As we all know fitness and nutrition is key to a healthy body and mind, but sleep often gets neglected.

After a long day at work or school we’re tired, and often or not it’s not the falling asleep that brings us trouble, but the staying asleep that can be the tricky part. We bolt awake in the middle of the night, up several times in the night for a wee after getting our 3 litres in. We toss, we turn, we wake up tired and start the cycle over again. 

Sleep experts tells us that there are lots of things we need to do to condition our minds, bodies, and energy to truly rest, uninterrupted, and it really begins before bedtime. Some pointers may seem insignificant, but they make a major difference. 

Here are three tops tips to rest easy at night…

Avoid caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol
Caffeine and nicotine act as a stimulant that can keep you awake. While alcohol can help you doze off, it can cause more fragmented sleep throughout the night. Alcohol, when broken down, produces more (light sleep). Brain activity during this stage closely resembles brain activity when awake.”

If you can’t sleep, stop trying
There will be nights where you just can’t sleep. Sometimes it takes time to teach our bodies to fall asleep, and lying there staring at the clock is just going to make you more anxious and frustrated. It’s best to get out of bed if you can’t sleep and go into another room and do a quiet and restful activity like reading a book, practising some bedtime yoga etc. until you feel sleepy enough to head back to bed.

Turn off tech and keep it out of the bedroom
Not only does technology expose us to blue light, it can be emotionally and mentally stimulating, making it more difficult for us to shut down our minds and settle into sleep. When you are exposed to bright lights before going to bed, the sleep switch in your brain turns off. So while you may fall asleep fine to the TV or after surfing your phone, your brain still thinks it’s awake, not allowing you to achieve restorative sleep, and promoting more restless sleep.