The kids are finally out of the house. All those years of interrupted sleep with babies, toddlers or teenagers. No one wakes us up these days. You’d think we’d be sleeping like babies.
It’s no joke. More than half of women between the ages of 35 and 55 can’t sleep because of menopause issues. If you’re not sleeping like a baby, here are ten easy to implement tips that will have you clocking in more minutes of that precious slumber.
Tip: If you are tossing and turning at night and still can’t get to sleep, check out the top five sleep tools I recommend (don’t worry – they are all crazy inexpensive and don’t require an Rx ) at the bottom of this post!
(This post may contain affiliate links. My full disclosure policy is sort of boring, but you can find it here.)
1. Keep to a regular sleep schedule. We’re all heard this one before, but now without kids, it may be possible. Try to go to bed and get up around the same time every day. Just like toddlers, our sleep really benefits from routines. Going to bed on schedule and waking up at the same time lets your biological clock do its thing. Staying up late and sleeping in late on the weekends feels good while you’re doing it, but just confuses your body.
2. Sleep in a cool room. Sleeping in a bedroom with lowered temperatures signals your body that it’s time to sleep. Aim for 60-67 degrees. Make your room as dark as possible while you’re at it.
3. Exercise. Try to get some vigorous exercise in every day. Even walking is better than nothing. If you have a desk job, make it a point to walk around every hour or run up a couple of flights of stairs. You’ll sleep better.
4. Stay away from the light. Minimize use of your cell phone, tablet, computer screen and TV at night. The light from these items actually sends confusing signals to your brain and disrupts the hormone melatonin. Read or listen to some relaxing music instead. If you must use a screen, check out apps like F.lux for your computer, NightShift for your iPhone, or Twilight for your Android, which will stop you from being blinded by the light at night.
5. Avoid alcohol and spicy foods. Can you say indigestion? That glass of wine may relax you and make you drowsy but it will disrupt your sleep.
More Tips For Better Sleep
6. Avoid the nap, especially in the afternoon. Try your hardest to resist the temptation to nap after about 4 pm. Just hold on until bedtime for a more restful, restorative sleep. If you must nap, try a nappuccino!
7. Block out the noise. Use a fan or a white noise machine. The white noise allows for a steady hum and consistent level of sound all night so you aren’t startled by the occasional random sound. This really helps if you have pets with jingling tags or a spouse who breathes heavily. If your significant other snores invest in a pack of earplugs.
8. Buy a larger bed. Just because I love my Cal King bed doesn’t mean I love my husband any less. People need room when they sleep to stretch out, roll over and adjust without disturbing their partner. I’m all for togetherness, just not when I’m sleeping.
9. Get your own blanket. Now that I’m in perimenopause, I love being able to throw off my covers in the middle of the night. My husband, however, is not so appreciative when this happens. Separate blankets allow everyone to sleep the way they want, whether it’s rolled up like a burrito, or sprawled out on top of the covers.
10. Try a sleep remedy. I swear by Estroven. I buy it at Costco. My OBGYN told me about it after trying nearly everything over the counter. I was dying with hot flashes at night. It works like a charm. You need to give it 6 weeks or so to start regulating your hot flashes, but I guarantee it’s worth it!
11. Try Paced Breathing. If you can’t sleep because you’re too hot, try this breathing technique.
How do you fall asleep and stay asleep?