Issues with sleep are all too common for a lot of people and can be an underlying driver to many health complaints. Some nutrients and herbs can be just what the naturopath ordered however it is vital to make some lifestyle changes commonly termed ‘sleep hygiene’ to aid healthy sleep.⠀

?Unplug: avoid all blue light emitters such as tv, smartphones, ipads, PCs etc in the evening. The blue light can disrupt your circadian rhythm.⠀

?Regularity: maintaining a regular bedtime that allows you 7-9hrs (up to 13 for children -this is age dependant) will also support your circadian rhythm. Try setting a bedtime reminder alarm.⠀

?Evening Ritual: Create a routine to train your body & mind to wind down for bed. A shower, herbal tea, read a book or meditate. ⠀

?A cool room: Our bodies and particularly minds need to cool down over night to recuperate and to aid sleep, a cooler room can assist this.⠀

?Avoid stimulants: Caffeine, nicotine, sugar, chocolate, food and exercise before bed and hinder a deep sleep.⠀

?Naps: Take care with your day naps as these may affect your ability to sleep at night. Unless totally necessary, limit these to just 20 – 30 minutes.⠀

?Journaling: Journaling before bed can help to get some of those snowballing thoughts and to-do lists from your mind so as you can fall to sleep with more ease. Adding in your gratitude list may also be helpful. ⠀

Natalee Durrant – Naturopath and Medical Herbalist