take a good look!

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