Habits You Do That Are Keeping You Up At Night

By Nick Hadji 11 months ago

1. You're drinking caffeine close to bed time!

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Drinking caffeine close to bedtime (or less than a couple of hours before) is NEVER a good idea if you want a good night sleep rather than to pull an all-nighter. Caffeine is a stimulant, meaning it will give us a boost of energy. Not a good idea when you're trying to get to sleep.Original content sourced from Femanin.com

2. You're using screens before you sleep

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Yes, a lot of us cannot get off our phones and we know how hard it is put them down. Or how easy it is to wait to get to the end of your Netflix episode before you can fall asleep. But screens of any variation emits blue light - this blue light suppresses hormone melatonin which is regulated our sleep.

3. You eat too much before you go to bed

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You ate dinner a few hours ago, you're getting a little bit hungry, and you fancy some snacks before bed. But don't overdo it just before you sleep, it will weigh heavily on your stomach, making you uncomfortable, thus meaning that you'll probably struggle to fall asleep or you'll wake up throughout the night.

4. You drink too much alcohol

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Who sleeps well after a night being a party animal on the town? No one, surely! Drinking too much before you sleep is bound to disturb your sleep, making you wake up intermittently and not allowing yourself to get a good quality sleep. This is because you are not able to enter the deep sleep phase/ REM phase.

5. You take long naps in the day

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Napping can be great, but you've got to time it well. Taking long naps or naps close to bedtime is always risky. And, more often than not (even if it feels worth it at the time) you'll regret it when you're laying in bed awake at night, or waking up at all kinds of hours in the night.

6. You don't switch off mentally

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Switching off is hard. Especially in a modern world of constant communication and technology. It can be hard to have that down time for yourself. But taking some time before bed to switch off and actually relax (not on your phone) is super important for your brain to take some time out from over stimulation!

7. You exercise too late

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Exercise is one of the greatest stimulation boosts, it gets the blood flowing around our body and so, it gives us a few hours of feeling alert and energised. So, exercising before bed is extremely admirable, if you want a good night sleep then try exercising in the morning instead!

8. You eat spicy foods before sleeping

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If you're extremely used to eating spicy foods, this won't affect you so much. If not, then it could cause you some mild symptoms of indigestion/heartburn, or even aggravation in your stomach which when you lie down, may worsen and keep you awake at night...

9. You use your bed to work

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If you work from home then it's extremely tempting to use your bed as an 'office'. But it's always best to distinguish different aspects of our lives in separate spaces. Our bed should be our place or relaxation, something we associate with rest. Then, when you get in bed your brain and body know it's time to sleep - NOT work.

10. You change your sleep pattern a lot

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A regular sleep pattern is great for letting your body and mind know when sleep is coming, so that it automatically assumes it's time to sleep. This, makes sleeping a hell of a lot easier. If you're pattern is always shifting, it's no wonder your body does not know when to sleep!

11. Your room is too light

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Darkness means that our brain has less stimulation, because there is no light signalling to our brains to be alert. So whether you need to switch off all of your screens properly, or invest in some blackout curtains, it will totally be worth it when it helps you sleep more soundly.

12. You're sleeping with too much background noise

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Again, similar to light, noises send signals to our brain receptors. So, if our brain is alert and tuning in to these noises it will be a lot harder to fall asleep. Or, to stay asleep undisturbed. Try and make your room as sound proof as possible, or get yourself some earplugs to help you sleep soundly.

13. You don't have a supportive mattress

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It's said that we should exchange our mattress every few years. And we know, that doesn't come cheap! Then again, sleep is invaluable and a good night sleep really does affect the quality of your day - and life. So make sure that your mattress is supporting you. Perhaps it's causing you discomfort that is stopping you from getting a peaceful night's sleep.

14. You don't regulate your temperature

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You may be thinking, how do you regulate your temperature in your sleep? It's all about having the right bedding/pyjamas. If you think you're cold in the night, sleep with extra layers. If you're waking up sweating, then perhaps your duvet/blanket is too thick. Make sure you adjust these to fit the seasonal weather.

15. You drink too much just before you go to bed

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Drinking water is great for your health. But, if you're still gulping gallons straight before bed, then chances are you don't have a bladder of steel and you're going to need to go to the toilet a few times. If this sounds like you, try and not consume TOO much liquid for the couple of hours before you go to bed.

16. You sleep in a bad position

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It's hard to control how you sleep. But, going to sleep in a comfortable position is key. If you're falling asleep with your phone in your hand, and your face on your hand...there's no way you can get a good, deep sleep. Go to bed in a supportive position for your body so that being uncomfortable won't wake you up.

17. You don't do enough physical exertion in the day

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Have you ever had that feeling where your mind is tired, but your body is not? Sometimes, when we aren't sleeping it's because we are not doing enough physical exertion. One of the best hacks to sleep well is to exercise regularly at the beginning of the day.

18. You have sugary snacks before night time

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Sugary snacks are not good just before bed. The sugar will cause an energy spike. And, just as we get into bed, ready to sleep, a rush of energy is exactly what we do NOT need. So cut out the sugar before bed, and if you do need a snack get something that won't give you a quick surge of energy.

19. You have too much on your mind

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One of the main reasons that people cannot sleep properly is because they have too much on their mind. There are definitely lot's of ways to help this. Meditation, or talking through your thoughts earlier in the day, or taking a walk in nature are some ways to clear your head. Then, by the time it comes to bed time you should feel slightly lighter.

20. You smoke

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Smoking in general can inhibit your sleep and your sleep pattern. Especially, if you're smiling right before bed. The tobacco interferes with your sleep and can keep you awake longer, or make you wake up intermittently throughout the night. For more reasons than just this, it could be time to kick the habit!

21. You're having emotional conversations late at night

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Whether it's deep chats in bed, or emotional facetime chats, it's not the right kind of conversation  to have before you sleep. As soon as you shut your eyes, the conversation is whirring around and around in your head. Your emotions are heightened, keeping you awake. Try a light topic next time! Or, even better -  something super boring to help you sleep right away! We're kidding, but it's worth a try, right?

22. You sleep with the television on

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Whatever you're watching, it's going to distract you in some way. And even if you're thinking that it helps you sleep, it probably isn't helping you get a good night's sleep all the way through. The sounds will alert us if something sounds slightly louder/ changes key, and may wake you without you even realising why.

23. You go to sleep on an argument

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Haven't you heard the famous saying - never go to bed on an argument? It's there for a reason. It's extremely hard to sleep after an argument because all of our emotions are heightened, our adrenaline kicks in which doesn't allow us to sleep, and you can't stop thinking about it!

24. You have a messy bedroom

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Have you ever heard the expression, 'a tidy room is a tidy mind'. This wasn't just something that our parents told us to get us to tidy our rooms. There's actually truth in it. If you are sleeping in a messy environment, you can't relax. Even if you don't realise, the mess will be subconsciously inhibiting you from sleeping soundly.

25. You haven't made your room comfortable

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You'd be surprised how much making our space comfortable and homely really helps us sleep. Your bedroom should be your comfort zone, and so make it homely and cosy and personalise it! A little effort really will help you feel more relaxed and peaceful which in turn will help you sleep SO much better.

26. You stress about the fact you can't sleep

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'It's 1AM, I only have 6 hours of sleep left'...'it's 3 AM I only have 5 hours sleep left, I'll be so tired!' We've all done it, but this kind of stressing really makes things worse. And, what use it is? None at all. Instead of counting down, if you destress by accepting the fact that until you get into your routine you may be a little bit more tired, and it will be okay, - then it can really help you sleep!

27. When you can't sleep, you pick up your phone

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The thing NOT to do when you can't sleep, is to pick up your phone. But, what do we do when we can't sleep? Pick up our phones. Instead, try reaching for a book. This can tire you out without over stimulating your mind, helping rather than inhibiting your sleep further!

28. You drink too much energy drinks

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It can be a vicious cycle. We get it, you don't sleep properly so you wake up exhausted, and to get yourself through the day, you grab an energy drink. Only, this won't help, in fact it will make it worse! All of the sugars and caffeine will keep you wide awake.

29. You change where you sleep a lot

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Consistency is key when it comes to sleep. Sometimes, we can't help it - we have to move around. But our brain is aware of different sounds, different smells...so it's harder for us to relax and sleep. Try sleeping in the same place for a while to get some good rest.

30. You share your bed with your pet

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Who doesn't want to sleep next to their gorgeous fur baby? We completely get it. But, when you're waking up through the night to a paw in the face, or a slobbery wet lick on the ear - it's probably not doing your sleep so much good. If you don't want to be apart (why would you?) then try making them their own bed just next to your bed instead.

31. So how can you get a better night's sleep? Expose yourself to more natural light throughout the day!

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You might have heard people talking about your natural sleep cycle, but your body is very good at knowing when it's time to sleep all by itself. But one way to give it a helping hand is light levels - your body should know light = awake and dark = sleepy time, so the more light you expose yourself to throughout the day, the more your body will be ready for sleep when it's dark at night.

32. Quit those screens before bed

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We know how important it is to check that Instagram feed after you get into bed, but really it might not be doing you any favors. Having a cut off point for screens and blue light (a few hours before bed) will help to prep your eyes and mind for tired bedtime.

33. Leave your coffees for mornings

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We understand why you might need a late afternoon pick-me-up (the caffeine kind), but leaving your caffeine early in the day and avoiding it later on can help you to sleep better at night. You don't want to feel totally wired when you're climbing into bed to sleep!

34. Ditch those naps (we know it's hard)

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You might think napping is helping you to get all the sleep you need, but really all it might be doing is making it so you're more awake when you actually tuck in for the night. If you can hold off on the afternoon nap and then get an early night, this will be much better.

35. We hate to say it, but an alarm clock helps

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We don't mean you have to set your alarm for stupid o'clock on weekends, but basically the best way to sleep better is to train your body to sleep and wake at the same times every day. If you like a very long lie in then an alarm clock can help you to still wake up at the same time as other days.

36. You could even consider sleep aids

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A sleep aid like Melatonin supplements might help you to get into a better sleep pattern, too. Melatonin is a sleep hormone which helps your brain to understand when it's time to sleep, so taking supplements might help you to drift off better when it's time for bed.

37. Don't drink alcohol late at night

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We know that having a nightcap or finishing off that glass of wine right before you get up to go to bed can signal a great end to an evening, but it's not going to do you many favors for sleep. If you do want to drink, try do it as an after-work drink or early in the evening.

38. Try redecorating your bedroom

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Your environment is going to make a huge difference to your sleep, so if your bedroom is painted a bright color you hate, it won't help you to relax. Colors like blue or green have been labelled as great relaxing bedroom colors, but at the very least just redecorate to something you find soothing!

39. Or, at the very least, optimize it!

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If you don't have the money, time or energy to redecorate your bedroom right now, you can at least tidy it up and optimize it for sleep. If you have piles of laundry, clutter and mess everywhere, it's not going to be a relaxing environment for your to fall asleep!

40. Switch up the temperature in your bedroom

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Room temperature can make a difference to how comfortable you feel in bed - if you're too hot or too cold, it's going to be an uncomfortable tossing-and-turning kind of night. So if you can adjust the room's temperature - and vary it with seasons - it might help.

41. Try to avoid eating late at night

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We know how busy life gets, but if you're stuffing down a hot curry at 10pm because you were working late, it's not going to leave you feeling relaxed for bed. Your digestion system will kick in late at night and it'll make you feel more awake because your body is working rather than resting.

42. Find a relaxation routine before bed

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Whatever relaxation means to you, find it right before bedtime! Whether it's a hot bath, reading a chapter of your favorite book or watching an ASMR video on TikTok, find your relaxing routine and make sure to do it in preparation for bed so that your mind can wind down.

43. Make sure your mattress is the right one for you

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It's amazing the different the right mattress firmness can make. Even if your mattress is in superb condition, if it's not the right firmness for you, it could be disrupting your sleep. Make sure to try out different mattress firmness to find the best match for your sleep position.

44. Switch a morning shower to an evening one

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It can help you to relax if you have your warm shower right before bed. The warm water can help you to feel relaxed, but you also might feel more comfortable in bed if you're feeling nice and clean rather than still carrying the day's dirt! It might help you save time in the morning, too.

45. Make sure to check in with your doctor if you're struggling

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There are many reasons you could be struggling to sleep, and while a lot of them can be environmental, there's always always a chance you might have a sleep disorder or health issues which your doctor will be able to look into if you've tried everything and still can't sleep.

46. A good pillow can make a difference too

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There's a lot of focus on mattress and duvets, but a good pillow can make the world of difference, too. Some people do better with firm pillows rather than soft - and vice versa - but you can also get pillows which are moulded or memory foam to help with neck and back support.

47. Try to keep your exercise to earlier in the day

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It's not your fault if work or life schedules mean you can only work out late at night, but if you're exercising too close to bedtime it can make you feel more alert, awake and have your body full of energy and endorphins. To get better rest, try to exercise early evening, or morning (or any time of day, really!).

48. Try not to drink anything right before bed

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This doesn't mean alcohol, but anything really - because if you're downing a glass of any liquid before bed then chances are you're going to need to pee at some point during the night, and this will disturb your sleep pattern. Get in enough liquid and water an hour or two before bed!

49. Go for ear plugs if you need them

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If you can't sleep because you have very sensitive hearing or you live in a loud environment like a city, then definitely try to invest in a good pair of ear plugs. You can even spend a little more and get some that have been moulded to your exact ear shape so that they fit perfectly!

50. Consider separate beds

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It's never fun to have a partner that snores, tosses and turns or just generally disrupts your sleep. As much as it isn't fun to have to sleep separate from your partner, even a few night's a week when you really need sleep might help you to get into a good restful routine.