Here are 5 mistakes that can keep you awake

Several bad habits are likely to disrupt falling asleep and promote nocturnal awakenings. However, sleeping well is essential for our health and well-being. Sleep allows the body to recover both mentally and physically. Here are 5 mistakes to avoid in order to fall more easily into the arms of Morpheus and improve the quality of his nights.

Leave a light on

Even the smallest light can affect sleep and delay the phase of falling asleep. Even if you have your eyes closed, certain cells in the retina, called melanopsin ganglia, capture light. These will then stimulate brain activity and decrease the secretion of melatonin (sleep hormone). Before going to bed, it is therefore advisable to properly close the shutters and hide all light sources in the bedroom, such as the bedside lamp, candles, but also extremely minimal signals such as the TV standby light or the computer.

Using your smartphone

Another mistake: using your smartphone, computer or tablet before going to bed. The light emanating from these devices slows down the production of melatonin. This is why it is important to institute a digital curfew, “at least an hour before going to bed”, according to Marc Rey, president of the National Institute of Sleep and Vigilance (INSV). Besides the light, the specialist explains that one risks being “overstimulated by bad news” which can “be a source of stress”. Before bedtime, it is better to focus on a relaxing activity such as reading.

Turn up the heating

In winter, we are often tempted to increase the heating of our room. However, sleeping in an overheated environment will not promote sleep, on the contrary. You should know that when you are about to fall asleep, the internal temperature of the body drops slightly. The increase in the ambient temperature will thus disrupt this natural mechanism. INSV recommends keeping your room at a temperature of around 18 ° C. Note that taking a shower that is too hot or playing sports shortly before going to bed can have the same effect. There must be at least 3 hours between the end of the session and bedtime.

Eat a heavy meal and drink alcohol

In the evening, avoid eating a meal that is too large and too fatty because the body will take longer to digest it, which will disturb falling asleep. On the other hand, digestion causes an increase in body temperature. The ideal is to eat 2 to 3 hours before sleeping. We also limit the consumption of stimulants, such as cola, coffee, and other energy drinks containing caffeine. According to the National Institute of Sleep and Vigilance, it should be avoided after 2 p.m. This recommendation also applies to alcohol. It is a “false friend” of sleep. It disrupts the sleep cycle and can exacerbate certain disorders such as insomnia and apnea.

Sleep with your pet

To benefit from a restful sleep, it is finally recommended not to sleep with your dog or cat. Having your hairball near you before going to sleep is reassuring and comforting, but its presence can also be a source of nighttime inconvenience. He will move, lick himself, get up to drink, purr, claw, take up space in bed, or even start playing at dawn because our four-legged friends do not have the same rhythm of sleep than us. These are all factors that can affect the quality and quantity of our sleep.

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