What should I minimize or avoid for good sleep?
Artificial light after dark can send wake-up messages to the brain, suppressing the production of the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin and making it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep. In fact, a recent study showed that even bright room light could have this chemical effect. And early sunrays begin to activate the body and can cause some of us to rise before we’re ready.
Consider low-wattage, incandescent lamps at your bedside to help you wind down in the hours before sleep. Survey your room for any other sources of artificial light, for example, streetlamps or porch lights, or even the glow from the power buttons of electronics like TV’s or bright alarm clocks. Consider blocking these to make the room completely dark while you sleep. If you go to the bathroom during the night, do so by nightlight, instead of turning on stronger overhead lights.
consider keeping electronics out of the bedroom and turning them off—especially those used at close range—for at least an hour before bed. It can take some time for the body to come down from technology’s alerting effects. Protect your evening wind-down time by reading a book, for example. Let your body chemistry settle for the night.
Avoid caffeinated beverages, large meals and alcohol right before bedtime.