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SLEEP YOURSELF... REFRESHED
One of the worse things about a poor night’s sleep is the negative impact it has on our energy levels. After full night of restorative rest our bodies are designed to wake up ready for action and eager to get going. If that feeling is something you can only dream of then that might be a sign that your sleep strategy needs a rethink. Here are three of the common problems and our tips on how to handle them...
Can’t Switch Off
Ever had one of those nights when your body is tired but your mind is just too wired to let you sleep? Whether it’s knowing you have a big day coming up or just the juggling of all the varied to do lists we seem to try and manage these days – we know that feeling.
How to solve it:
- Get organised – Keep a pen and paper by your bedside and end each day by listing out the things that are on your mind. Once they are down on paper it’s easier to relax and let them go for a few hours knowing you can tackle them in the morning.
- Tune out – Distraction works wonders. Listening to a podcast or audiobook at bedtime is a good way to butt your day to day thoughts out of your mind and get lost in another world for a little while.
- Try our CALM blend – Jasmine and sandalwood are both beautifully soothing for the mind and together they will help still your thoughts and calm your soul. As part of your nightly beauty routine, apply a few drops to our CALM Face After Dark Oil (either direct to skin or, if you prefer, add it to your usual night cream then apply as usual.). Before you apply, take three deep breaths (this also helps slow down your racing thoughts).
Aches & Pains
We sleep much better when we are comfortable so when our body is in pain is a poor night’s sleep often results. Of course, any pain that’s unexplained or that continues beyond a few days requires a visit to the doctor’s. But beyond that here are another few to help get rid of those aches and pains that are keeping you awake at night
How to solve it:
- Check out your sleeping position – Sleeping on your front puts pressure on your spine and can lead to neck and back aches. If you are a back sleeper, a pillow under your ankles might help alleviate any stress to your lower back. Side sleeping with knees bent slightly is what most physios will recommend. Make sure your pillow is supporting the weight of your head (if you can fold it in half, then it’s not doing its job). Check out our blog to see what your sleep position says about you and how it might impact how you feel the next morning. (LINK to sleeping position blog)
- Do a mattress check – Given how important sleep is to our wellbeing and health, a good mattress is up there in terms of things worth investing in. If yours has seen better days then it might be time to go shopping. Turn mattresses every few months to ensure they wear evenly and keep them clean and well protected with a mattress topper.
- A soak in warm (not hot) bath loaded up with mineral salts can work wonders to ease tired muscles. Our Bedtime Bath Salts contain both Dead Sea Salts and Epsom Salts to detox muscles and dial up magnesium levels (that’s the sleepy hormone, which is why they are so perfect at bedtime). They also contain our night-time aromatherapy oils. The DREAM blend is our go to choice when we are feeling flu-ey or achey as the combination of Lavender, Bergamot, Cedarwood & Chamomile works wonders to soothe tired limbs.
Body Clock Out of Synch
Whether it’s caused by jet lag or working shifts – it’s hard to regulate sleep patterns when our natural circadian rhythms are not working like clockwork. As humans, we’re programmed to sleep when the sun goes down. The darkness and cooler temperatures send a signal to our brain that it’s time for some shut eye. When we ignore these rules it means we have to fight the natural order of things – and that’s not easy to do.
How to solve it:
- Get light smart – By creating a space to sleep in which is totally dark, quiet and cool it’s possible to recreate the natural cues that nature uses to send is to sleep. Heavy light-blocking curtains and a do not disturb sign can work wonders. Don’t ruin it by having screens in there though – the blue light that phones, commuters and tv screens emit are a wake up signal to the brain. Switch off at least an hour before you want to fall asleep.
- Go to bed tired – Obvious right? But by this we mean not just mentally tired (who doesn’t?), but physically tired. Being active during the day has been proven to help increase the chance of a decent night’s kip. So make sure you get some exercise through the day. Extra points if you can do it outdoors and in a natural space (this boosts all the positive hormones even more and ensures your body gets flushed with daylight). If exercising close to bedtime is unavoidable, keep it light (stretching, yoga, a gentle swim), as anything too vigorous and you’ll take some time to wind down.
- Have a plan B to hand – For nights when you do wake up too soon, have a plan B to hand. We’re talking about something you can reach out and do without having to turn the light on (that will wake you up more). Our bedside table must haves for nights like these are an audio book and a dab of our DREAM After Dark Sleep Balm on our temples and wrists - you’ll drop back off in no time.