How to Get Better Sleep

In the quest for trying to develop habits that can lead to a healthier lifestyle, one of the best ways to achieve optimal health is to get more sleep. Sleep is essential and affects almost every tissue in our bodies. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommends adults get an average of 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night. This number might seem daunting if you are someone who suffers from stress or general tiredness. Fortunately there are a few tips to help you sleep better and wake up feeling more rested.

10 Tips for Better Sleep

  1. Establish your sleep routine: Try to maintain the same sleep-wake schedule, even on weekends. If you aren’t sure where to start, think about what time you want to – or need to - wake up each morning. This may be dictated by your job, family obligations or your personal goals. Ignore influencer lists that say you should start your day at a certain time. Your wake time should be reasonable for your lifestyle and not so daunting that you’ll miss your alarm or cause you to hit the snooze button. Once you identify your ideal wake time, count backwards about 7-8 hours. That should be your target bedtime most nights.
  2. Set up your sleep sanctuary: Your bedroom should be conducive to helping you get a good night’s sleep. Make sure it’s dark and cool and you are able to drown out outside distractions. If you are able to, invest in blackout or room-darkening window coverings that will minimize outside light. Turn down the thermostat, or, if you have an older home with no central air, invest in a window unit. According to the National Sleep Foundation, a bedroom temperature between 60-67 degrees Fahrenheit helps promote better sleep. Air conditioning units and fans are also great white noise machines. Or, you can buy a specific sound machines that with different settings that emit soothing noise like nature or ocean waves.
  3. Limit technology in the bedroom: Devices like sound machines, fans, cooling pads and air units that create white noise or help promote better sleep are fine to keep in the bedroom, because as mentioned in Tip #2, they can help set you up for sleep success. Alarm clocks are also essential for ensuring you wake up on time. TVs and computer screens that emit light should be taken out of the bedroom, or at the very least unplugged and powered off. Resist the urge to pick up your cell phone as you go to bed. Phones should be turned to airplane mode and only used as alarms if you don’t have a standard alarm clock.
  4. Limit technology use before bed: This can be a harder task for some, but in addition to keeping technology out of the bedroom, try to limit technology use before you get into bed. Try putting away your phone, tablet or laptop 1-2 hours before you go to bed and see how that helps you get better sleep. If you do decide to use any devices, be mindful of what you are consuming. Doom-scrolling could lead to anxiety and inhibit your ability to feel soothed and relaxed when you do go to bed. Instead, opt for activities like listening to relaxing music, doing a guided meditation, or reading a book.
  5. Don’t “live in your bedroom”: Your bedroom should be reserved for sleep and intimacy. Ideally, it should not be used as your office, gym or the family hang-out spot. Of course, if you live in a small space or studio apartment, you can’t avoid doing other activities in the same place you rest your head. In those instances, avoid jumping out of bed and right into work or a major task and vice versa. Try to give yourself some time in between sleeping and productivity.
  6. Incorporate calming activities before bed: Creating a relaxation routine can help support better sleep. Calming activities can include drinking non-caffeinated herbal teas, taking a warm bath or shower, doing a light meditation or exercise like yoga and stretching, journaling, or reading a book.
  7. Limit or avoid stimulating substances: According to the Cleveland Clinic, caffeine is “notorious for keeping you awake.” Try to limit caffeine intake throughout the day and avoid it at least 7 hours before you plan to go to bed. Alcohol should also be limited before bed because its overall impact can harm sleep. Nicotine makes it harder to sleep, and should be avoided all together.
  8. Avoid large meals before bed: A light snack or uncaffeinated beverage is okay, but try not to eat heavy meals 2-3 hours before bed. Additionally, what you eat might impact your sleep quality so try to maintain a healthy diet with more plant-based foods, fiber and unsaturated fats.
  9. Maintain a regular exercise regimen: According to Harvard Health, regular aerobic exercise provides 3 important benefits for better sleep: you might fall asleep faster, experience a higher percentage of restorative deep sleep, and awaken less often throughout the night. There are a lot of opinions on when the optimal time is to exercise, but if your goal is to sleep better, it’s best to try to limit it to no later than 2 hours before bed. Physical activity outside of light stretching and yoga is a stressor on the body, and stress can impact sleep.
  10. Don’t panic if you don’t fall asleep right away: If you are still awake after laying in bed for about 20 minutes, get up and return to some of the calming activities from tip #6. Continuing to lay in bed may lead to you feeling restless and frustrated. Getting better sleep is not going to – literally – happen over night. Improving your sleep will take time and patience. Be graceful with yourself and celebrate the small wins and embrace the habits that work rather than focusing on being perfect.

If you’ve tried all these methods for an extended period of time and you are still having trouble sleeping, talk with your doctor to see if you have any underlying conditions that are inhibiting your sleep patterns. There may be reasons out of your control for why you are not able to get better sleep, and your doctor can help you figure out if there is anything going on you may not realize, or give you additional tools to help with sleep support.

Are Melatonin supplements safe for sleep?

Many people take melatonin supplements to help with sleep support. Melatonin occurs naturally in your body and plays a major role in regulating the sleep-wake cycle. Melatonin supplments may be a good option for people who need sleep support. vitafusion™ offers three melatonin gummy vitamins each with varying dosages that can help with sleep support and jet lag*:

  • vitafusion™ Melatonin is a sugar-free sleep support gummy supplement with 3 mg of melatonin per serving specifically formulated for adults*. vitafusion™ Melatonin provides sleep support so you can awake refreshed. It also can help with jet lag*.
  • vitafusion™ Extra Strength Melatonin is a sleep support gummy supplement with 5 mg of melatonin per serving specifically formulated for adults*. vitafusion™ Extra Strength Melatonin provides sleep support so you can wake up refreshed and rested. It also can help with jet lag*.
  • vitafusion™ Max Strength Melatonin is a tasty sleep support gummy supplement with 10 mg of melatonin per serving specifically formulated for adults*. Each two-gummy serving supports sleep, helps with jet lag recovery and helps regulate your sleep cycle*.

All vitafusion™ melatonin gummy vitamins can be ordered online. Shop each product below:

  1. vitafusion™ Melatonin
  2. vitafusion™ Extra Strength Melatonin
  3. vitafusion™ Max Strength Melatonin

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.