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Three Ways to Train Your Brain for Better Sleep

1. Wake Up Regularly

Melatonin is a hormone released by the body to regulate the time when you get sleepy and when you wake up. At night, the level of melatonin rises, which means it's time for bed. Light can stop the production of melatonin, so the levels of melatonin naturally fall as daylight approaches.

Clinical psychologist and sleep expert Michael Grandner pointed out that in order to secrete melatonin properly, you have to work and rest regularly. If your bedtime and wake-up time are different every day or vary over the weekend, your body won't be able to predict your sleeping habits and won't know how to respond.

Therefore, it's important to wake up at a set time every day, even on weekends, holidays, or even if you didn't sleep well the night before.

2. Don't stay in bed

Don’t stay awake in bed. It's a golden rule of sleep medicine based on decades of data. In fact, the rule even works better than prescription drugs in sleep clinic. "The best sleeping advice is to get up when you wake up, don't lie in bed awake." says Grandner.

 “At night, if you're in bed for 20 or 30 minutes and you're not asleep,you should get up and adjust yourself. Maybe it only takes five minutes for you to feel sleepy, maybe an hour, but don’t lie awake in bed during that time.”

Why is this rule so important? Because lying awake in bed creates an association in the brain that can lead to chronic insomnia, Grandner explained. As a result, the bed is no longer a comfortable place to sleep, but a place where you toss and turn restlessly and wake up exhausted.

Building a positive connection between bed and sleep can also help you fall asleep,Grandner added. He said: "Let's say you need to go to bed earlier. The bed will help you calm down and let you fall asleep quickly .”

3. Change your attitude about sleep

“Many people view sleep as the final thing they have to do in a jam-packed day. In order to finish housework, schoolwork, office work, or the latest binge-worthy television series, people delay the time for bed. This thinking method needs to be changed.“ Grander says.

He advised, "Don't think of sleep time as the rest of your day, but as the preparation for a productive day tomorrow. It may sound like a small shift in thinking, but it's very important.”

Most adults need more than 8 hours of sleep according to the US Centers of Disease Control and Prevention. So if a person needs to get up at 7 am every day, he had better fall asleep at 11 pm.

" When it's bedtime, whether you have finished the work or not , you have to stop it and get ready to go to bed," said Grandner, “The problem is that we don't want to stop,which will damage our sleep quality and make the next day more stressful.”

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