TOP SLEEP TIPS
Having a good nights sleep can make the world of difference. Here are Dr Balinda Batten's recommnedations for getting an improved, restful sleep.
- Going to bed and getting up at roughly the same time, all the time, will programme your body to sleep better.
- Your bedroom should be kept for rest and sleep and it should be neither too hot, nor too cold; and as quiet and dark as possible.
- Make sure your bed is comfortable.
- Regular, moderate exercise such as swimming or walking can help relieve the day’s stresses and strains. But not too close to bedtime or it may keep you awake!
- Cut down on tea or coffee – especially in the evening. They interfere with falling asleep and prevent deep sleep. Have a hot milky drink or herbal tea instead.
- Avoid heavy meals or alcohol, before bedtime. Alcohol may help you fall asleep initially, but will interrupt your sleep later on in the night.
- Don’t smoke. Smokers take longer to fall asleep, wake more often and often experience more sleep disruption.
- Try to relax before going to bed for example with music, a warm bath or gentle exercise; and avoid stressful situations or conversations just before bed time.
- Deal with worries or a heavy workload by making lists of things to be tackled the next day. Keep a notepad by your bed.
- If you can’t sleep, don’t lie there worrying about it. Get up and do something you find relaxing until you feel sleepy again – then go back to bed.
EXTRA HELP – talk to your GP or another member of the caring team….
- If you are suffering with stress or physical symptoms eg: pain which might be interfering with sleep.
- If sleep problems become intolerable, sleeping tablets might help short term although these often have side effects and can create more problems in the long term.
- If your sleep is disturbed by caring for someone else, extra help eg: sitting services, or respite care may be available.