Healthy sleep is crucial in early sobriety. The best thing we can do for ourselves is develop a routine around our sleep cycles, making it easier for us to reap the benefits of our time asleep. Here are four tips to get a better night’s sleep and wake up rested and ready to take on the day:
Avoid Caffeine and Nicotine
It seems like a no-brainer, but many people in early recovery use caffeine and nicotine often as a way to counteract their lower energy levels. Aside from the obvious dangers of these chemicals, they strongly interfere with our ability to fall asleep at an appropriate time.
Make Your Bedroom into a Relaxing Space
Light, noise, and even temperature can keep us from falling asleep or staying asleep through the night. Try moving anything distracting that emits light or noise into another room. Scientists have found that a cool temperature, between 60 and 75 degrees, help us achieve adequate sleep. There are many options to try—white noise, blackout curtains, or a sleep mask can all help signal to your brain that it’s time to fall asleep.
Go to Sleep and Wake Up at the Same Time Every Day
Our bodies have a 24-hour internal clock that determines our sleeping and waking patterns. This pattern of is known as the “circadian rhythm.” According to the National Sleep Foundation, “Your circadian rhythm works best when you have regular sleep habits, like going to bed at night and waking up in the morning around the same times from day to day (including weekends). When things get in the way, like jet lag, daylight savings time, or a compelling sporting event on TV that keeps you up into the wee hours of the morning, you can disrupt your circadian rhythm, which makes you feel out of sorts and can make it harder to pay attention.” If we can go to sleep and wake up at the same time each day, we are not creating a conflict with the natural sleep pattern of our body, and will not feel drowsy or sluggish during our waking hours.
Try Mediation or Relaxing Activities Before Bed
Activities like yoga and mediation help lower blood pressure, slow our breathing, and reduce the stress of the day. The type of deep, diaphragmatic breathing from mediation signals to your brain that your body is relaxed, helping you reach a state of calmness necessary to deep, relaxing sleep. Harvard Medical School makes a few recommendations for relaxing bedtime activities: “Take a bath (the rise, then fall in body temperature promotes drowsiness), read a book, watch television, or practice relaxation exercises. Avoid stressful, stimulating activities—doing work, discussing emotional issues. Physically and psychologically stressful activities can cause the body to secrete the stress hormone cortisol, which is associated with increasing alertness.
Recovery is all about healing the mind, body and spirit. You can choose to give up the chaos of addiction and achieve a brighter future. Oceanfront Recovery, a men’s treatment facility in Orange County, California, offers the chance to engage in a program of recover in a beautiful beachfront environment. For more information about treatment options, please call today: (877) 279-1777