Sleep hygiene is a set of behaviours that positivity influence and support sleep and play an integral role in sleep quality, as well as feeling fully alert during the day. The aim of incorporating a sleep hygiene practice is to support the body’s natural sleep-wake rhythms and promote restful sleep. Sleep hygiene includes different practices and habits that can be incorporated during the day and at night, which is known as a bed time routine.
Good sleeping habits can benefit both adults and children, as obtaining healthy sleep is important for both physical and mental health, as well as improved productivity and quality of life.
Habits that can improve your sleep health:
- Practice regular sleep–wake patterns, go to bed at the same time each night and get up at the same time each morning, this includes weekends
- Exercise during the day, as little as 10 minutes of aerobic exercise, such as walking or cycling, can significantly import night time sleep quality
- Have a night time routine to encourage relaxation before retiring to bed, this can include reading, taking a warm shower or bath, or some light stretching
- Have a small snack or warm non-caffeinated drink when starting to wind down before bed
- Create a restful sleeping environment; a quiet and dark bedroom with a comfortable mattress and pillows
- Sleep in a temperature that is comfortable, 15°c to 20°c is recommended for optimal sleep
- Use white noise or ear plugs to block out noises that can disturb sleep https://www.finlandiahealthstore.com/life-candy-sleep-mask-black/
- Use anti-blue light glasses if you cannot avoid using devices before bed
Habits to avoid:
- Daytime napping
- Caffeine and nicotine consumption in the evenings
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Excessive fluid intake before bed
- Stressors or anxiety provoking activates before bed
- Evening activities that stimulate the mind or impair sleep, including strenuous exercise, diuretic drugs and using computers, televisions, or cell phones in the bedroom
Implementing sleep hygiene practices as listed above should always be the first point of call when addressing sleep issues as finding the underlying cause of sleeping issues is important. If a little extra help is needed herbal and nutritional aids can be used in conjunction with sleep hygiene practices. There is a wide selection of herbal and nutritional treatments, many that avoid the side effects and interactions which may affect normal functioning the next day.Many sleep supplements have comprehensive formulas which combine both herbs and nutritional sleep aids in one.
This herbal sleep formula has been scientifically designed, utilizing traditional herbal medicine to assist the body and mind to re-discover natural sleeping patterns and to aid the body to re-establish these natural rhythms in a balanced way. This formula uses herbs such Passion Flower (Passiflora incarnata), Chamomile Flower (Chamomilla matricaria), and Hops Strobile (Humulus lupulus) that help you fall and stay asleep, as well as have better focus and mental clarity due to proper rest.
Ortho Sleep™ is a comprehensive natural sleep formula that contains gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA) / and melatonin, as well as 5-HTP, a serotonin precursor. These compounds are key to sleep regulation as they help to modulate brain excitability, induce relaxation, help to reset the body’s sleep-wake cycle, and increase deep sleep phases, making sleep more restful. The formula further includes the amino acid L-theanine as well as Valerian Root (Valeriana officinalis), Passion Flower (Passiflora incarnata), and Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis), all of which possess relaxing properties, and work to increase the activity of GABA in the brain.
Finlandia's Magnesium Bis-glycinate is 100% pure magnesium bis-glycinate. It is not fortified or diluted with any magnesium oxide or other forms of magnesium. Magnesium has been found to regulate cellular timekeeping and is beneficial for maintaining normal circadian rhythms and quality sleep. Daily supplementations of 400mg of magnesium has been shown to increase the activity of our ‘rest and digest’ parasympathetic nervous system, reduced stress scores, and prevent magnesium deficiency and associated symptoms such as restlessness, sleep disorders, and lack of concentration.
Lesley O’Connor, BHSc is a certified senior herbalist at Finlandia’s own herbal dispensary. Lesley has a special interest in women’s health, especially postpartum care, and believes that all women should have access to emotional, physical and social support during the postnatal period.
Disclaimer: This article is for information purposes only. Please seek medical advice and treatment in case of illness. If you are pregnant or suffer from any illness, please seek advice from your healthcare provider regarding these or any supplements and herbs you may want to take.