Some of the most common complaints family medicine doctors hear are related to their patients' inability to get a good nights' sleep. Since not getting high-quality sleep each night greatly affects your ability to work and function during the day, not sleeping really drags you down and affects your mental and physical performance abilities.
If you struggle to fall asleep more nights than you would like, then try each of these things:
Keep a Regular Wake-Sleep Schedule with No Naps
If you struggle to fall asleep at night but often find yourself napping during the day, then it's important you stop giving in and sleeping during the day. Even a short nap in the afternoon can greatly affect your ability to sleep later that night.
It is ideal for your body to fall asleep and wake up at the same times each day. When you have sleep issues, this is even more important. Simply getting up at the same time each day and going to bed at the same time each night can greatly improve your overall ability to sleep well.
Don't Drink Caffeinated Beverages or Eat Chocolate After Lunch
Though you may be tempted to drink a large glass of soda with dinner or eat a chocolate bar afterward for dessert, the caffeine and sugar will likely keep you awake later when you go to bed. To ensure your sleep issues aren't related to caffeine, don't drink caffeinated beverages or eat chocolate after lunchtime. This is especially important if you go to bed early in the evening.
Keep Your Bedroom Cool and Dark
In order to successfully fall asleep, your bedroom needs to be cool and dark. When your body is transitioning from being awake to asleep it needs to cool down. If the room is too hot, then your body can't fall asleep and you will toss and turn.
Since it's hard for your body to sleep if a room is too light, you should also keep your bedroom very dark. Even a bright nightlight or clock radio is enough to prevent you from falling asleep. If you need a nightlight for safety, then buy one that is motion activated.
Speak to Your Doctor About Your Difficulty Sleeping
If you struggle to get a decent nights' sleep, then speaking to your doctor about it is very important. There are many medical conditions that can affect your ability to sleep at night and your doctor may be able to assist you or refer you to a sleep clinic to determine the root cause of your sleep difficulties.
Reach out to a clinic like Elkview General Hospital to learn more.