Daily routines for a good night
Exercise, sunlight, nutrition - how we spend the day has a decisive influence on our nocturnal sleep patterns. health expert dr. medical Alfred Wiater explains what we can do during the day to fall asleep faster and get a good night's sleep.
Table of Contents
- The interaction of day & night
- Daily tips for a restful night
1. The interaction of day & night
Daylight, nutrition, activity level or state of health - all of these factors have an impact on our nocturnal sleep patterns. A restful night's sleep can therefore already be promoted during the day.
Dr. medical Alfred Wiater is smartsleep expert for sleep medicine and health. As a pediatrician and former chairman of the German Society for Sleep Research and Sleep Medicine (DGSM), he has many years of experience in the field of sleep and is also very familiar with sleep disorders. Dr. medical Wiater tells us what we can do during the day to prepare for a good night's sleep and reveals his top daily tips for a good night's sleep.
2. Daily tips for a restful night
The following recommendations show how you can structure your day to improve your sleep and falling asleep at night.
We can promote a restful night's sleep during the day, right after getting up. The natural morning light with a high proportion of blue light suppresses the release of our sleep hormone melatonin. As a result, the sleepiness of the night slowly decreases and we become more awake. At the same time, daylight promotes the release of serotonin and the cortisol level also rises in the morning. Both hormones make us fit for the day. Serotonin also has a positive effect on our mood and is converted by our body into melatonin in the evening as darkness increases. So that we can produce enough melatonin in the evening to get a good night's sleep, we should get enough daylight during the day. Already a 15-minute stay outdoors in the early morning, e.g. B on the way to work or school, helps to fall asleep better in the evening. But watch out: In the evening, on the other hand, bright light with a high proportion of blue light, e.g. B Screen light, the natural fatigue and should rather be avoided.
My recommendation: A short walk or walking to work in the morning gets your head and circulation going and then helps you fall asleep earlier in the evening.
The famous midday slump often tempts you to take a long nap. A power nap of a maximum of 30 minutes can be very relaxing during the day. Even a shorter nap, during which we are just about to fall asleep, is good for us and, according to current studies, even promotes our creativity. However, the time and duration of sleep are important. Because if we sleep late and too late at noon, we lack sleep pressure in the evening and falling asleep is delayed.
My recommendation: Take a short power nap around noon. This brings new energy without affecting your night's sleep.
Not only the light influences our sleep-wake cycle, but also our physical activities. Various studies have shown that physical activity in the afternoon has a positive effect on sleep patterns. This also applies not only to adults, but also to childhood. An exciting study in which I worked with Dr. Markus Dworak worked together showed that a workout in the afternoon reduced the time it took to fall asleep and increased the proportion of deep sleep. The right timing is also important here! Exercising in the evening or immediately before going to bed can, however, lead to problems falling asleep due to the associated metabolic activation.
My recommendation: A long walk or a training session can often be planned well in the afternoon. This also promotes health and has a positive effect on the process of falling asleep and the quality of sleep.
Late and too much food, caffeine and alcohol should be avoided in the evening. Although alcohol has a sleep-promoting effect, it quickly leads to problems sleeping through the night. And how do we fall asleep quickly in the evening? Relaxation is equally important for body and mind. However, it is becoming increasingly difficult for many people to relax properly in the evening because stress and worries also affect their sleep. Here I like to refer to the famous night reading, because reading a book before falling asleep can actually reduce stress by up to 68%. According to a study, reading for just 6 minutes is enough to relax. A tip that even stressed parents of children with sleeping problems can implement. There are of course many other ways to find peace and quiet in the evening, for example relaxation exercises or listening to music have proven to be effective.
My recommendation: Reading (or reading aloud) before going to bed is highly recommended at any age to relax and promote sleep.
Our behavior during the day has an influence on our sleep behavior in the evening and can have a positive or negative effect on falling asleep, sleep duration and sleep quality
In the morning, daylight and fresh air in particular help to get going and promote tiredness and falling asleep in the evening.
A short power nap at midday can give you new energy. It should last less than 30 minutes, otherwise the night's sleep will be disturbed.
The afternoon is a good time for physical activity. Sport then makes it easier to fall asleep later and has a positive effect on the quality of sleep.
It's time to relax in the evening. Reading is a proven evening activity that reduces stress and promotes a good night's sleep.
Greetings and see you next time!