Cathy Gibson

24 April 2020

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Boost Your Sleep and Mental Health

Guest writer, Cheryl Conklin from Wellness Central (, offers some practical, budget-friendly tips on sleep.  Our focus all of April has been on anxiety and depression, while also providing lots of COVID-19 content, and sleep can dramatically impact both of these maladies.


Sleep is intimately connected with mental health. For instance, the lack of sleep has been linked to stress, anxiety, and depression, among other issues. And those who battle mental illness are more likely to suffer from sleep deprivation. If you’ve found yourself in this vicious cycle, there are things you can do to reverse the outcome — and they won’t break the bank. Here are some budget-friendly ways to improve your sleep habits so that you can foster your mental health.


Kick the Stress


Stress can affect everything from your mood to your immune system, so it’s essential to manage your stress in daily life. Getting sleep is a great way to reduce stress, but that’s not helpful if you’re finding it hard to sleep at night. Make time for free/inexpensive relaxation each day, even if it’s just for a few minutes here and there.


For instance, maybe you can take a five-minute break from your desk once an hour or spend time outdoors on your lunch break. Maybe you can try breathing exercises, yoga, and/or meditation. Another way to fight stress is to find a hobby. Stepping away from your daily obligations and engaging your mind into something unrelated to work can do wonders for your well-being. When stress is managed, it makes it much easier to get that much-needed rest.


Get Some Gadgets


There are many devices on the market today that can help you get better sleep. Toxin trackers, air purifiers, white noise machines, and sleep masks are just a few examples of gadgets designed to help people fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. And if you use promo codes and cashback offers, you can save money on these types of devices at retailers like Macy’s.


Go Natural


There are also some affordable natural remedies that can help you improve your sleep habits. For example, essential oils are known to help people relax before bed, making it easier to fall asleep. Essential oils come in a variety of scents (e.g., lavender, valerian, bergamot, etc.), and you can drop the oil in a diffuser or humidifier and keep it going through the night. Some people even dilute the oils and apply them directly to their skin.


Here are a few other natural remedies for poor sleep:

  • Chamomile tea
  • Passionflower tea
  • Melatonin
  • Glycine
  • Ginkgo biloba


Set a Routine in Stone


Going to sleep and waking up at the same time each day can do wonders for your sleep quality because it builds consistency with your circadian rhythm. Establish a strict bedtime, and if you don’t sleep well through the night, get out of bed at your established wake time anyway. This might be hard at first, but stick with it for a week or so and see if you don’t start sleeping better.


Watch What You Eat and Drink


Diet also plays a major role in how well you sleep. While it matters what you eat at all times of day, start by focusing on your dinners and late-night snacks, and avoid any foods that will cause indigestion, such as spicy, heavy, or acidic meals. Also, try to keep your portions similar to your breakfast or lunch, since eating too much can make it difficult for your body to digest through the night. Furthermore, moderate your alcohol intake, and don’t drink caffeinated drinks after lunch.


At some point, you have to break the cycle of poor sleep and mental health issues. So, it’s essential to take practical steps each day to reduce stress and look for different gadgets and natural remedies that can help you sleep. Finally, be sure to establish a consistent sleep/wake routine and be conscious of your diet. These easy, budget-friendly sleep tips might be all it takes to boost your mental health and well-being.


For more from Cheryl Conklin visit her helpful site:


Read more about how physical and mental health interact in this blog:

What Our Bodies Hold

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