We get asked TONS of questions about how to improve sleep. We thought we'd post a few here and maybe they'll answer some of yours.
What does 'sleep hygiene' mean?
Sleep hygiene is what you do to ensure quality, restful sleep. From sleeping in a clean bed with fresh linen to removing any digital devices from your bedroom and setting a reasonable bedtime, sleep hygiene is an important consideration in looking after your sleep needs.
Do older people need more sleep, or less?
The older an adult gets, the more sleep they will need. It depends on you, your lifestyle, your general health and your activity levels but generally speaking, as we get older, we start to experience difficulty falling and staying asleep.
Should we sleep in a warm environment or a cool one?
Obviously comfort is the most important criteria. You don't want to feel too hot or too cold but when it comes to falling asleep, cooler is more advantageous. Our body's core temperature decreases when we sleep so if you're too warm as you're trying to drift off, you may find you need to kick part of the covers off to help your body cool down. Give it a try.
In winter, if you need an electric blanket to warm the bed before you get in, make sure you turn it off before you climb in. Do not leave it on while you sleep! In summer, set your air conditioner to go off at a certain time or to come on at a certain time if your bedroom is hotter in the morning. You can also set it to 'auto' so it maintains a stable temperature for the time it's on.
How much sleep do I need?
That depends again on your lifestyle, health and activity levels but also your age, your job and even the season! Aim for 7 to 8 hours per night if you're an adult but teenagers need a bit more, around 9 hours per night.
Is a bedtime routine really necessary?
No one wants to be told what time to go to bed! But the truth is it's healthier for you if you aim to go to bed at a similar time every night. The odd late night won't cause too much of a disruption but if six out of seven nights a week stick to the same routine, you'll be doing your body a favour.
Should I wake up at the same time every morning?
That's actually a good idea. Setting your alarm and getting up around the same time each day helps you body settle into a pattern. After a while, you'll notice you don't even need the alarm.
Is it better to sleep in darkness?
Yes and the darker the better. The absence of light signals the brain to release melatonin, the sleep hormone. Close your blinds or curtains and if you must have any devices in your room, cover any standby lights and put your phone down upside down on your dressing table or bedside table.
Which is more important: sleep, diet or exercise?
All three! They are equally important and let's throw in another: drink plenty of water throughout the day.
If you have questions about sleep, drop us a line and we may just have the answers for you. In the meantime, cruise around our sleep tips blog and check out our 100% natural sleep essential oils, made right here in Australia.