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Why is sleep important?

Sleep is essential for good health and wellbeing. Adults aged over 18 years old should be having around 7-9 hours of sleep per night. [1] However, recent studies have shown that 40% of adults and children suffer from sleep issues. [2] This could be a cause for concern, as our bodies are working whilst we are asleep to support a healthy brain function and maintain our physical health. [3] In children, sleep can play an important role as sleep can help support growth and the development of children.

How can we get a better night’s sleep?

Although there are 40% of adults and children within the UK that suffer from sleep issues. [4] There can be some steps and actions to reclaim some rest and try and get the sleep that our bodies need!

The 3 simple steps to improve sleep quality

Below are the top three simple steps that we can implement to improve our sleep quality tonight:

1. Keep away from electronics before you sleep

Ofcom statistics shows that 95% of people have mobile phones and 72% of people are on social media. [5] Although we use social media on a daily basis and may flick through feeds. Studies suggest that blue light could have a negative impact on our sleep. One study stated that blue light has been “emitted from devices suppresses the natural production of melatonin, which affects the hormone we need to sleep and disrupts our circadian rhythm.” [6]

Some tips to help reduce the amount of electronics we use before we go to sleep could include:

  • Investing in blue-light blocking glasses
  • Having “Night Mode” on your mobile device
  • Reducing social media time at least an hour before we go to sleep
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2. Follow a consistent sleeping schedule

Some people may have the question as to whether it is good to track your sleep data? This could be a good idea as it may encourage us to schedule our sleep and get into the habit of going to sleep at the same time. However, by getting into the habit of tracking how much sleep we get, we could get more anxious about our sleeping pattern.

Some tips that we could do to help schedule our sleep could include:

  • Creating a diary and checking your sleep schedule and reflecting on whether this has improved the ability to sleep.
  • Do not take caffeine before you go to sleep. As this may affect your sleeping schedule.

3. Using natural supplements

Once you have kept away from electronics before you sleep and follow a sleeping schedule best suited for you and reducing caffeine. Another step that could possibly help for a better quality night’s sleep is taking natural supplements.

Some natural ingredients within supplements that can improve your quality of sleep include:

  • Magnesium is a vitamin that plays an important role not only with sleep but with bone health too! [7] A small amount of studies suggest that if we have low magnesium levels, we could potentially have problems with our sleep. [8] “Magnesium can also help activate neurotransmitters that are responsible for calming the body and the mind.” By magnesium helping the nervous system by calming the body and mind it can help prepare the body and mind for sleep. [9] Therefore, by adding magnesium supplements or foods rich in magnesium it could potentially help with your sleep.
  • Ashwagandha is a natural ingredient and a medicine that has been around for years. Early studies suggest that Ashwagandha may help us fall asleep faster and experience a better quality sleep. [10] One early study suggested that “after six weeks of people taking Ashwagandha, people suggested that their sleep was 72% better, on average.” [11]

Key Takeaways

The key points from this blog on how to get a better night’s sleep include:

  • Keeping away from electronics before going to sleep.
  • Investing in blue-light blocking glasses.
  • Having “night mode” on your mobile device.
  • Reduce social media time at least an hour before we go to sleep.
  • Following a consistent sleeping schedule.
  • Avoid drinking caffeine before you go to sleep.
  • Using natural supplements including supplements with Magnesium and Ashwagandha.

This blog provides general information and discussion about health and related subjects. The information and other content provided in this blog are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice, nor is the information a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment.