10 Tips for Getting a Good Night’s Sleep

Fed up with feeling tired all the time because you just can't get enough quality sleep? Here are a few things to try.


Fed up with feeling tired all the time because you just can't get enough quality sleep? Here are a few things to try.

Whether your Christmas was full of late-night parties or extra shifts at work, the festive season can often affect our sleeping habits. We all know how rough not getting enough sleep can make you feel. In fact, a lack of quality sleep can seriously affect your physical and mental health, from increasing your risk of heart disease and lowering your immune system to making you short-tempered and depressed. As getting a good night’s sleep on a regular basis is essential for your wellbeing, here are some tips to help you drift off and get the quality rest your mind and body need.

How to sleep well

  1. Make it dark – the internal process that regulates our natural sleep/wake cycle associates darkness with tiredness and light with wakefulness. When it’s dark, your body releases a chemical called melatonin, which makes you tired. Exposure to too much light may mean you don’t release enough. Reducing the amount of light you’re exposed to in the hours before bedtime and having a nice, dark place to get some shut eye is important. Black out blinds or curtains are a wise investment.
  2. Stay cool – while it’s nice to feel cosy when you get into bed, having your room too warm can make sleeping more difficult. Equally, too low a temperature could make it harder to drop off. A cool bedroom, preferably with a window left slightly open for a bit of fresh air (if practical) is best – as a guide, The Sleep Council recommend a temperature of around 16°-18°C
  3. Keep it quiet – being disturbed by noise will reduce the quality of your rest and mess up your sleep patterns. If you can, make your bedroom as soundproof as possible. Also, make sure you tell people not to disturb you during this time, especially if you’re working nights and sleeping during the day. Good earplugs are great for light sleepers or anyone with noisy neighbours.
  4. Ditch the electronics – the blue light emitted by electronic devices like TVs, mobile phones, laptops and tablets can mess with your body clock. By depressing melatonin production, this kind of light increases alertness rather than inducing the natural sleepy feeling at bedtime. So, try and switch off the electronics and hour or two before bed.
  5. Wind down properly – your mind and body need to prepare for sleep properly. Doing things like having a bath, making yourself a warm milky drink, reading a book or other relaxing activities are very important in a good night time routine. If you have trouble getting your mind to switch off before bed, try mediation, listening to gentle music or maybe a sleep hypnosis track.
  6. Get enough exercise – being active during the day helps your body use up energy and reduces stress. However, it’s best to do the bulk of your exercising earlier in the day rather than in the hours before bed as the stimulant effects can last for hours.
  7. Sort your bed out – a good mattress, a comfortable pillow and the right weight of duvet can all make a big difference to sleep quality. Making sure you regularly launder your sheets and bedding will also help reduce any allergies that could be interfering with your rest.
  8. Embrace routine – Stick to a regular routine to get yourself into a good sleep pattern. If you work shifts, that can be easier said than done but creating a regular sleep schedule will go a long way in helping improve the quality of the rest you get. While we’re all different, most people need between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night.
  9. Skip the stimulants – if you drink tea, coffee, alcohol or caffeinated energy drinks, don’t do it before bed! Have a mid-afternoon cut-off point for drinks that contain stimulants or switch to decaf.
  10. Be protective – ever met someone brags about being able to function on 4 hours of sleep a night? If that genuinely works for them, fine, but don’t be apologetic about wanting to get your full quota. It’s not a competition, it’s a vital element of daily life that can have a huge impact on your health and happiness. So, guard it fiercely!

Sleep safely with care at home

Of course, if you’re worried about night time because you have extra care needs, it can be hard to relax and rest properly. Overnight care could be the answer. At Bluebird Care Bromley, our waking or sleeping night care service gives you and your family peace of mind that there’s always someone there to help when you need it. Whether you need support to take medication, take trips to the bathroom or any other overnight care, our trained Care Assistants will be on hand.

To find out more about night care, or any of our other home care services, get in touch with our team. We’re always happy to chat and will make sure you get the bespoke care you need to live safely in the comfort of home.