This article was written by our guest blogger, Gabriel Patel of healthwellwise.com.
The importance of getting a good night’s rest is undeniable, which is why it’s alarming that 50 to 70 million Americans struggle to get adequate sleep. While some people fail to prioritize sleep in their lives, others are hampered by sleep disorders and other medical conditions. If you’re in the latter group, there may be some ways to improve your sleep without having to take prescription medications and deal with the side effects that come with them—and you might even find that technology can benefit your sleep habits. Here are some methods to try out:
Try These Methods For Better Sleep (Before You Try Prescription Meds)
Get A New Mattress
You may be surprised by just how much a bad mattress can impact your sleep. If your mattress is 7-10 years old and/or showing signs of wear, it might be time to look for a new one. Even if your mattress isn’t old but you wake up with neck and back pain or struggle to get comfortable, it may be worth considering researching other types of mattresses.
When you’re mattress shopping, you’ll quickly realize how many choices there are. Be sure to factor in your sleep style (back, side, stomach, or combo), as well as your preference in firmness level.
If you’re thinking that a firmer mattress will work best for you, look at the Amerisleep models, which can accommodate back and stomach sleepers. If you need a mattress that’s a little softer, check out the Zinus mattresses, which are affordable and great for those who overheat while sleeping.
Upgrade Your Smartphone
This one may sound strange at first. After all, aren’t phones supposed to be bad for your bedtime routine? The answer is yes and no. Staring at your phone while lying in bed can disrupt your sleep, but there are also tons of apps designed specifically to help people get better sleep. Here’s the catch: You need to make sure your phone can handle it when you’re running more apps. If you have an older device, think about upgrading to a newer version. If you trade in your old phone, you may be able to trade up for a newer model!
Download Sleep Apps
Now, let’s take a quick look at a few of the sleep apps on the market that can help to improve your sleep habits:
SnoreLab — This app gives you the low-down on your snoring patterns. All you have to do is press record and leave your phone at your bedside through the night. It will record and analyze your snoring and show you the trends.
Pillow Automatic Sleep Tracker — This app will track and analyze your sleep cycles via your iPhone or Apple Watch. Also, it has a smart alarm clock that will sound off during your lightest sleep stage, and it comes with various sleep aid sounds and advice for improving your sleep.
Sleep Genius — This app helps to guide your brain through an entire sleep cycle by using different sounds. It was designed for NASA astronauts to help them fall asleep, stay asleep, and wake up at the right time.
Stop, Breathe and Think — This app is unique in how it can be used in the daytime as well as nighttime. It features a daytime emotional check-in, brief guided meditations, and yoga and acupuncture tutorial videos. For nighttime, there are mediations and breathing exercises to enhance your sleep.
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If you deal with sleep deprivation, you don’t have to just accept it. Consider looking for a new mattress that fits your needs, upgrading your smartphone if necessary, and trying the many sleep apps that can aid your sleep routine. If tips like these work, you can avoid the need for prescription medication, potentially saving yourself from a slew of negative side effects.