Wellness Challenge Day 10: Get the recommended amount of sleep.
According to sleepfoundation.org, an adult needs between 7 to 9 hours of sleep. Children and teens will need more, and as we get older, it will decrease (7 to 8 hours for people over 65). One of the most common reasons we have for not getting enough sleep is that we don’t have the time or that we just can’t fall asleep when we decide to go to bed early.
There are no magic words yet to help us fall asleep faster, but there are some tips that we can integrate into our bed routine that can help. So here are 3 of my tips to fall asleep faster that I use and that I recommend. Enjoy!
Chamomile tea is something that I strongly recommend if you have a hard time falling asleep. I use it and it works every time.
Why this plant makes us sleepy? It’s because of apigenin, a chemical compound found in the plant. Apigenin activates the same receptors in the brain (GABA receptors) as anti-anxiety drugs do, which explains why it makes us feel sleepy and calm (Insider.com).
That is something that I have received as a gift that I cannot live without since then. I spray it on my pillow and in my room, and I fall asleep almost immediately.
Like chamomile, lavender is known for its calming properties, which can help to fall asleep faster. Why? Because it is the same brain receptors that are activated while taking chamomile tea: the GABA receptors. These receptors are the ones that receive the messages that help reduce nerve impulses (everydayhealth.com). These receptors are also responsible for our body’s response to stress, fear, and anxiety.
In order words, they are the receptors in our brain that receive the chemical messages to calm down.
Book instead of cellphone
It is probably not the first time you hear that reducing your screen time before bed helps you fall asleep, but let’s talk about the science that backs it up.
According to sclhealth.org, it’s because of the blue light. The blue light is emitted by our cellphones, and it decreases our production of melatonin. Have you ever heard of melatonin tablets? Well, blue light is kind of the opposite of those tablets that help with sleep. Switch for a book, at least 30 minutes before going to bed, and I bet you will see positive results;)
Looking for some good books to read?
Look at this previous post What I am reading
So this is it for this short post! These are tips that help me to go to bed faster, so I hope they can help you too.
I have to say that I have often neglected the importance of sleep too. However, by being aware of all the reasons why it is so important to have enough sleep (thanks to my psychology class), it is easier to put it as a priority. So to conclude, here are some of the reasons why sleep is so important:
- Sleep feeds our creative thinking.
- Sleep helps restore our immune system.
- Sleep helps increase our memory.
- Sleep allows our brain to sort out the information of the day. What information is useful, and which information can be discarded.
And finally, having a good night of sleep put us in a good mood, and a good mood also means wellness and happiness:)
The science behind chamomile: https://www.insider.com/does-chamomile-tea-make-you-sleepy
GABA receptors: https://www.everydayhealth.com/gaba/guide/
Cellphone and sleep: https://www.sclhealth.org/blog/2019/09/why-it-is-time-to-ditch-the-phone-before-bed/#:~:text=Blue%20light%20is%20harmful%20to,wake%20up%20the%20next%20day.