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Sleep Hygiene...What's That?

Sleep hygiene is essentially, your "bedtime routine"....and preparing your body for QUALITY SLEEP and REST in the most effective manner possible - for you!

What's your current bedtime routine? Are you engaging in screen time before bed? Are you eating a late dinner right before bedtime? Do you prefer to exercise right before bed? Hint: All of the above can actually compromise the quality of sleep that you get.

So, here are a few tips to promote healthy sleep:

  • Limit blue light exposure (screen time from your TV or computer or your phone!) 60-90 minutes prior to bed time (120 minutes, if possible!).

  • Additionally, avoid watching TV while in your bedroom - this is your place of rest and relaxation!

  • Avoid eating right before bed

  • Wind down to help prepare your body for rest. A few examples: reading, stretching/gentle yoga, meditation, etc.

  • Never go to bed angry. The rumination of thoughts, additional stress and excitatory neurotransmitter impulses can negatively impact cortisol levels and also disrupt your sleep cycle overall

  • To avoid that second wind of energy between 10-11pm at night, avoid caffeine intake after 2pm and also use any method to "wind down" so that you are not "wired but tired"

  • Look at the sun first thing in the morning! Why? Because this will optimize your cortisol diurnal pattern. Cortisol also helps regulate our energy throughout the day and also plays a big role in our sleep/wake cycle - i.e. our circadian rhythm!

  • Establish a bedtime routine that works and is manageable for YOU!

Sleep is incredibly important and really plays a role in stress & cortisol regulation as well. It is important that you wake up rested in the morning.

Please read these 2 blog articles to further round out your knowledge around sleep, stress & hormones!


Dr. Mawji

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