- It’s a big day for the world’s problem sleepers…
- Are you making this mistake before bedtime?
- Why you should put a drop of this under your pillow
Do you know what day it is today?
Yes, it’s Friday, obviously. (Hooray!)
But it’s also WORLD SLEEP DAY.
I like to think that in an ideal world, that would mean everybody in the world gets to stay in bed for an extra two hours.
However, no such luck.
This day is more about raising awareness of a serious global health problem.
And I really do mean serious.
You’ll know from my many letters on the subject that I believe sleep problems are at the root of many ongoing health issues – mental and physical.
What’s more, insomnia is on the rise.
Firstly, because of the increasing use of electronics and screens near bedtime, along with all the ambience and noise caused by gadgets, wi-fi and traffic.
Secondly, because of the many anxieties of modern living (99% of human evolution happened when we were hunter gatherers, so our brains aren’t adapted to this sedentary life of work and stress).
Thirdly, the pandemic and its lockdowns, which is creating something known as coronasomnia, meaning that a quarter of British people now have trouble sleeping. (Read my thoughts on that here: Coronasomnia )
The slogan of this year’s World Sleep Day is “Regular Sleep, Healthy Future”. Dr. Lourdes DelRosso, co-chair of the World Sleep Day Committee says:
“Studies have demonstrated that stable bedtimes and rise times are associated with better sleep quality in young, middle-aged adults, and seniors. Regular sleepers have better mood, psychomotor performance, and academic achievement.”
So what do they advise in order to get better sleep?
10 things you need to do before bedtime
On their website, which you can see [here], they have the following ten pointers:
- Fix a bedtime and an awakening time.
- If you are in the habit of taking a nap, do not exceed 45 minutes of daytime sleep.
- Avoid excessive alcohol ingestion 4 hours before bedtime and do not smoke.
- Avoid caffeine 6 hours before bedtime. This includes coffee, tea and many sodas, as well as chocolate.
- Avoid heavy, spicy, or sugary foods 4 hours before bedtime. A light snack before bed is acceptable.
- Exercise regularly, but not right before bed.
- Use comfortable bedding.
- Find a comfortable temperature setting for sleeping and keep the room well ventilated.
- Block out all distracting noise and eliminate as much light as possible.
- Reserve the bed for sleep and sex. Don’t use the bed as an office, workroom or recreation room.
These are all good, in my opinion – certainly you should put these lifestyle measures in place first.
Then I would recommend you look at extra herbal and nutritional measures to get yourself into a sleepy state each night.
For instance, Calmophytum is the top recommended natural sedative at the Good Life Letter – a blend of five herbs to soothe and relax you, giving you a better night’s sleep.
You can order it on a month’s risk-free trial basis from here.
As you can imagine, this product is proving popular during lockdown, so get it while stocks last!
You can also try this…
Why you should put a drop of this under your pillow
Also, consider putting a drop of lavender, camomile or extract of passion flower oil on a tissue under your pillow each night before you go to bed.
Alternatively, you can dab a drop on your temples, wrists or neck.
Lavender in particular is really good because it’s a natural anxiolytic (anxiety reliever) and sedative. It helps quieten down your brain and calm the nervous system – both of which will help with your quality of sleep.
In one small study at Wesleyan University in Connecticut subjects sniffed lavender essential oil one night – and pure water the next.
On the nights when they breathed in the lavender, researchers found that it increased ‘slow-wave sleep’, which is the sleep when your heartbeat slows and your muscles relax.
If you don’t want the oil on your body or under your pillow you can always keep a bowl of dried lavender on your bedside table.
And don’t forget the ‘master mineral’
Finally today, also remember that magnesium is a really helpful mineral for a good night’s sleep, as these people will testify:
- “I am sleeping 6, 7 and sometimes 8 hours per night. That has never been known for me since I was very young.” – Jessie
- “I have been taking this for a week now and have noticed that I feel a lot calmer. I usually wake up feeling a bit anxious for no reason but that hasn’t happened since taking magnesium” – Debbie Dickson
- “It releases me from the agony of cramp & the tossing & turning that robs me of a good night’s sleep.” – Jean Gerrard
For information on magnesium for better sleep, take a look at this: Magnesium the Master Mineral
Anyway, I hope that one of these tips will work for you, because it couldn’t be more important to get regular high-quality sleep.
I emphasis ‘quality’ here. It’s not about how long you are in bed but how deep and restful your sleep is.
Oh, and by the way, if you have your own methods of getting better sleep that I’ve not mentioned in these letters, please do email me with your suggestions!
I’d love to hear what works for you!