How to Build a Better Bedtime Routine
Do you remember your childhood bedtime routine? Whether it involved reading a favorite bedtime story, listening to soothing lullabies, or saying goodnight to stuffed animals, those consistent routines were crucial for helping us wind down from the day to prepare for a good night of sleep.
As adults, many of us have phased out of that routine and into busier, more hectic lives. In fact, many of us would feel lucky to get a sufficient amount of sleep each night!
Bedtime routines aren’t just for children. Keep reading to learn about the importance of bedtime routines for adults—because better sleep tonight makes for a better day tomorrow.
Understanding the Importance of a Good Night’s Sleep
Most adults need between 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night. Chances are, you’ve experienced the consequences of sleep deprivation from time to time, whether due to poor-quality sleep or simply not enough sleep.
Signs of sleep deprivation include:
- Trouble focusing
- Increased stress, anxiety, or irritability
- Lack of energy
- Poor memory
- Constant yawning
- Under-eye bags
- Greater susceptibility to sickness
Consistent sleep deprivation can wreak serious havoc on both your physical and mental health—and according to the CDC, nearly one-third of American adults are chronically running low on sleep.
Better sleep begins well before bedtime. If sleep doesn’t come easy to you, you may want to consider implementing some healthy habits so that you’re ready for restful sleep the second your head hits the pillow at night.
Tips for Bedtime Routines for Adults
Your bedtime routine shouldconsist of healthy habits, behaviors, and environmental factors to improve the quality and quantity of your sleep.
Also known as “sleep hygiene,” these healthy habits should be a calming way to wind down and transition from a busy day to a restful night of sleep.
Some of our favorite sleep hygiene tips include:
Follow a Consistent Schedule
First, decide on a set bedtime. Ideally, thisshould be onethat you can maintain on weekdays and weekends alike, keeping in mind that consistent wake times are also important.
Avoid naps too, if possible. If you do need a quick snooze to get through the day, try to limit your naps to the early afternoon to avoid throwing off your sleep schedule.
Try to begin your bedtime routine at the same time each evening too, anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours before bed.
A consistent sleep schedule will keep you in a rhythm—a circadian rhythm, to be exact!
Cut Out Caffeine
While that extra cup of coffee during the day may help to boost your productivity at work, its stimulating effects could negatively impact your sleep schedule.
For most people, coffee in the morning and/or early afternoon is completely fine. However, if you find yourself lying awake in bed after an afternoon or evening cup of coffee, you may want to limit your overall caffeine intake. (Plus, you may not even need that extra energy boost if you’re consistently getting a good night’s sleep!)
For a caffeine-free energy boost, try switching out that afternoon coffee or energy drink for some Hilo Energize Gummies.
Minimize Screen Time
You may feel like you’re winding down if you’re mindlessly scrolling through social media or playing games on your phone until you feel sleepy. However, this isn’t exactly the case.
Understandably, the internet and TV shows don’t do a great job of helping our brains shut down for the day. In fact, that blue light from the screen actually tricks your brain into thinking it’s daytime, suppressing melatonin production and keeping you wide awake.
Schedule Time to Relax
Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to relax and wind down without binging a favorite show or mindlessly scrolling through our phones.
Start winding down from your day by unplugging with some relaxing, screen-free activities. For example:
- Warm bath
- Light yoga
- Journaling (or even just writing down tomorrow’s to-do list so you don’t lie awake thinking about it)
- Playing a low-key board game or puzzle
By transitioning into a calming evening activity and avoiding screens, you’re telling your brain that it’s time to start preparing for sleep; eventually, you’ll start to naturally feel more tired when it’s time for bed.
Choose Your Snacks Carefully
You certainly don’t want to go to bed hungry… but you also don’t want to eat something that will make you uncomfortable full or keep you awake with indigestion, acid reflux, or late-night bathroom visits.
If you need a snack before bed, opt for something light such as fruit, nuts, or yogurt. You can also try an herbal, non-caffeinated tea before bed as a way of calming your mind.
Creating the Ideal Sleep Environment
Your bedtime routine is only one part of promoting better sleep. Your bedtime environment is just as important, as your bedroom should be a comfortable, calming oasis for sleep.
For starters, you’ll want to be as comfortable as possible. Sleep in loose clothing, use a mattress and pillow that fit your preferences, and give yourself plenty of space to sprawl out if needed. You may also want to try using some soothing scents, such as a calming lavender essential oil.
Set your room to a cool, comfortable temperature, ideally between 60-67 degrees Fahrenheit. You can also try pointing a fan toward your bed to keep you cool through the night.
If noise keeps you awake, drown out sounds with ambient noise. That above-mentioned fan might do the trick; you may also want to consider a white noise machine, or even some comfortable ear plugs to block out noise.
Dim the lights, too. Whether you go all-out with blackout curtains or prefer to use a nightlight, it’s important to maintain low levels of light to guide your circadian rhythm.
Get your mind and body rested and ready for better sleep with Hilo Sleep Gummies. Made with natural ingredients such as chamomile, melatonin, and tart cherry, these tasty gummies are designed to promote better sleep so you can wake up well-rested and ready to take on your day.
Everyone is different. Sometimes, even the most well-planned out bedtime routine may not be enough to address poor sleep quality. If you’re constantly fatigued or have a sleep disorder such as sleep apnea or chronic insomnia, talk to your doctor or a specialist for individualized insight.