If you are struggling to doze off at night or find yourself waking up at all-hours, you might want to reflect over how you spent your day. When did you last eat a large meal, drink a coffee or work out? Were you scrolling through your phone, scouring for last-minute London City Suites package deals or firing out emails right before bed? These activities can affect your sleep, which is essential for a healthy body and mind!
Cut out bad habits and follow our tips for a better night’s sleep – whether you’re tucked up at home in your own bed or hitting the hay in a plush room at London City Suites Barbican.
Reduce blue light exposure
Your body draws natural blue light from the sun to regulate your circadian rhythm (your natural sleep and wake cycles). This gives your mood a lift, perks up alertness and heightens reaction times. But digital devices such as laptops and smartphones emit large volumes of blue light, which can confuse the body. Cut out blue light in the evening by downloading an app to block its channel and switch off your devices at least one hour before bed, to rest your eyes. However, during the day you should ensure you expose yourself to as much sunlight as possible!
Have a pre-sleep digital detox
With your laptop snapped shut and your smartphone subdued for the night – it’s time to relax. Read a book, soak in a warm bath, meditate or play some soothing music whilst sipping on a herbal tea. Do something that enables you to thoroughly switch off and disconnect from emails, social media or any stress from the day. Make sure your mind is clear.
Easier said than done, but if you are getting into bed with worries and a cluttered mind you will inevitably struggle to fall asleep. Take this time to relax properly, anything you didn’t achieve today can be faced tomorrow. Your homely room at The Barbican Rooms will help you wind down.
Cut out stimulants in the afternoon
We drink caffeinated drinks to boost our energy and perk ourselves up, so it goes without saying that drinking coffee before bed isn’t conducive for getting a good night’s sleep! Coffee stimulates your nervous system and makes it harder for your body to relax. It can stay in your blood for up to eight hours, so give yourself a daily cut-off for caffeine. Opt for a pot of chamomile in the Montcalm Hotel afternoon tea offer to start the process.
Maintain a regular sleeping routine
Your body’s circadian rhythm naturally aligns itself with sunrise and sunset. Going to bed late at weekends and having long sleep-ins plays havoc on your cycle. Try to avoid this by maintaining a regular cycle. Of course, the occasional big night out won’t cause too much trouble but frequent interference will. This can be difficult for those on holiday or who go on frequent business trips. Ask your concierge here at the London City Suites to give you a wake-up call to prompt you to get up at your usual hour!
Avoid alcohol before bed
We hate to spoil your fun, but having too many tipples before bed won’t help you sleep. Alcohol in the system can reduce nighttime melatonin production which is vital for your circadian rhythm. It can lead to a disrupted sleep pattern, and will only make that hangover more brutal. Cap your nightcap at one small glass of wine, or equivalent, and instead make the most of the prosecco available at Montcalm Hotel during afternoon tea.
Eliminate lengthy naps
Naps are a surefire way to attract poor sleep. A long nap in the afternoon will energise your body so you’ll end up going to bed later and play havoc with your sleeping schedule. A short catnap (max. 30 minutes) in your room will recharge your batteries, but be sure to set an alarm or ask the reception to give you a wake-up call.
Take part in frequent exercise
There’s no better way to prevent insomnia than regular exercise. Studies show that people who exercise frequently drift off much more quickly than those with more sedentary lifestyles. The trick is to exercise during the day instead of close to bedtime.
Guests staying at the London City Suites Barbican can make use of the fitness suite at sister property, The Montcalm at The Brewery. Mind you, hit the gym early in the day!
Avoid large meals late at night
For some people, eating a late-night meal can disrupt the hormones which aid sleep. Tucking into dinner shortly before bed makes it harder for your body to break down the food particles, and can cause acid reflux and indigestion. This means you don’t sleep as deeply. Having a light healthy snack such as fruit or nuts is better than going to bed hungry, but prepare your evening eating habits so you don’t go to bed with a full stomach.
Prepare your room for sleep
Temperature, noise and light are integral to a good night’s sleep. Block out the light with blackout curtains or travel with an eye mask. Request a quiet hotel room at check-in if you’re a light sleeper. Prepare a playlist of sleep-inducing music in case you encounter disturbances, and always pack earbuds. Ensure the temperature in the room is comfortable, around 20°C is optimum for most people. Book one of the London City Suites package deals and you can have lavender aromas in your room – you’ll be asleep before you know it!