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How to Improve Your Sleep Quality As You Age

Sleeping with an old style analog alarm clock

As we age, our sleep patterns can change, leading to difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep throughout the night. This can have a negative impact on our physical and mental health, making it all the more important to take steps to improve our sleep quality. In this article, we’ll explore some tips to get better sleep and wake up feeling rested and refreshed.

Stick to a Consistent Sleep Schedule

One of the best things you can do to improve your sleep quality is to establish a consistent sleep schedule. This means going to bed and waking up at the same time every day, even on weekends. By doing this, you can help regulate your body’s internal clock, making it easier to fall asleep and stay asleep throughout the night.

Create a Relaxing Bedtime Routine

Creating a relaxing bedtime routine can help signal to your body that it’s time to wind down and prepare for sleep. This might include taking a warm bath, reading a book, or listening to calming music. Avoid stimulating activities, such as using electronic devices or watching TV, as these can make it harder to fall asleep.

Make Your Sleep Environment Comfortable

Your sleep environment can play a big role in your ability to get a good night’s rest. Make sure your bedroom is cool, dark, and quiet. Consider investing in a comfortable mattress and pillows that support your preferred sleeping position. If noise or light is an issue, try using earplugs or an eye mask to block out distractions.

Limit Stimulants

Stimulants such as caffeine and nicotine can interfere with sleep quality, so it’s best to limit these as much as possible, especially in the hours leading up to bedtime. If you’re a coffee drinker, try switching to decaf in the afternoon. And if you’re a smoker, consider quitting or at least avoiding smoking before bed.

Get Regular Exercise

Regular exercise can help improve sleep quality by reducing stress and anxiety, boosting mood, and promoting physical exhaustion. However, it’s important to avoid vigorous exercise too close to bedtime, as this can make it harder to fall asleep. Aim to finish any exercise at least a few hours before bedtime.

Consider Relaxation Techniques

Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or progressive muscle relaxation can be helpful for reducing stress and promoting relaxation before bedtime. There are many resources available online or in books to help guide you through these techniques.

Seek Professional Help

If you’re having persistent sleep issues, it may be helpful to seek professional help from a sleep specialist or your healthcare provider. They can help identify any underlying issues that may be contributing to your sleep problems and recommend appropriate treatment options.

Improving your sleep quality, especially as you age, is essential for maintaining your physical and mental health. By sticking to a consistent sleep schedule, creating a relaxing bedtime routine, making your sleep environment comfortable, limiting stimulants, getting regular exercise, considering relaxation techniques, and seeking professional help if needed, you can take steps towards better sleep and wake up feeling refreshed and energized.

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