Being a mom is exhausting. From changing dirty diapers to making sure your teenager is well fed and gets to school on time, it can be hard to find a break until your kids are out of the house. Good sleep, for new parents especially, can be something that’s incredibly difficult to come by.
The problem is, everybody needs that sleep to function properly throughout the day. Whether you’re the mother of an infant or toddler or working tirelessly to keep your teens in line, these tips should help you get some better sleep and wake up feeling refreshed and ready to tackle the day.
A Better Mattress
The first and most obvious way to improve your sleep is to get a better mattress. Unfortunately, mattresses can be expensive, so many of us spend most of our lives sleeping on some cheap mattress we bought years ago.
Thanks to the internet and the vast selection of mattresses, you can now find mattresses that will help you sleep better without costing you thousands of dollars. There are a lot of good choices, but your ideal mattress ultimately depends on your sleeping preferences.
The first point most people differ on is firmness. Some people like a nice, firm mattress that gives them plenty of support, while others like something a bit softer and squishier that’s easier on their back. Some even land somewhere in the middle, opting for a mattress that’s not quite firm or soft.
Next, you’ll need to decide how large you need your mattress to be. Many people go their whole lives sleeping on a mattress that’s not as large as they’d like it to be. Mattresses come in a few different sizes: twin, full, queen, king, and California king. You may also go for a pillow top mattress, which is an extra tall mattress with a soft, cushy layer on the top and a firmer support layer underneath.
Not many people take the time to go out and purchase new pillows very often, but it can totally transform the way you feel when you wake up in the morning. Just like your mattress provides support for the muscles throughout your body, a good pillow provides support for your neck.
The type of pillow you choose is going to depend on how you sleep and what you like. If you generally sleep on your side, you’re going to want a pillow that’s full but not too hard; one that provides support without being too stiff. Many back sleepers prefer something with a bit more body to it to keep their head and neck supported.
Think about what you like in a pillow and do some research to find a good one. You may have to pay upwards of $50 for a great pillow, but it will be worth it when you feel the difference in sleep.
Changing Your Habits
As important as a good mattress and pillows are, there’s no substitute for having a great bedtime routine and sticking to it. When you have a set time where you begin the process of getting ready for bed, your body will always be ready for bed around that time.
Try to avoid napping as much as possible. Napping during the day makes it difficult to sleep at night—especially when you take particularly long naps. You should also exercise daily as it helps prepare your body for sleep at night.
Scientists have discovered that exposure to blue light in the hours leading up to bedtime can also affect the way you sleep. As tempting as it can be to lie in bed with a phone checking Facebook or put your favorite show on Netflix before bed, blocking off a few hours at night to prepare for bed is much more important.
If you’re still having trouble sleeping, take a look around your room. Many people have devices like alarm clocks or computers which have LED lights that are constantly on. Removing these distractions can help you sleep better. You can also try using a fan or white noise machine to provide background noise while you fall asleep. This can help you fall asleep easier and stay asleep through the inevitable noises of the night.
For more sleep tips and advice see our article 6 Ways to Get Better Sleep.