Let's face it as mums it can be quite rare to get a good night sleep, I mean a really good night sleep where you hit the pillow, doze off into dreamland and don't wake up until your alarm goes off.
Depending on how old your children are you may have different sleep patterns, if you have a baby you are most likely still waking a few times a night, if you have school aged kids you are probably getting a bit more sleep, unless you are staying up and doing their homework for them, which is a whole other blog. No matter what stage you are at there are still ways to improve and ensure that you get a restful night sleep.
At the beginning of the year I was burnt out, yep this was before school even started. I really assessed a lot of areas in my life and sleep was one that I knew needed improving, I was constantly tired irritable and low on energy. I did some research and started to change a few things when it came to sleeping and this is what I found helped.
Remove any technology, electronics or TV from the room. I know this is hard I love nothing better than curling up in bed when the kids are asleep and binge watching the housewives of Beverly Hills. But this actually got me into a routine of not going to sleep before midnight, even though I had climbed into bed at 8pm. Since we have removed TV from the bedroom not only have I been getting to sleep earlier but my husband and I have also connected more as a couple. The same goes for mobile phones, if you use it for your alarm clock place it outside of your door so you won't be tempted to pick it up if you go to the bathroom during the night or before you sleep. I have also set my phone to silent, and it is amazing not only how much I get done during the day but how much more sleep I get at night.
Reduce caffeine intake, now from someone who has 3 coffees before 10am this can be hard but the truth is it does keep you awake, after all isn't that why we drink it? Experts suggest that you drink your last cup before 2pm to ensure you aren't kept up at night. Caffeine can also dehydrate you which will have you drinking more water and up to the bathroom more frequently at night as well. So swap the coffee after 2pm for herbal tea.
Avoid alcohol as a sleep aid, we have all heard the old wise tales of take a nip of Baileys or a glass of red wine to make you sleep better, but it's been proven that drinking before bed can actually make you wake up more during the night and also feel foggier the following morning.
Exercise but if you are someone who gets energised after exercise then consider doing it no later than 4 hours before you plan on sleeping. This way you are sure not to feel wide awake after a night gym work out.
Keep pets off the bed, yep sorry fluffy but no more sleeping with us. If you have a cat like ours that feels that they can sleep on your head and push their claws into your neck then it doesn't make for a good night sleep. Give them plenty of cuddles before bed and then pop them to sleep somewhere else.
Limit your water intake before bed so you are not getting up to go to the toilet at night, and try not to overeat or eat heavy foods that sit in your stomach as you are more likely to feel uncomfortable in bed and change positions frequently.
Access your bed, pillows and linen. We use a high thread count for our sheets and to me it really makes a difference in comfort, we also have good feather pillows that are good for our necks and not long ago we got introduced to Protect-A-Bed® Miracle Layer™ which is a protector for your mattress that is waterproof from moderate spills and stains, protects us from dust mites, mould and bacteria which is great because I suffer from bad allergies. Since using Protect-A-Bed® Miracle Layer™ we have had better night's sleep especially since it has a silky smooth TENCEL® sleep surface and is softer then silk and cooler then linen. We have them on all the beds in our house and as they are great quality we know they are a good investment, especially since they are washer and dryer friendly. Our main reason for switching out our old Mattress protector to this one was because my allergies were keeping me up at night especially once seasons changed. Since we put the Protect-A-Bed® Miracle Layer™ on our bed this has been limited dramatically.
And my last tip is try to relax before bed, I know life can be stressful especially as mums we often have a lot on our plate. A pre bed ritual like a bath, meditation, reading a book or just sitting and relaxing will make for a better night sleep.
If you are having trouble sleeping try these tips and let us know how you go!