Do you toss and turn at night, struggling to fall asleep? Are you constantly struggling to adhere to an evening routine that promotes sleep? When you have a difficult time falling asleep at night, you are losing quality sleep, and this can eventually have negative effects on your overall mental health. As counselors that offer mental health therapy in Winter Park, we know the negative effects of poor quality sleep on your overall wellbeing. You may not know that there are certain habits that you should avoid doing in the evening. These are a few evening habits that are causing you to lose sleep.
Many people may think that their coffee with dinner is harmless, but this can actually be keeping you up much later than your bedtime. Coffee is a stimulant with caffeine, which is often why many people crave it first thing in the morning. However, when you drink a cup of it too late in the day, you can mess up your circadian rhythm and cause issues with your sleep. Even if you do fall asleep after drinking coffee, you sleep is likely not as deep or restorative.
Many people scroll mindlessly through their phones in the minutes leading up to sleep. In fact, some people even use their phones to help them induce sleep. This is a habit that is actually counterproductive, as your screen is likely keeping you awake even longer. Not only will this process overstimulate your brain, but it can also keep your eyes wide awake on the glowing screen. You should avoid using your phone for the hour leading up to your bedtime.
You may struggle to get a time to workout during the day, but this does not mean that you should try to squeeze in a quick workout right before you lay down at night. When you engage in a highly active workout at night, you may stimulate your brain, release energy, and make it difficult to fall asleep. An active workout will raise your body temperature, which will also make it tougher for you to reach a restful and relaxed mindset to encourage sleep.
While you may have enjoyed a night out with your friends, you should say no to the nightcap. Alcohol has sedative effects that make you drowsy, which may seem like it can actually help you sleep. However, drinking alcohol late at night causes fragmented sleep the disrupt your normal sleep patterns, which takes away from the quality of sleep you get. This may mean you will be wide away at two AM instead of sleeping soundly through the night.
By changing your evening routine, you can avoid these certain habits that will degrade your quality of sleep and cause negative health effects. As a counselor in mental health therapy in Winter Park, we offer solutions to promote healthy habits and better your lifestyle. Contact us if you are ready to start thriving with quality sleep today.
Heather Oller is a licensed Orlando therapist at Orlando Thrive Therapy, Coaching & Counseling who specializes in counseling Orlando couples, individuals, and families who are seeking changes in their lives. She has been a mental health professional for over 17 years and is a practicing Orlando counselor that specializes in conflict resolution for couples. You can contact her for an appointment or call 407-592-8997 for more information.