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7 Natural Remedies for Better Sleep

Fight your sleeplessness with these natural approaches

If you’re having difficulty falling asleep, you’re not alone. The National Sleep Foundation recommends getting between seven and nine hours of sleep each night, but most of us get much less due to hectic schedules, mounting stress, and other sleeping woes. Before trying over-the-counter medication, try these seven natural remedies for better sleep.

Help yourself to sleep naturally
A good sleep is essential part of our good health. Use natural approaches to help you fight
sleeplessness and have a more restful sleep at night. (Photo: Vladislav Muslakov, Unsplash)

1. Set a consistent sleep-wake schedule

Stick to a consistent schedule of the same bedtime and wake-up time, even on the weekends. This routine will help you fall asleep and stay asleep throughout the night. Listen to your body when creating a sleep schedule (some people can stay up longer while others prefer to go to bed earlier and wake up earlier). Regardless of the actual times involved in your schedule, keep it consistent and make sure you get at least seven to nine hours of sleep each night.

2. Fall asleep to essential oils

Aromatherapy is a form of alternative medicine that relies on the powerful sense of smell and essential oils. Essential oils are derived from plants to boost mood, promote relaxation, and improve overall health. Choosing scents that promote relaxation can help get our bodies into a restful state of sleep. Essential oils like lavender, bergamot, and valerian are most effective in helping people fall asleep.

Use aromatherapy to help your sleep better
Aromatherapy has many positive effects on our mood and health.
If you have difficulty falling asleep, try using essential oils to help you get sleep.

3. Exercise

When your brain is affected by stress, the whole body is impacted. Working out helps the body produces endorphins, which act as natural painkillers and improve the ability to sleep at night. Go for an evening walk after work or schedule a cycling class in the morning. If you need external stimuli to help motivate you to work out, have a friend be your workout buddy and hold you accountable to exercising.

4. Eat a balanced diet

For your best night’s sleep, try to eat a balanced diet of fresh fruit, whole grains, and low-fat proteins. Limit your intake of caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine, especially after certain times in the afternoon. You may also want to avoid sugar as it causes uneven blood sugar levels and results in restless sleep.

Combine diet and exercise for better sleep
A well-balanced nutrition, in combination with regular exercise, can help remedy many
health problems, including helping you deal with sleeping disorders. (Image: Pixabay)

5. Create a restful sleep environment

Having a sleep environment full of distractions can ultimately affect your sleep schedule and lead to poor sleep hygiene. Regarding noise, soundproof your room with a door stopper, invest in a white noise machine, and fix any appliances that are constantly rattling or making noise throughout the night. There’s nothing more annoying than having a washer or dryer rattle while you’re trying to fall asleep. In addition to lowering noise levels in your sleep environment, make sure light levels are low and that there isn’t too much clutter—the physical presence of clutter can cause more stress and anxiety, ultimately affecting your sleep.

6. Practice meditation

Not only can meditation improve your sleep quality, but it can also help reduce blood pressure, decrease anxiety, and lessen pain. By participating in mindfulness meditation — a practice that involves focusing on your breathing and then bringing your mind’s attention to the present—you can break the train of everyday thoughts and evoke a relaxation response. Try meditating for 10 minutes before your bedtime to help you fall asleep.

7. Limit technology use before bed

According to Harvard Medical School, blue light wavelengths produced by electronics can boost attention, improve reaction times, and elevate your mood. While this is great for the daytime, it can be an issue at night when you’re trying to fall asleep. Stop using your phone or looking at screens at least an hour before bedtime.

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