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Adlen Robinson: How to get a better night’s sleep
Adlen Robinson

Do you sleep well at night? So many people I meet tell me they don’t. Instead of taking a pill to help you sleep —those can make you so sluggish the next day — why not try these tips and suggestions. I want all of my readers to be well rested and feel great in the morning.

Invest in some top-quality sheets. I did this a few years ago, and let me tell you it really made a difference with how we slept. Organic cotton may sound like a gimmick, but it is incredibly soft and breathable.

Get a good mattress — especially if your current mattress is on the old side. Do some research and of course, try out the mattress to see if it is comfortable. If a new mattress isn’t in your budget, purchase a good, thick mattress cover and pad. The good ones are not cheap, but are much less expensive than a new mattress.

 Keep your bedroom on the cool side. Not cold, but not hot either. Sleep experts say you sleep better in a cooler room — set the temperature at 65 degrees or a little cooler.

 Leave your computer, cell phone and tablet in another room. Nothing wakes your brain up more than when you roll over in the middle of the night and start reading your email or text messages. Just leave them in the kitchen and check them in the morning.

Limit caffeine during the day and don’t have any after 1 or 2 p.m. 

Go to sleep and wake up at the same time every day — even on the weekends. Especially if you struggle with sleep, this is critical. Your body gets used to these times.

Sip on herb tea at night. Chamomile tea is said to relax you naturally.

Don’t eat late at night. Sleep experts say to not eat at least three hours before you plan on going to sleep.

Make sure your bedroom is completely dark. The darker your room is, the sounder you will sleep. Use heavy curtains or good blinds to darken your windows.

If you struggle with insomnia, turn off the television several hours before you plan on going to sleep. Instead of watching a movie, try reading a book. 

Breathe slowly and think about a relaxing scene — don’t think about work or things that are stressful. Try thinking about the beach or a waterfall.

Turn on white noise. Our children always say that when they walk by our bedroom at night it sounds like a small airplane is taking off. We have a fairly loud air cleaner that runs as well as “crickets” on one of my devices. Many people like to sleep in complete silence, but we much prefer white noise. There are lots of white noise apps you can download. I also like the sound of rain and waves.

If you do wake up in the middle of the night, don’t turn on the television or do anything too active. Try reading a book and keep the lights dim so your brain doesn’t think it is time to get up and get going.

Establish a nightly bedtime routine and stick to it. Take a warm bath or shower, listen to soft music, read a book while sipping on warm tea, etc.

Exercise in the morning or afternoon, not at night. If possible, take a brisk walk during your lunch hour, or get up 30 minutes earlier in the morning and get a quick workout in. Consistent exercise goes a long way for your health as well as assisting you to fall and stay asleep.

Getting enough sleep and sleep that is uninterrupted and restful is so important for your overall health. We all know we are not nearly as productive when we are sleep deprived. If you struggle with getting a good night’s sleep, try these tips and let me know if they help. Goodnight all!

South Forsyth resident Adlen Robinson is author of “Home Matters: The Guide to Organizing Your Life and Home.” E-mail her at