Five tips to improve your sleep

Studies show 1 in 3 adults sleep less than 7 hours per night and are sleep-deprived. Quality sleep is essential for optimal wellbeing. Here’s 5 tips to improve your sleep.

  1. Reduce your exposure to blue-light at least one to two hours before bedtime. Night-time light exposure, such as that from your phone, impacts your circadian rhythm and can trick your brain into thinking it’s still day-time, reducing hormones like melatonin which help you relax and achieve deep sleep.
  2. Avoid stimulants such as caffeinated drinks late in the day. Caffeine stimulates your nervous system and can stay in your blood for up to 6-8 hours, so consuming just before bedtime may interfere with relaxation. Switch to decaf or try herbal teas.
  3. Try to wake and sleep at consistent times, even on weekends. Irregular sleep patterns can alter your circadian rhythm and levels of melatonin which signal your brain to sleep.
  4. Exercise regularly. Keeping active during the day is one of the best ways to manage better sleep and has been shown to reduce symptoms of insomnia. However, be careful to not exercise too late in the day; the stimulatory effect of exercise can increase alertness and hormones like adrenaline for some people
  5. Wind down. After a busy day it may take some time to get into ‘sleep-mode’, so get into the habit of establishing a ‘buffer-zone’ by finding a relaxing activity such as reading which will calm your mind and prepare your body for sleep.

Sources: sleephealthfoundation.org.au; healthdirect.gov.au; sleepforhealth.net.au