At stressful times in our lives, sleep often evades us. Moving is considered one of life’s greatest stressors, so it is no surprise that sleeping in a new bed has left you feeling unrested. With a spinning head and exhausted body, you just haven’t been able to wind down at night. There is hope for a sound sleep in your new home with a few minor adjustments to your routine.
Regulate your body’s clock by going to sleep and waking up the same time each night, even on weekends. When you stick to a schedule, you will train your body to rest at certain times. Aiming for at least eight hours is best.
Try to begin a relaxing bedtime ritual. This could be a warm bath, cup of herbal tea, or gentle yoga stretching. Avoid watching disturbing shows or reading books that will cause anxiety or stress. Let your mind wind down and your body will follow.
Napping can seriously throw off your sleep schedule, so avoid napping if possible. A 3:00 P.M. power nap might seem enticing at the moment, but chances are you will be left staring at the ceiling at bedtime. Especially when your sleep schedule is off, deny yourself the nap.
Exercising daily has many wonderful benefits. When it comes to getting sound sleep, make exercise a priority. Aerobic exercise at a high intensity will help reduce stress and calm the mind. Try to exercise several hours before bedtime or in the mornings.
Make sure your sleep environment has comfortable conditions for rest. Set the temperature to a degree that is not too hot or cold. Somewhere between 60 and 68 degrees is normal for most people. Evaluate your room for any noise or light that might disturb your sleep. Consider using a white noise machine, fan, earplugs, humidifier, eye mask and other devices to minimize interruptions.
Avoid alcohol and meals before bed. Although some people enjoy a glass of wine to help them relax, too much alcohol before bedtime can disrupt sleep. Overindulging in alcohol can have the reverse effect and keep you up all night. Eating too close to bedtime is also not recommended. A heavy meal can sit in your stomach, leaving you feeling bloated and uncomfortable. Give yourself time to digest at least two hours prior to bedtime. If you get hungry before bed, have a small snack.
Ditch your devices. Many people spend the hour before bed scrolling through social media or playing games on electronics. These behaviors don’t give your mind a chance to wind down before sleep. Electronics signal your brain to stay active, which is not what you want to do if you are looking to go to bed.
If you are struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep, get up and do something else until you feel tired again. Tossing and turning in your bed will only add to the anxiety of feeling sleep-deprived. As the days pass and your body and mind adjust to being in a new home, sleep will come. If you continue to have difficulty, consult with your doctor about other solutions.