If there is one thing that a lot of parents struggle with on almost a daily basis, it’s a lack of sleep. While there’s no denying that parents of newborns and small babies are up during all hours of the night, truth be told, parents of older children don’t get much sleep, either. That’s because you are either too physically exhausted to fall asleep, you have quite a few things that are running in your mind, or there are other concerns that keep you tossing and turning all night long.
If that weren’t enough, many parents also find themselves using the end of the day to sit in bed and scroll through their phones or laptops to correspond with their friends, family members, co-workers, or just to simply keep up with the news, blogs, and social media. And as a result, they have a hard time falling asleep or maintaining a normal sleep pattern. Luckily, there are several different ways that you can cure insomnia. With a little self-care, discipline, and determination, you’ll be back to sleeping eight hours a night in no time.
1. Keep Your Room Dark
First and foremost, make sure that your room is quiet, dark, and cool. If you have streams of light peeking in from the hallway to your bedroom, it might make it more difficult for you to fall asleep at night. And if your room is not at the right temperature, or if you feel warm, you’ll find yourself tossing and turning your pillows and bed sheets more than you should.
2. Turn Off All Your Screens
For a lot of mothers, this might be difficult, but the last thing you want to do right before going to bed is watch television or play on your phone or laptop. There’s a big reason why our bodies refuse to shut off, even after we’ve shut off our electronic devices. According to WebMD, the small amounts of light from these devices pass through the retina into a part of the brain that controls several sleep activities and delay the release of the sleep-inducing hormone, melatonin.
3. Stick To A Regular Sleep Schedule
For many stay-at-home or working moms, sticking to a normal sleep schedule seems almost impossible. But if you want to feel well rested the next day, you have no choice but to go to bed at the same time every night and wake up during the same time every evening. While sleep requirements vary slightly from person to person, most healthy adults need between 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night to function at their best.
4. Avoid Stress Before Bedtime
Many of us have dealt with this before: we stay up all night, worrying about trivial, everyday things like our bills, our family’s financial situation, or whether or not you remembered to wash your child’s dirty baseball uniform. Unfortunately, stress keeps us up late at night. If you want to get a good night’s sleep, try mediation or some form of relaxation about one or two hours prior to your bedtime. Try a relaxing bath, read a book, or simply spend some time cuddling with your children.
Sometimes a good massage, a day at the spa, or even a little alone time can go a long way, especially when it comes to self-care. If you find that you are having trouble sleeping at night, take care of yourself and both your physical and emotional health. Go for a mid-day walk, start a membership at the gym, or treat yourself to something special once a month. The happier and well content you feel, the more of a chance that you will sleep better at night.
6. Avoid Mid-Day Naps
While a normal midday nap that lasts anywhere from 15 to 90 minutes is good for you and your health, it’s doing you no good if you are having a hard time falling asleep. Sure, naps can help brain functions that focus on memory and creativity, but if it’s also the reason why you are staying up all night, skip it.
7. Hide Your Clock
For a lot of people who suffer from insomnia, one of the worst things they can do is keep a clock inside their bedrooms. Well, it turns out that staring at your clock or checking to see what time it is in the middle of the night is no good for you. That’s because you’ll only feel frustrated that it’s 2 in the morning and that you haven’t gotten a wink of sleep. It’ll make you feel even more anxious, which will be harder for you to fall asleep.
Also: See A Specialist
If you tried all of the above and still find yourself up at night, try seeing an insomnia specialist or a therapist. Although, you might want to research which kind of physician or specialist you see first. A pulmonologist treats lung disease and breathing problems associated with sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea. A neurologist treats brain and nervous system disorders that may contribute to sleep problems.