Many people feel plagued by poor sleep quality, and figuring out what to do about it isn’t always easy. Experts suggest that most people require seven to nine hours of sleep each night, but many people fall short. However, there are methods for combatting sleep problems. Here is some scientific advice that can help with nine common issues.
As reported by Business Insider, certain ailments that affect the quality of your sleep can be alleviated by adjusting your sleep position.
Those who experience shoulder pain, first and foremost, should avoid sleeping on their side, especially with the painful shoulder down. Hugging a pillow can also be beneficial when sleeping on your back.
Back pain suffers may also find relief by changing how they sleep. If you sleep on your stomach, try placing a pillow under your thighs. Those who sleep on their back should try a pillow under their knees.
If neck pain is your bane, it may be time to replace your pillows. In most cases, pillows should be replaced at least every two years. Choosing a firm, latex version may also improve comfort.
For those who have trouble falling asleep, there are a few tips you could try. For example, make sure to avoid electronics, like smartphones, for at least an hour before bedtime. This is because the blue light from the screen can cause issues with REM cycles.
Staying away from caffeine for several hours before bed can also help, as well as exercising in the morning or afternoon.
If falling asleep isn’t a problem, but staying asleep is, make sure you forgo alcohol before bed as it has the potential to decrease the amount of time spent in deep REM sleep. Additionally, ensuring the room is at a comfortable temperature, typically between 68 and 71 degrees F can help.
Sometimes, waking up is more of a problem than staying asleep. When this occurs, set an alarm, so you rise at the same time every day, regardless of whether you have to be up at that specific time. This helps your body get used to waking up at a particular time of day, making it easier to achieve a state of alertness.
Acid reflux can also harm the quality of one’s sleep. If you are one of the 7 million people with the condition, try sleeping on your left side and use an elevated pillow.
Individuals who snore can also benefit from side sleeping and using an elevated pillow, or multiples, to achieve a few extra inches of height. Avoiding alcohol and using a saline sinus rinse before bed may also help.
If nighttime leg cramps wake you up, stretching and massage can relieve the pain. Applying heat may also be beneficial.