Dawn Bradley

How to prepare for a good night’s sleep

Here are some tips to help you get a good night’s sleep.
For best health it is now known that an adult needs between 7 and 8.5 hours sleep. Anything less and you will not only be tired, but you are damaging your long-term health.

  1. Set your alarm and get up at the same time every day
  2. No caffeine after 4pm (better still is not after lunch)
  3. Finish eating and drinking at least 3 hours before you go to bed
  4. Prepare for sleep 1 hour before going to bed: TV/screens/phone off. Shower/bath. Gentle stretches. Meditate. Visualise how you will feel when you wake feeling refreshed and energised.

If you wake in the night:

  1. Turn clock away so you can’t see the time. Do not check the time when you wake up.
  2. Gently rub the hollows behind your ears.
  3. Focus on your breath.
  4. Relax.
  5. A good silent mantra is “This too shall pass” or simply “Go to sleep”
  6. If you can’t settle, leave the bedroom: get up and do something else (watch TV or read a book) – or you’ll associate feeling frustrated and anxious every time you go to bed – a conditioned response.
    As soon as you start to feel sleepy again, go back to bed

How to prepare for the clocks going forward:

As the clocks change this weekend, it means more sun but daylight saving can leave us feeling a bit out of sorts. In fact, studies show sleep quality drops by 10% when the clocks change, so for insomnia sufferers it can be a difficult time. Here are 3 top tips from sleep-therapy to help you to sail into summer.

  1. During the week, move your bedtime and wake time earlier by 15 to 20 minutes a day so that by Sunday you are already set for the time change rather than doing it all in one go.
  2. Although it will be tempting to have a lie in on Sunday, try to stick to your usual wake up time by the clock so that your body can adjust.
  3. Daylight helps our bodies to wake up and adjust to the new time, so get out and about as much as you can.