According to a survey conducted by , a vast majority - 63.1%, to be precise - of people are unhappy with the amount of sleep they get. I'm entirely unsurprised by this stat - in fact, I'm firmly in the 63.1%, complaining with regularity that I'm tired and that my day's tasks seem insurmountable as a result.
In my latest #MadsAboutBeauty video, I attempted to put poor sleep to bed, so to speak, focussing on my bedroom, my routine, and my diet to try to up the quality of my sleep. Guiding me was Dr Guy Meadows, co-founder of the and author of .
Watch the video to see him share some tips, and to see how I got on. And if you're after a few good sense rules that might just help you to sleep a bit better, give these a whirl...
1. Get into a routine with the time you go to bed. Keeping it regular helps set your body clock into a circadian rhythmn (your sleep-wake cycle).
2. Choose a realistic and sensible time to go to sleep so you don’t stay awake for ages and stress yourself out.
3. Don’t lie in late at the weekend or if you’ve had a late night. Though this sounds a bit mad, especially if you’ve got snooze to catch up on, it will disrupt your sleep pattern big time. Catch extra sleep with a nap or by going to bed a little bit earlier the next night. This will make you less tired without making your Monday to Friday mornings more difficult. (But avoid napping if you’re having big issues falling asleep.)
4. Factor in between seven to nine hours sleep each night. And to get the most of your beauty sleep, put on a
5. Don’t check your phone or emails before bed (for at least 30-40 minutes if possible) as the glow from the screens delays the release of melatonin, making it harder for you to get to sleep. If you have to, turn down the brightness and switch it to night mode.
6. Avoid caffeine. Your morning or early afternoon coffee is ok, but steer clear after lunch as it can affect sleep for 10-12 hours after.
7. Avoid that evening red wine (or any alcohol) as though it’ll make you snoozy, it will affect the quality of your sleep.
8. Exercise — as well as feeling better in the day, you’ll sleep better. Try and fit it in during the day as it can be stimulating in the evening.
9. Try to go out in the daylight as it helps your body to produce the hormone it needs to stay asleep.
10. Avoid anything too stimulating before bed as it can backfire and make it harder to sleep. Try music or audio books instead of anything too rousing like Game of Thrones.
11. Make sure the room is as dark as you need it to be. If you like your room dark, try an eye mask or blackout curtains and take anything that emits light out of your room.
12. Don’t drink too much of anything before bed as trips to the bathroom can interfere with sleep. If you do have to get up, keep the light down low and avoid looking at your phone.
13. Don’t eat too close to your bedtime and avoid anything too acidic, fatty or spicy. If you get peckish before bed, choose foods that are high in tryptophan, like nuts, eggs and cottage cheese.
14. If your issue is waking up in the night and not falling back to sleep, try and work out what’s keeping you awake – stress, worry? – and then deal with it in the day as much as possible.
15. Do some breathing exercises, gentle stretching or yoga before bed, though nothing that will raise your heart rate.
16.Try to get a proper wind down period by taking a bath (but not too hot as a change in body temperature can hinder sleep), or by reading a book or mag before bed.
17. If it’s noise that disturbs your sleep, and you can't do anything about it, try using earplugs or download an app that'll help to send you to sleep. has some brilliant bedtime stories on it.
18. Make sure your bed is comfortable.
19. Don’t be tempted to turn your heaters on full. Though it seems cosy, being too warm can hinder sleep.
20. If you work from home, don’t do it from your bed. Keep it solely for sleep and sex, not blogging and emails.
21. If you wake up in the night, stay as relaxed as possible and in a sleeping position and try to meditate, letting thoughts come and go without lingering on them.
22. If you keep waking up and staying awake for ages, try a non-stimulating activity in a different room — one that doesn't involve any screens.
23. Try and dim your lights in the evening, before you hit the hay.
24. Turn OFF your phone (yes, really) – the radiation, light and vibrations will be disturbing your sleep, and you’ll be more tempted to look at it in the night.
25. Buy an alarm clock. (See #24.)
26. Once you find a bed time ritual that works for you, stick to it.
27. If you're struggling to sleep because you're feeling stressed or too alert, try breathing deeply which allows more oxygen into the lungs and relaxes you. Breathe deeply through your nose and out through your mouth and it will make a difference. We promise (from experience!).