As we slip into our beauty sleep every night, we go through two phases – rapid eye movement (REM) sleep and non-REM sleep. These are said to alternate every 60 to 90 minutes and include our dreams and nightmare cycles, too. While dreams are a reflection of pleasant and productive thoughts, nightmares occur due to a stressful day, negative emotions, and a disturbed thought process.
A soothing atmosphere, a proper schedule, and other such measures will go a long way in helping you sleep better every time you hit the pillow. Take these simple steps to improve the duration and quality of sleep.1 2
6 Ways To Sleep Better Every Night
1. Follow A Consistent Schedule
You need to have a consistent
2. Setup A Comfortable Room
The first thing you need to do is make sure that the environment you sleep in is comfortable and soothing. Dim lights, soothing music, and comfortable temperature will relax your mind and ensure you focus only on sleeping and relaxation. You will get better dreams, too. Avoid stressful, hectic activities before going to bed.
3. Avoid Stimulants In The Night
Avoid taking stimulants like alcohol, nicotine, caffeine, and others that might be counter productive to a good night’s sleep. While taking these may interrupt your REM state and keep you from going into deeper stages of sleep, once you stop taking them, you will experience deeper REM sleep, which might result in nightmares at times. Caffeine can stimulate energy and make it difficult for you to fall asleep and hence affect your REM cycle.5
4. Take Measures To Avoid Restless Sleep
Get your share of undisturbed sleep every night. You need to arrange your schedule to avoid waking in the night unless it is essential, like attending to a baby. All other wake-up factors like phones, loud music, bright lights, and noises should not be allowed to interrupt your sleep schedule. Night waking can interrupt your REM cycle and make you lose out on good dreams.6
5. Sleep More
It helps to add an extra hour of sleep whenever you can. Because REM cycles occur every 60 to 90 minutes, tossing in an extra 60 to 90 minutes of sleep can ensure that you get another REM sleep cycle. Go to bed an hour earlier or sleep an hour longer if you can. This could make your sleep more restorative and beneficial.7
6. Catch Up On Lost Sleep
If you haven’t had your share of sleep, it is perfectly fine to indulge in a short nap during the day. If your nap lasts 60 or 90 mins, you might even execute a cycle of REM sleep during that short nap. Such naps are an excellent way to catch up on lost sleep and help you relax better. This will put you back on a proper sleeping track and help you enjoy the benefits of REM sleep.8
Make sure you snuggle in your bed, listening to soothing music with your favorite book and a peaceful mind to get your REM sleep. Enjoy your share of beautiful dreams!
|↑1||Hodges-Crowder, Jennifer F. Evaluation of a sleep hygiene program to improve inmate sleep quality. Louisiana Tech University, 2007.|
|↑2||ONONOGBU, SANDRA. “Association between Intensity of Information and Communication Technology usage and Quality of Sleep Among School-aged children.” (2011).|
|↑3, ↑4, ↑6||J.Cotter, Ten Steps to Better Sleep (and Tips for Insomnia): A Concise Guide, BookBaby, 2013.|
|↑5||Brickman Jim, Soothe: How to find calm amid everyday chaos, Rodale, 2015.|
|↑7||Brickman Jim, Soothe: How to find
|↑8||Moorcroft. H. William, Understanding Sleep and Dreaming, Springer Science & Business Media, 2013.|