Even if you are not stressed, getting to nod off can be quite a struggle. And the lack of sleep can lead to a bevy of health problems. But the one that’s of prime concern in the current situation is that our immunity is directly linked to sleep. Several researchers and sleep scientists have found that sleep and immunity share a close relationship. Or as they call it – a bidirectional relationship. Both of them not only influence each other but sleep can (at least) help your immune system function better than it used to. Provided you get your mandated 8 hours of solidly sound sleep every night. To help you sleep better, we asked Karishma Bhatia, Head of Product, SleepyCat, India’s first mattress-in-a-box company and a premium sleep solutions brand to share tricks and tips that will help you clock in more shuteye. Given below are a few science-backed tips that will improve your sleep pattern instantly.
If you struggle with sleep, a mattress change can help
A memory foam mattress has many benefits including improving the quality of your sleep. Invest in a good mattress. Often back pain can keep you up, disrupting your sleep. Is memory foam good for your back? “Of course, it is. It’ll help you sleep better. Memory foam mattresses can fix sleep problems and offer viable solutions in terms of proper comfort and support,” says Karishma.
Invest in a body pillow
A body pillow is a full-length pillow that’s used to support your body as you sleep. It’s a great thing to have around for side sleepers. “Side sleeping is a position in which your spine doesn’t get the right support. A body pillow can ensure neutral spinal alignment while offering you support. Body pillows can be greatly instrumental in keeping anxiety at bay as they provide you with a hug, soothing and calming your nerves,” adds Karishma.
Get a weighted blanket
Though still uncommon in India, weighted blanket use deep touch pressure technique that have a calming effect. Imagine being snuggled up in a warm, cozy bear hug all night long. That’s exactly what a weighted blanket feels like. Research suggests that sleeping with a weighted blanket not only ensures you fall asleep faster, but also stay asleep longer. What’s more, you experience fewer disruptions in the night, leading to an overall improved sleep experience.
Keep your sheets clean
Most times you end up with disturbed sleep due to allergies, itching, etc. Keep your sheets clean at all times.Your bed can turn into an active bacteria zone due to the accumulation of sweat, debris, pollen and more, causing allergies. So cleaning your sheets once a week is mandatory. Try mattress protectors, waterproof ones, to add an extra layer of protection. Fluff your pillows, toss on clean sheets and a good night’s sleep is yours!
Essential oils to the rescue
Certain fragrances can promote sleep and hence the popularity of essential oils. Lavender has calming and soothing properties that help you relax. Even Chamomile, Neroli, Cedarwood, Khus can induce sleep. Sleep experts recommend switching on an essential oil diffuser half an hour before you go to sleep. This will create a perfect setting to make your eyelids heavier.
Stimulate the pressure points
Ancient Chinese medicine tenets suggest that there are three pressure points on the wrist, which are positioned triangularly, called the golden triangle. Once stimulated, these pressure points increase blood flow and circulation. This, in turn, prompts the production of melatonin, the sleep hormone and one can fall asleep faster.
Deep breathing can help
They don’t say “take a deep breath” for nothing! Relaxed breathing patterns lowers the heart rate and nervous systems, whereas shallow and quick breaths can create anxiety. The 4-7-8 breathing method can put you to sleep in just 60 seconds. Yes, just 60 seconds! “Try these 3 steps: First, close your dropped jaw and inhale through your nose to a count of four. Secondly, hold your breath for seven counts. Thirdly, exhale slowly making a whooshing sound through your mouth to a count of eight,” suggests Karishma.