Sleep is critical for mind and body health. Without it, the effects can be severe. But what if you suffer from insomnia? Below, neuroscientist Claudia Aguirre provides 7 healthy tips for a better night’s sleep:
1. Aim for power hours. Sleep the recommended amount for a restorative night. That is: between 9 and 12 hours for school-aged children, 8 to 10 hours for teenagers, and 7 to 9 hours for adults.
2. Ban the blue. Filter the blue light of your electronic device and sleep better. Studies show that blue light from electronic devices can delay sleep onset and affect overall circadian rhythm.
3. Spoon. Sleeping on the side may help the brain clear waste more efficiently than sleeping on the back or belly.
4. Breathe deep. Deep breathing triggers the body’s relaxation response. What’s more, inhaling can drive cerebrospinal fluid flow to help clear brain waste and oxygenate the brain.
5. Don’t overdo it. Science is still working this one out, but there are some cases where too much sleep can pose a health risk. Better set that alarm.
6. Exercise. Lab experiments show that regular exercise can protect the brain from sleep deprivation-induced memory deficits.
7. Keep cool. You just might get a better night’s rest if you sleep in a cool room (or stick your feet out).