Can you barely make it through one hour of work before you’re using all your willpower not to spill your flat white while you violently yawn? You’re not alone. Four in 10 Australians go to work each day after having little sleep. And while feeling tired is probably putting your barista’s kids through college, it’s also having an impact on your life in other ways.
Sleep deprivation can contribute to health conditions like diabetes, depression, heart disease and stroke. Plus, according to Deloitte’s 2017 Sleep Health Foundation Report, inadequate sleep costs each of us $246 in health bills every year.
So how can you get more sleep, save your hard-earned cash and feel, well, less exhausted? The answer might surprise you. Without realising, your daily rituals are contributing to those dark circles under your eyes— and these are the surprising things making you tired, that have nothing to do with how many hours of sleep you’re getting a night.
Your daily screen time hit
It’s true, Instagram has magical powers when it comes to forcing your thumbs to keep scrolling when you could be getting shut-eye. But it’s your beloved device’s screen light that’s really contributing to you feeling tired. At night time our bodies naturally create melatonin which is a hormone that helps us drift off to sleep. The light coming from your screen suppresses this important hormone which, you guessed it, prevents you from getting to sleep easily. Give yourself a break from your devices at least half an hour before you head to bed. Don’t worry, Facebook will still be there in the morning.
Simply chill out
Another factor contributing to your perpetual tiredness? Your temperature. In order to fall asleep, your body’s core temperature needs to decrease which results in your melatonin increasing. But if your bedding is making you too hot, you can guarantee you won’t fall asleep as easily (hello tiredness, old friend).
Choose quality pyjamas and bed linen, that adjusts to your body’s temperature — the kind that keeps you feeling breezy in summer and snuggly in winter.
Sorry, but caffeine is a culprit
We know, we know, you don’t want to hear a bad word said about your soy cappuccino, but it’s true, caffeine can rob you of sleep and send your levels of exhaustion through the roof. Your daily cup (or four) stimulates the stress hormone cortisol in your body, which inhibits melatonin from working its sleepy magic. While it depends on the individual, aim to sip your last coffee six to eight hours before your head hits the pillow so you’re getting the best shot at a good night of sleep. Sure, you might miss your late afternoon mug, but there’s always hot chocolate to fill the void.
Food for sleep
What you choose to eat every day, and when you eat it, can have a big impact on how many jaw-stretching yawns you’re pulling throughout the day. Eating a healthy, balanced diet will give your body the fuel and energy to make it through the day. Be sure to eat your dinner two or three hours before lights out. Eating late at night can confuse your body into thinking it’s meant to be awake. Plus, is anyone actually capable of sleeping after they just devoured a massive bowl of fettuccine carbonara? Seriously.
While there’s nothing better than a solid nap on a Sunday afternoon, it could actually leave you more tired in the long run. The ideal nap time? The Sleep Health Foundation suggests sticking to a “power nap” of around 15 to 30 minutes. This amount of time will give you back your bounce and alertness. Any longer and you risk feeling groggier than you did pre-nap. Set your alarm for 30 minutes and try to resist the temptation to continually press snooze once it goes off.
As we all know, exercise is hugely beneficial for our overall health and mood, but consistent exercise over a prolonged period can also help you in the zzzs department, too. If you’re someone who’s prone to anxiety, exercise has also been shown to ease symptoms and improve your mood, which in turn, will lead to a better night’s sleep. So… hop (skip or jump) to it.
Make your bedroom a VIP area
If you want a good night’s sleep, you need to ensure that your bedroom is a sacred sanctuary. What do we mean by this? Dim the lights or opt for lamp light to indicate to your body that sleep time is approaching. While chocolate in bed while watching your latest Netflix obsession is tempting, minimise the activities you do in the bedroom to sleep and, well, we’ll let you guess the other one, so that you build a regular going-to-bed routine. Invest in comfortable, quality bed linen so that your bed is somewhere you can’t wait to be at the end of a long day and keep device use (remember how those bright screens mess with your body clock?) to a minimum.
Now that we’re on the topic, here are 10 simple ways to enhance the quality of your sleep – starting from tonight! – and these are the health benefits of sleeping in 100% Flax Linen.
Discover our range of luxurious and accessible 100% French flax linen bedding here.