Sleep is essential and can make the difference between feeling energized and motivated or tired and unable to concentrate. Unfortunately, many people find it difficult to get a good night’s sleep for various reasons. Here, we’ll discuss some of the most common causes of trouble sleeping and solutions you can consider to help you get the restful sleep your body needs, including the benefits of a good quality mattress, getting active, and the right sleep support supplements. 1) Stress Overload It’s no secret that stress can majorly impact your ability to fall asleep quickly and stay asleep throughout the night. Your body releases cortisol when stressed out, which tells your brain it’s time to be alert. Unfortunately, this makes it very hard for you to relax and drift into dreamland. If you’re dealing with overwhelming stress regularly, it might be time to take a step back and address the underlying issues causing you anxiety. Taking time for yourself to manage stress is one way of helping your body unwind at night. 2) Sedentary Lifestyle Spending most of your day sitting around in an office chair or lying on the couch could also contribute to your difficulty sleeping at night. A sedentary lifestyle means your body isn’t getting enough exercise throughout the day, leading to restlessness when it comes to bedtime. To combat this issue, try going for a walk or doing some light stretching before bed, as this will help tire out your muscles so that you can fall asleep faster. Additionally, ensuring you get up and move during the day will help keep your energy levels balanced by evening so that you don’t feel like sleeping is a struggle each night. Experts recommend we aim to get at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity each day. 3) Too Much Sugar When trying to improve sleep quality, don’t forget about what you eat. Eating sugary snacks before bedtime can cause an increase in blood sugar levels which leads to more energy instead of less — precisely what you don’t want when trying to catch some much-needed Zzzs. Instead, try substituting sweet treats for healthier snacks with complex carbohydrates like sweet potatoes or oatmeal. These will help regulate your blood sugar levels throughout the day so that they aren’t spiking unexpectedly by nighttime. These foods also contain higher amounts of nutrients which can contribute positively towards better health and improved restful sleep cycles each night. 4) Hormones Are Out of Whack Women, in particular, can find that their hormones significantly affect how well they sleep. If your hormone levels are off balance due to things like pregnancy, menopause, or perimenopause, then this could be causing difficulty in falling asleep and staying asleep throughout the night. In these cases, ensuring you take time to get your health back on track and practice good sleep hygiene is important. An excellent place to start is speaking with your doctor about hormone imbalance testing, which can help you determine the proper steps for restoring your hormonal balance. 5) The Wrong Mattress A good quality mattress matters more than most people think. If yours doesn’t provide enough support or holds too much heat, it could also contribute to your sleep woes. Make sure to get a mattress designed for comfort and support so your body can relax throughout the night, leading to deeper and more restful sleep. The three main mattress types — innerspring, memory foam, and latex — all have unique benefits, so do your research and find one that’s designed for you. 6) Lack of Sleep Support Supplements Including specific herbs in your daily routine can help calm the mind and body, which could lead to better sleep quality. For example, magnesium, valerian root, skullcap, chamomile, and ashwagandha are great supplements that aid relaxation and encourage deep sleep cycles without causing any grogginess or drowsiness in the morning. Additionally, melatonin is a hormone found naturally in the body which helps regulate our sleep-wake cycles. Taking a supplement containing this natural ingredient may be helpful if you’re having difficulty winding down before bedtime each night. 7) Caffeine Late in the Day Did you know that the half-life of caffeine is about five hours? That means if you have a coffee at 5 o’clock, half of the caffeine will still be in your system at 10 o’clock. Caffeine is a stimulant, so having it late in the day can make it harder to relax and get quality sleep. To prevent this issue, try switching to decaf or herbal teas after 4 p.m. or reducing the amount of coffee you drink throughout the day. 8) Allergies Allergies adjust our breathing, making it harder to take deeper breaths during sleep. If allergies are an issue, then take extra steps to limit exposure and reduce symptoms before bedtime. For example, use air filters, keep pets out of bedrooms, dust regularly, and invest in hypoallergenic pillows/blankets if necessary. By reducing or eliminating your allergies, you can take deeper breaths and enjoy more restful sleep during the night. 9) Your Bedroom Isn’t Dark Enough Lastly, if your bedroom isn’t dark enough, it can make it harder for you to get quality sleep. Excess light exposure prevents the production of melatonin — a hormone responsible for controlling our sleep-wake cycle — and also messes with our internal body clock, making it harder to fall asleep each night. To combat this problem, invest in blackout curtains or an eye mask and ensure any electronics that generate light are turned off before bedtime. Final Sleepy Time Thoughts By taking the time to correct these issues, you’ll be able to enjoy better quality sleep every night and wake up feeling energized and refreshed! So why wait? Start taking the steps today towards healthier sleep habits and finally get the good nights of rest you deserve!