You’ve had a long day and you’re wiped out. After work, the kids, and dinner, it’s finally time to head to bed and get some shut eye. But why, now that it’s time to cash in on your exhaustion, can you not sleep? After struggling to fall asleep, or tossing and turning all night, we end up getting only a portion of the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep. And so begins a vicious cycle of running on a low sleep deficit. Try these tips and tricks to help yourself fall asleep–and stay asleep.
Distract Your Mind
Close your eyes and visualize your childhood home, finding every single detail that you can remember. Walk through the hallways, and in and out of all the rooms. See the pictures hanging on the walls, the trinkets you kept around your room, and the exact pattern of your comforter.
The next thing you know you will be waking up refreshed to the sound of your alarm clock. When you distract your mind with specific details it helps your brain to focus on details that won’t keep you up at night, like the stressful things that happened at work today, or all the errands you have to run tomorrow.
Ban Electronics from the Bedroom
Light plays a very forceful role in our sleeping patterns every night. The hormone melatonin is produced by our bodies to facilitate sleepiness. Melatonin is introduced into our bloodstream when there is very little light in our environments.
Both natural, and artificial sources of light halt the production of melatonin and can potentially keep us awake. Smartphones, tablets, and other bright electronic devices can interrupt our body’s natural attempt at drifting to sleep. It also means that those last minute stressful emails or texts won’t disrupt you.
Use Breathing Exercises
Breathing is a powerful way to help you fall asleep quickly. Try the 4-7-8 technique, developed by a Harvard trained health doctor. Lightly touch the tissue behind your top front teeth with your touch and use the following breathing pattern:
Breath in through your nose for 4 seconds. Hold your breath for 7 seconds. Blow air out through your mouth for 8 seconds making a ‘whoosh’ sounds. Repeat three more times. This technique delivers more oxygen to the nervous system than normal breathing, which helps your body to de-stress. Counting will also help distract your mind.
Try these techniques and have a good night’s rest. See you in the morning! Neighbors Emergency Center supports your start to a healthier lifestyle. Visit our new Tyler location at 2222 E. Southeast Loop 323, Tyler TX 75701. With a 24 Hour Emergency Rooms throughout the Houston metro area, we can treat you quickly and effectively so you can get back to doing what you love.