Stay on track in the morning with a good night’s rest.
A good night’s sleep is very important for everyone, as it helps you feel refreshed, strengthens your immune system, and lowers your risk of heart disease. A good night’s sleep can also keep you alert and on track and focused during the day. But how do you create the perfect bedtime routine to ensure that you and your child get enough sleep every night?
A good sleep routine begins with a good nightly routine.
We all know that going to bed at the same time every night is a good habit to have for a good sleep routine. Having good habits, like brushing your teeth at the same time every night, can help you and your body associate these actions with getting ready for sleep. You may even start to associate brushing your teeth at night with winding down for the day, which can help you in your sleep routine journey.
How much sleep do I need?
Many people report that they sleep better and feel more rested in the morning when they head to bed at the same time every night.
How do you determine when you should be heading to bed? First, you need to know how much sleep you need each night. How much sleep someone needs varies by not only age, but the person themselves. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it’s not uncommon for children under the age of five to sleep for 12 or more hours a day when naps are included. Adults, on the other hand, only need about seven hours of sleep per night.
Count back the hours.
Now that you know how many hours you or your children should be getting every night, it’s time to do a little math to figure out the perfect bedtime, and then the perfect time you should be winding down for the night.
For instance, if an adult needs to be up by 6 a.m., a recommended bedtime would be 11 p.m. If you are the type who doesn’t fall asleep right away, you might start your nighttime before-bed routine at 10 p.m. For school-aged children who need to be up at 6:30 a.m., a good bedtime for them would be around 8:30 p.m., so their bedtime routine of brushing their teeth and storytime could begin around 8 p.m.
Put the screens away.
Many adults, and even teens, are connected to their phones, and often lay in bed scrolling away. Many people don’t realize that the blue light that radiates from the screens isn’t good for your eyes or your health.
A study by Harvard Medical School states that the human body needs darkness to help it fall asleep, and by using screens at night, the light that illuminates from the screens can throw off the body’s circadian rhythm (your body’s internal clock). The study suggests that people avoid screens and bright lights two to three hours before bed. If you are one of those people who likes to read before bed, they suggest using a red-toned light for reading at night.
Get diagnosed for sleep apnea.
If you have made lifestyle changes and you still find yourself not able to get a good night’s sleep, it may be time to talk to your doctor about any health conditions that might contribute to your lack of sleep.
Sleep apnea is a condition that affects the way a person breathes at night. The condition can affect as many as 10% of men and 6% of women in the United States, and in serious cases, can lead to serious health issues. A person who has sleep apnea stops breathing multiple times at night, which affects airflow into the lungs.
If your doctor has determined that you have sleep apnea, Dr. Staley and his team have solutions for you. Many of the solutions offered at Dr. Staley’s practice use a device worn in the mouth at night that pushes the jaw out slightly, allowing for air to flow freely into and out of the lungs. These devices can also help with snoring.
Keep up the routines.
Routines don’t just apply to night time—they can apply to every part of your life. Don’t forget to keep up your dental hygiene routine by brushing at least twice a day for at least two minutes. And don’t forget to visit Dr. Staley and his team at least twice a year to help keep your smile healthy! If you’re due for your routine dental checkup or you want to discuss nighttime breathing issues, schedule an appointment today.