A good night’s sleep is highly beneficial and essential for good health. It is, therefore, essential to address the issues that prevent you from getting the sleep you need. Part one of our Common Sleep Problems series considered the influence of bodily aches and technology on sleep. The second part of our series provides some practical advice to fix common sleep problems.
Are you having trouble staying asleep?
If you are finding it hard to stay asleep at night, you may want to try avoiding the use of electronic devices a couple of hours before bedtime. The light that is emitted from cell phones, computers, and tablets may disrupt your sleep-wake cycle. In addition, alcohol disrupts the balance of water in your body and affects your sleep.
Are you experiencing difficulty waking up?
Set your alarm to wake you at the same time every day, even on weekends, to train your body. You have to go to sleep early the night before if you want to wake up early the next morning feeling refreshed.
Problems with snoring
People who tend to snore should avoid sleeping on their back. Sleeping on your back causes the throat tissue to sag and your tongue to roll backwards, narrowing the airway.
Choose a pillow that is not overly soft as this causes your head to tilt back, increasing your snoring. You can also use an extra pillow to elevate your head.
Sleep on your side as this allows your body to be in a natural position and prevents obstruction of the airway.
Do special exercises of the throat and tongue to strengthen them and decrease snoring.
Problems with leg cramps
Leg cramps are spasms that result from the sudden tightening of the calf muscles.
You can relieve leg cramps by stretching and strengthening the muscles. Try yoga or exercises before bed.
Aching legs may also cause sleep problems. If you suffer from aching legs, place a rolled pillow at the foot of your bed so that your legs are elevated during sleep. The blood in the veins of your legs will run downward, making them feel better.
Heartburn may also prevent you from having a peaceful night. If you have heartburn, it’s best to sleep on your left side as this prevents stomach acid from going back up the oesophagus which causes heartburn.
The importance of a good night’s sleep cannot be understated. Whether you have to avoid caffeine before bedtime or massaging your feet before you go to sleep, make sure you get the rest your body needs.