Hoping to get a good night’s sleep, maybe you’ve tried some old methods including a cup of hot herbal tea or a warm bath before bedtime.
Want an even better chance of a good night’s sleep? Here’s what not to do:
4:30 p.m. Chug some coffee. While it may help you get through the next few hours of a long workday, a late afternoon java may likely do more harm than good.
9:00 p.m. Load up on protein. Be cautious of postponing dinner too long – your body may be digesting your meal, when it should be sleeping.
9:30 p.m. Get totally stressed. While it may be easy to stress about how to get enough sleep, it won’t help you get to dreamland any faster. Stressing about sleep may make it harder to drift off.
10:00 p.m. Believing a nightcap is the way to relax. Alcohol can help you fall asleep easier, but, as it wears off during the night, it may actually cause disruption in your sleep.
10:05 p.m. Turn on the TV. Watch something with lots of sirens and violence, to trigger your own natural stress response to fictional drama. And, the TV’s blue glow will tell your brain it’s not bedtime yet.
11:00 p.m. Turn up the heat. A cooler bedroom is actually more advantageous to sleep. Experts believe the sweet spot is between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit.
11:05 p.m. Pull up Netflix in bed. The screen glow will further confuse your brain by limiting production of the sleep promoting hormone melatonin.
11:55 p.m. When you can’t fall asleep, continue to lie there and stress. While it may seem counterproductive, your best bet is to get out of bed and do something more relaxing. Just make sure it’s not too stimulating and doesn’t involve bright lights.
6:55 a.m. Hit the snooze button. Yes, you’ll get a few extra minutes of sleep, but the alarm disrupts your natural sleep cycle, and maybe during important REM stage. Those 5 extra minutes may be doing more harm than good! huffpost health 3/15/14