Ideally, we all want to fall asleep as soon as our head hits the pillow. Whether it is a short nap during the day, or going to bed after a long and tiring day, at night, we want to fall asleep almost instantly. After all, who has the time and energy to work extra for something that should come to you naturally?
But this is an ideal scenario. In recent times, this would be called nothing more than wishful thinking. In reality, we need to try several new and innovative methods if we want to fall asleep fast.
First and foremost, you need to stay calm and relaxed throughout the day to get better sleep at night. Adopting a healthier lifestyle, that involves fresh food and more exercise would help achieve this goal. In short, if you want to ‘sleep like a baby’ you also have to go back to the simple ways of life and stay carefree, just like a little kid.
Learn about the types of sleep.
Some major deterrents to sleep
Before we suggest possible solutions to the problem, we need to discuss some main causes of poor-quality sleep. And for this generation, there’s no shortage of deterrents to sound sleep.
Advanced gadgets and increased screen time
Technology may have made complex day-to-day tasks simpler, but it hasn’t done much service to the simple things in life. Sounds complicated? Here’s an easier explanation.
It wouldn’t be wrong to call technology the opposite of nature. It hinders functions that should take place instinctively. Hence, bodily processes like appetite and sleep are adversely affected by increased screen time.
Deteriorating mental health
Undoubtedly, the world is going through a lot right now. With pandemics, conflicts, environmental issues, and so much more happening, the global population’s overall mental health is in shambles. Since sleep is directly linked to stress, this also means that sleeping issues are on the rise.
Our daily routine has a huge effect on the quality of sleep we get. The food we consume, the amount of exercise we do, and the level of stress we have in our lives are all factors that influence sleep patterns.
Unfortunately, the hectic routine these days makes matters even worse for those who already find it hard to fall asleep. With overly comfortable homes and working places, there barely any physical activity.
We may think that by hitting the gym for a couple of hours, we have had sufficient physical exertion. But compared to the previous generations that had to earn their bread and butter in a much harder way, we hardly move much.
The effects of inadequate/disturbed sleep
We can all agree that it is fairly hard to work on days when we have not had proper sleep. Our productivity tends to be much lower than the days when we’re well-rested. The mood also remains cranky and grumpy, even for people who are otherwise quite jolly.
Apart from this, there is a long-term effect on a person’s health. Suffering from sleep-related issues lowers your immunity significantly. You lose focus and concentration and performing simple tasks also starts to seem overwhelming.
The thing is, when you have trouble falling asleep, you get frustrated. Spending hours laying in bed, while you await sleep is a nightmarish experience. This time is generally spent overthinking or scrolling through your phone until you run out of content to explore.
You keep tossing and turning as your mind is not at ease. The brief sleep that follows is also not as sound as you’d like. As a result, you wake up tired and even more stressed.
Not to sound too alarming but lack of proper sleep has also been linked to more serious diseases. Sleep-deprived people are more likely to suffer from cardiovascular diseases, stroke, diabetes, and other serious health issues. Experts often suggest getting 7 to 9 hours of sleep a day to reduce this risk.
Without discussing the scientific details, it would suffice to say that sleep is essential to maintain good health for a longer period. Thus, it is also linked to life expectancy.
Remedies to fall asleep faster
So far, we have established two things. One, that our generation finds it quite hard to falls asleep fast for various reasons. Second, that this has severe consequences for our long-term health.
Now, just stating the problem and not suggesting helpful solutions wouldn’t be fair to the readers, would it? So, here’s a list of some remedies that you can try to fall asleep faster.
Your nervous system plays an important part in regulating your thoughts and emotions. So, stress primarily disturbs this system the most. You can reduce stress and improve sleep significantly by meditating for just a few minutes every day.
When you’re stressed, you tend to breathe faster. This causes panic and anxiety and makes you restless. Falling asleep in this state is obviously not too easy.
The main requirement of staying calm and relaxed is to focus on the current moment instead of worrying about a past or future event. Through meditation, you learn to focus solely on your breath and detach yourself from all kinds of stressful thoughts. If you’re fond of yoga, the ancient technique offers many simple but effective breathing exercises to improve sleep.
Some foods like coffee and chocolate, that contain high levels of caffeine should be avoided close to bedtime. Naturally, if we’re using caffeine to stay fresh and work long hours, we also have to give our body enough time without it to recover from the adrenaline.
Eating fresh and organic foods would not only improve your health but also make you sleep faster and better. Avoid excessive intake of foods with high levels of fat.
Reading before bed
Remember the good old habit of bedtime reading? It would put you to sleep even before someone finished narrating the story. Now as adults, some of those kids can only hope to fall asleep before the first rays of the sun start pouring in from the window.
Reading some light content, preferably fiction can be quite soothing. Choose a genre that you find relaxing and create a bedtime reading routine similar to childhood. Reading with soft, tranquil background music or sounds of nature may also help.
Reduce screen time
Like we said earlier, spending more time in front of a computer or mobile screen can make it harder to fall asleep. Even if you’re not using the phone at that particular moment, excessive usage during the has already done the damage. Your nerves become overstimulated and find it hard to calm down.
A common mistake these days is that in-between work or whenever we have some spare time, we find something to do on the phone. We have become enslaved to technology to such an extent that even recreational things can’t be done without it.
While you can’t avoid using a computer or phone for professional purposes, you can at least make sure that your leisure time does not depend on any such gadget. Moreover,
If you’re a couch potato and it takes you quite long to fall asleep, you have no one to blame other than yourself. Physical activity is important to make sure that you’re body feels tired enough to fall asleep. Hence, one must exercise regularly to avoid staying awake past the set bedtime.