Sleep is incredibly important to our physical and mental well-being. Contrary to popular belief, Baby Boomers like us still need to aim for 7 – 9 hours of quality sleep each night. Few of us have success hitting that target and that can seriously affect our health.
The day after a bad night’s sleep, you are likely to feel drowsy and unmotivated, which will result in you struggling to focus.
In the long term, consistently failing to get sufficient shuteye can have adverse effects on your mental well-being and memory. It can also impact your physical health by increasing the likelihood of developing certain conditions, such as heart disease.
Let’s take a look at 10 sleep-stealing problems and how to tix them.
1. A Cluttered Bedroom
Believe it or not, studies have shown that having cluttered surroundings can make you feel more stressed out and on edge. So, having a messy bedroom can potentially make it more difficult for you to fall asleep.
It’s easier said than done, but the solution here is to clean up and get organizing. Start by throwing away what you can, and then pack and organize the things that you want to keep.
2. Going to Bed Hungry
We’ve all gone to bed hungry on occasion – perhaps because of a special diet that prohibits eating at night or maybe just being too tired to make a sandwich.
While overeating before bedtime is not a good idea, it is important to avoid going to bed hungry too, as your body may wake you up in the middle of the night (as it wants you to feed it) and disrupt your sleeping pattern.
Budget your calorie intake during the day so you’ll have a few hundred calories to spare in the evening, so you can have something to eat (ideally a protein-rich snack) an hour or so before you plan on going to bed.
3. Overthinking Stressful Life Issues
Many of us start to worry as soon as our heads hit the pillow when our brain finally has a chance to think about our troubles or the things we’re feeling anxious about. This can make sleeping feel impossible, no matter how hard you try to switch off your brain, but there is a very simple and effective solution.
As soon as you start feeling anxious and overwhelmed, you should leave your bed and go to another room for a few minutes. Be sure not to switch on any lights or check your phone. Then, you can return to your bed, and you should hopefully fall asleep easily.
4. Sleeping For Too Long
Many of us enjoy sleeping in on the weekend or after staying up late, but this is a sure-fire way to disrupt your body’s internal clock. So, even if you go to bed really late, avoid the temptation to sleep much longer than usual.
5. Exposure to Blue Light
Blue light can disrupt your circadian rhythm and make your body think it’s still daytime, making it feel less sleepy. So, it’s advisable to limit your screen time before you go to bed, and you should also try to minimize any ambient light exposure in your room (from an alarm clock, for example.)
You might also consider wearing a pair of Blue Light blocking glasses for an hour or so before you go to bed. Here’s an excellent and affordable example:
6. A Noisy Bedroom
Noise is unsurprisingly something that keeps many of us awake at night, but it’s usually irregular noises which stop us from falling asleep. So, to mask these noises (from a neighbor or outside, for example), you can play relaxing music or natural sounds like rainfall.
Here’s a device that covers up the annoying random noises that prevent you from falling asleep and replaces them with pleasant, relaxing sounds. It’s only $20 and if it doesn’t help, you can return it.
7. Snoring (or Sleeping Next to a Snorer)
Sleeping next to someone who’s snoring at any volume is unpleasant, and, as it can reach almost 100 decibels, it is loud enough to wake many of us up. It’s nearly impossible for anyone to sleep through that!
And if you’re the guilty party and you’re keeping your partner awake with your snoring… Well, the considerate thing to do is try fixing your own snoring issues 😬
There are a few different ways to tackle snoring, such as asking your partner to sleep on their side (instead of their back), and there are also a few products you can buy that are specifically designed to reduce snoring.
Here are a couple of proven snore-reduction products you might consider trying:
8. Pets in The Bedroom
Our furry friends often like to sleep with us, but they sometimes wake up in the middle of the night and subsequently wake their owners up. To avoid this, it’s advisable to make your pet sleep in a separate room – ideally with a dedicated sleeping space and some nighttime only toys to keep them entertained in case they wake up.
9. Dust Mites
Dust mites can secrete a residue that some people are allergic to, making it harder to fall asleep.
To tackle this, you should regularly vacuum your bedroom and use linens and pillowcases that block mites.
10. Hormonal Changes
As we age, fluctuations in our hormone levels can make it difficult to get comfortable and fall asleep. Changes in your estrogen and progesterone levels can affect your sleep directly and indirectly. This is true for both men and women.
Many women encounter sleep difficulties during perimenopause, the time before menopause when hormone levels and menstrual cycles are changing. These sleep issues tend to stick around even post-menopause.
You can try out over the counter medication, which is specifically designed to level out hormones. Taking a warm bath before bed may also be helpful.
Bonus Tip: Try An Organic Sleep Supplement
We published an article here on BoomerBuyerguides.com that includes a discussion on organic sleep supplements in some detail. Our bonus tip is to consider trying a sleep aid that includes CBN as it’s primary ingredient.
CBN has become known as the “Sleepy Cannabinoid.” It is derived from “hemp” as opposed to “marijuana” so, as with it’s more well-known cousin CBD, it is legal to purchase it online in the US.
In it’s widely quoted research, Steep Hill reported, “The consumption of 2.5mg to 5mg of CBN has the same level of sedation as a mild pharmaceutical sedative, with a relaxed body sensation similar to 5mg to 10mg of diazepam (Valium).”