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Bedtime Routine

#GoodNights Challenge with Julia from the Lemon Stripes

Julia shares how sticking to a routine and powering down electronics helped her get better sleep Each month, the National Sleep Foundation is partnering with select bloggers and digital influencers for a new iteration of the #GoodNights challenge. We’ll explore new ways to get a good night’s rest by showcasing real life examples of how a good night’s sleep can positively impact your body, mind and spirit. We know that many of our readers want real life tips for sleeping better, so follow along and share your own #GoodNights stories by using hashtag across social media channels like Twitter and Instagram. July’s Challenge This month, we asked Julia, the blogger behind the lifestyle blog Lemon Stripes, to take…

Sleep & Music

Learn about the all-natural sleep aid that helps you fall asleep fast and wake up refreshed. Lullabies aren’t just for babies—they’re great for adults, too. Using soothing music to wind down before bed each night is perfectly acceptable—even encouraged—as a relaxation technique. It turns out that bedtime listening can even help people with sleep disorders by boosting sleep quality and quantity. The benefits may not happen overnight—it can take as many as three weeks to see improvement—but listening to music pays off. Putting on some tunes can help you fall asleep faster, wake up less during the night, and feel more rested in the morning. Music can help sleepers of all ages, from toddlers through…

Seven Worst Sleep Habits

Avoid making these sleep-sabotaging mistakes before bed. It takes more than logging seven to nine hours to ensure a good night’s sleep. What you do—and don’t do—at bedtime and even in the hours before you turn in can affect how you look and feel when your alarm buzzes in the a.m. These seven common mistakes could be robbing you of precious zzz’s.Ignoring Your Coffee CurfewJust say no to that after-dinner cappuccino. While you’re at it, skip the 4:00pm java run, as well. It takes around six hours for just half of the caffeine that you drink to disappear from your body. Plus, you become less efficient at processing caffeine with age, so even…

“Top Off” with Milk or Formula to Help Your Baby Sleep?

A MythBusters-style investigation into the idea that a large meal before bed helps baby sleep better. As every parent knows, waking at night to feed a baby—whether by breast or bottle—can be incredibly hard. High on the list of tricks to eek out more precious minutes of sleep is the advice to feed the baby extra milk, to “top off” or “fill the tank” before bed. A bigger meal, or even the addition of formula or rice cereal, will make her sleep longer. So the reasoning goes. This turns out to be a widespread myth. Newborn babies eat frequently and sleep in short stretches because their nervous and digestive…

Screenless Nights

There’s nothing like the threat of being publically shamed to motivate changing one’s behaviors A few months ago, Stephen Dubner from Freakonomics Radio interviewed me for one of his popular podcasts exploring behavioral economics.   Expecting to discuss my research, I found myself engaged in in a conversation about my own personal bedtime routines.  I reluctantly shared that, for me, a typical night included looking at my iPhone at bedtime, in the middle of the night while nursing my infant, and usually first thing in the morning.   He was surprised and intrigued that I, despite the abundant research indicating that screen time at night is associated with delayed sleep onset and shorter total sleep time, did…

What's Your Nighttime Routine?

Get inspired by these soothing ways to drift off to dreamland. The right bedtime routine can not only help you fall asleep faster, but also help you sleep more soundly all night long so you wake up feeling refreshed and ready for the day. Get inspired for bedtime bliss with these soothing nighttime rituals from busy professionals who savor every minute of sleep—just like you do. Write Down What’s Causing You Stress “The most important thing that I do to help myself sleep is that I make a new list of all the things that I am worried about. Making a new list instead of reviewing and adding to an old list is part of…

What's Your Morning Routine?

Check out this advice from industry pros on how to kick-start your day to ensure better sleep. It’s 7:00am—what are you doing? Hopefully, you’re practicing one of the following morning routines that health experts, CEOs, and more use. Not only do these routines boost your overall wellbeing, but they can actually improve your sleep at the end of the day. Read on for tips on how you can make their habits work for you. Have a Regular Wake-Up Time. Scott Weiss, a New York City physical therapist and trainer who has worked with the National Football League and gymnast Kerry Strugg, sets his alarm for the same time every morning—whether or not he actually has to…

What’s on Your Night Table?

Three popular mom bloggers share what items help them sleep at night. The things that you keep within arm’s reach while you snooze can say a lot about you—and how you sleep at night. Below, popular mom bloggers share what they keep close by when they shut their eyes, and how these items help them hit the sack. Follow their lead for sounder sleep. “I enjoy reading a book for 20 minutes in bed to unwind before I go to sleep. It brings me down from the stresses of the day and stops me from thinking about my to-do list (i.e. Did I remember to pack the kids’ backpacks? Did I RSVP to Sue’s wedding?…

There's A Monster Under My Bed!

Giving a child control of their fear is the first step to sound sleep for all. For some children, nighttime fears are common, and can interfere with falling asleep.  This can result in a child stalling at bedtime, not getting enough sleep, and/or being sleepy and irritable the next day.  So how is a parent to deal with these “monsters”? Part of normal development is imagination, and for younger children the ability to tell the difference between real and imaginary is not yet developed.  In addition, all rational thought is gone when a child (or adult) is tired at night.  So simply telling your child that there is no such thing as monsters will…

Six Great Sleep Books for Adults

These top reads will help you get the rest that you crave. It’s no wonder that the sleep section of bookstores can be overwhelming: There are thousands upon thousands of books available on the subject! And while some are winners, others may keep you up at night wondering, “Why did I buy this?” To help you narrow down the selection, check out these top picks below. Whether you’re hoping to end insomnia, fall asleep faster, or simply get your baby to nap longer, one of these reads will be right for you. For Sounder Sleep: If you’re looking to improve the quality and quantity of your sleep, check out Sleep Smarter: 21 Proven Tips…