COVID-19 pandemic has spread across more than 180 countries with more than 4 million infected and 250,000 casualties. Covid-19 has created havoc on the national health system of all the affected countries and the economy has come almost to a standstill. People have been forced to stay in lockdowns across most of the affected nations. People who have got infected are facing a tough time and the people who are so far safe from catching it are struggling as well.
It has affected the mental health of most of the world population. People have to follow a new norm of social distancing, washing hands repeatedly. Behavioral changes required to fight this pandemic are taking a toll on mental well-being. Due to lockdowns, physical activity has reduced and that is going to harm your physical well-being.
We must be active mentally and physically in whatever possible ways. During these uncertain and equally distressing times, you need to follow all the strategies that minimize your stress levels and helps you to eliminate anxiety.
An adequate good quality sleep daily is essential for your physical and mental well-being in the normal world, with the world facing COVID-19 pandemic and its impact is adding to the anxiety and increasing stress levels for people, getting adequate amounts of good quality sleep is more important now than ever.
Here are five proven tips that you should follow to have a good night’s rest amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
1. Follow a Schedule
You should set a schedule and make it a routine to help you to ease your mind. In uncertain times, following a routine is going to be of great help for your mind and body to set to a pattern and avoid anxiety and increased stress levels.
You should follow a schedule for work, eating, exercising, entertainment, and most importantly sleep.
You should follow good sleep hygiene, have a bedtime ritual like brushing your teeth, washing your face, applying lotion.
Since most of us are at home during the lockdowns, you should not fall prey to the temptation of taking naps during the day. Daytime naps are bad for your good quality sleep during the night.
2. Have Perfect Sleep Environment
Your bedroom should serve as a perfect sleep environment that helps you to relax, helps you in reducing stress levels, and get rid of the anxiety that has been forced upon you due to pandemic.
As per some sleep experts, your mind must create an association between bed and sleep. They recommend that the bedroom should only be used for sleep and intimate moments.
During pandemic forced lockdowns, if you are working from home, you should ensure that work stays out of your bedroom. Also, you should ensure that your bedroom doesn’t become your entertainment zone, all the electronic gadgets like TV, laptop, gaming devices, and tablets should be kept out of the bedroom for getting good quality sleep.
Your bedroom should be cool, no external lights should pierce in and no outside noise should enter to disturb your sleep.
Above all, your bedroom should have a perfect bed with a good mattress. A good mattress should be able to support your body perfectly and should be able to regulate air to keep you cool and not sweat when you are asleep. Check out this article from Sleep Standards to find the right mattress for yourself.
3. See the Natural Light
With you being stuck at home under the lockdown, it becomes imperative that you get enough natural light. You should ensure that you expose yourself to natural light and don’t stay indoor under artificial lights. Exposure to light helps your brain to regulate your circadian rhythm so that your body follows a regular sleep cycle. As you are dealing with disruptions to your usual daily life, you should ensure that your brain is exposed to light-based cues to have a positive effect on your sleep cycle.
You should open windows, close the curtains and blinds to let the light come inside your home during the day.
One important that you need to take care of is that you should avoid exposing yourself to blue light emitted from your electronic gadgets very close to your bedtime. You should avoid using electronic devices (Laptop, cell phone, etc) at least an hour before your bedtime.
4. Meditate and Exercise
During uncertain times it becomes more vital that your mind stays calm, alert, and sharp. You should meditate and do mindfulness activity to keep stress and anxiety out. You won’t be able to get a good night’s rest if your mind is stressed and anxious.
Also, you should not allow challenging circumstances to throw your work-out schedule out of gear. You should ensure that you do enough exercise at home, it will also take your mind of what is happening around the world due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Staying active always helps to achieve good quality sleep during the night.
You should ensure you maintain social distancing if going out for a walk, or jog as part of your exercise routine.
You should do heavy exercises only in the morning and should only do light stretching or light exercises in the afternoon or evening.
There are lots of resources available online that should be able to guide you in meditation and exercising.
5. Watch What You Eat and Drink
During COVID-19 pandemic forced lockdowns you have to adjust to what you can buy and what is available for you to eat. With no restaurants or bars open, you can’t go out to eat or drink.
You should maintain a healthy diet that will help you to get a good night’s rest.
You should be very cautious with the intake of caffeine-laden foods and drinks and, alcoholic drinks. You should avoid caffeine-laden food and drinks in the evening as they may spoil your sleep.
You should avoid binge eating as well as not having more meals than your usual intake.
The world is going through difficult times because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Being constantly at home due to lockdowns takes a toll on your mental and physical health, it is highly required that you follow these proven tips for having a good night’s rest daily.