We all know a good night’s sleep is the best way to start your day! Most adults need between seven and nine hours each night to be at their most productive, and children and teens need even more.

Rest helps our brains function much better by improving our mental sharpness, emotional balance, immune system and even our weight.

It really is that important, but many of us neglect to catch enough zzz’s due to stress, a busy timetable, and our diet. Here are five easy ways to improve your sleep.

Avoid your phone an hour before bed

You've heard it before, but using your phone before bed really does ruin your sleep! Phone, laptop and tablet screens all emit blue light, which increases the body’s alertness, reduces the sleep favouring hormone melatonin and changes your body clock to make you believe it’s still day time.

By switching off your phone an hour before bed in favour of reading or chatting to family, you’ll help your body to wind down and get ready for a good night’s sleep.

Wear ear plugs

Living by the side of a busy road or sleeping next to someone who snores can wreck your sleep. So here’s the secret… ear plugs! Whether they're wax, foam or a pair of custom-moulded plugs, ear plugs are an affordable way to reduce noise effectively and rock you to sleep peacefully.

Wear a sleeping mask

It’s not only blue light that can affect the way you sleep. Daylight, especially during the summer months, can wake you up way too early or trick your body clock into thinking it isn’t quite time for bed yet. Wearing an eye mask like the ones found here is also great for shift or night workers, who aren’t necessarily sleeping when it’s dark. Sleeping masks block out all light and sit comfortably across your eyes throughout the night.

Don’t eat before bed

Cheese gives you nightmares! Well, this isn’t entirely true, but eating heavily before bed can give your sleeping pattern nightmares. Many foods people are likely to reach for before bed are sweet and full of sugar and even caffeine. These foods will increase the alertness of your brain and make it much more difficult to get to sleep.

Use a white noise machine

White noise machines can be amazing for masking environmental noise such as a snoring partner or traffic outside, allowing you to focus solely on sleeping. Dozing off in a white noise ‘cocoon’ creates a peaceful environment, leaving you feeling well-rested and rejuvenated in the morning. These machines aren’t just great for sleeping, white noise can help you to focus on studying or masking conversation to create an element of privacy.

Now, we’re hoping just reading this makes you ready for a nap… in a good way! Get those ear plugs, drink your water and leave your phone alone for an hour. You’re all set for a good snooze....

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