Getting More Restful Sleep

Note: This is a guest post from Xela Keith-Chirch. 


How did you sleep last night? Was it restful? Did you feel refreshed? Or did you feel grumpy and tired? We all need good, restful sleep. Not just so we feel rested and rejuvenated, but so we can relax and repair ourselves. Our body works hard during the day, so we should give it a break. When we sleep, our body’s immune system kicks in and starts replacing worn-out cells with new ones, produces more growth hormones, and the hormone dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). This is the time your body takes to repair and reorganize.

Some of the tips I’ve come across during my research were to make sure your body gets good and restful sleep. First, make sure you have an established bedtime. If you go to bed at about the same time every night, you will get more peaceful sleep. Also, if you have a routine, your brain will learn that after you brush your teeth, take a shower, or get into bed, it’s sleep time.

A couple of other tips are to set the stage, so to speak, so you can relax and drift off in peace. Make sure you have no electronics, such as a computer or TV in your bedroom, as they can be distracting. Listen. Rainfall, ocean waves, or other soothing sounds can really help you calm down and sleep. Smells also can help. Good smells, that is, like lavender or rose essential oils. It’s been scientifically proven that when you smell something like lavender, the level of cortisol, a stress hormone, goes down and the levels of antioxidants go way up. Therefore, sniffing to sleep can be relaxing and healing. Now, remember to get a good night’s sleep!

***Resource: Sears, William, MD and Sears, Martha, RN. Prime Time Health: A Scientifically Proven Plan for Feeling Young and Living Longer. New York: Little, Brown, and Company, 2010.

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