Sleep is the best, right?
It's like a holiday from all your problems, a chance to relax and recharge. But let's be honest: getting to sleep isn't always as easy as it sounds. When you finally get into bed, it takes forever to fall asleep. Or you fall asleep easily and wake up at 2 am, tossing and turning. If one of these describes you, you're not alone—and that's the problem.
What is sleep hygiene?
Sleep hygiene is basically how you behave during the day and before bed that affects how well you sleep at night. And there are plenty of things we can do to improve our sleep hygiene (hint: it's not washing our face or brushing our teeth – but important to do those things too!) Poor sleep hygiene is a problem. More than one-third of us aren't getting the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep, which is a real bummer because we know how much it sucks to be sleep-deprived.
Did you know that not sleeping enough can make you feel sad, anxious, and slow? Sleep deprivation slows our reflexes, saps our creativity, and makes us more susceptible to depression. It's no joke. A recent study found that poor sleep hygiene might make us more prone to depression. The study showed that people who weren't getting enough sleep had trouble shifting their attention away from negative thoughts and ideas, making them more vulnerable to depression than people who get the recommended amount of rest each night.
The Good News: getting good sleep is easier than you might think.
For example, you can start to practice healthy sleep hygiene habits that will encourage better rest and help you stay refreshed and aware during the day.
Here's a guide to creating the ideal conditions for healthy, restful sleep:
The number one point sleep specialists will tell you to get better sleep is to set a consistent sleep schedule. This means going to bed and waking up at the same time every day, including weekends. If you do this, your body will begin to regulate itself — instead of staying awake at night, your body will learn to fall asleep naturally when you hit the sack.
Follow a nightly pre-bedtime routine.
Try dry brushing. Dry brushing is the act of gently brushing your skin with a stiff-bristled brush or loofah to stimulate the lymphatic system and encourage the efficient removal of waste by-products from your tissues and organs. Using a medium firmness natural bristled brush, brush your skin in long sweeping strokes, starting at your hands and always brushing toward the heart.
Super simple — pour about four tablespoons of unrefined organic coconut oil into hands and rub them together until they get warm. Starting at your feet, rubbing oil on feet and calves. A half-hour massage at night will really help you relax and focus on what's going on with your body.
Optimise bedroom temperature.
While the optimal temperature for a bedroom is around 18 degrees Celsius. Some people prefer it colder, and some people like it warmer. Either way, make sure your mattress and pillows are comfortable so your body can relax and fall asleep. If your room is too hot and stuffy, you won't be able to get the sleep you need.
Dim the lights after dark
When you're trying to get some shuteye, your body clock can work against you. After all, it's not called a circadian rhythm for nothing—your day-night cycle is meant to keep you up when the sun is still out and help you sleep when it's dark outside. That's why the light from your laptop or phone might be messing with your sleep: The blue light from electronics can interfere with the release of melatonin. This hormone helps us wind down and fall asleep at night. But don't worry! Dimming the lights after dark can help. Think about shutting off lamps and turning off any electronics an hour or so before bedtime—that way, your body will start getting ready for bed even though it's still light out.
Avoid stimulants late in the day.
Late-night coffee dates with your BFF? Not so fast. Avoid caffeine 6 hours before bedtime if you're having trouble sleeping. We all know that sipping a cup of joe can make the day go by faster, but when it comes to bedtime, caffeine is a major buzzkill (and not just because it keeps you awake). Caffeine is a stimulant, which means it keeps your mind in overdrive — and prevents you from taking on that "zombie" state where you can really be present at the moment and drift off to sleep easily.
And of course, you can try a bottle of DRIFT which we made to help you drift off the sleep ...naturally.