Sleep is crucial to our everyday wellbeing. If you're not catching enough z's or often wake up feeling exhausted, chances are your bedtime habits aren't doing you any favours.
We all aim for the recommended eight hours of sleep a night, but the reality is that our lifestyles often prevent us from reaching the daily quota.
We caught up with chiropractor and Neighbours star Tim Robards to find out the essentials for a good night's sleep.
1. Minimise blue light
There's no avoiding our smartphones these days — they have become a central part of our lives. But the blue light emitted from your devices can actually stimulate your body and suppress natural melatonin production — the hormone that induces relaxation and sleep.
Try limiting the use of devices before bed and leave them in another room to avoid the temptation.
If you really can't stay away and find yourself scrolling your socials late into the night, it is essential to block out as much of your device's blue LED light as you can. Turn up the warmth on your screen, and consider investing in a pair of blue light glasses.
2. Invest in the right pillow
Pillows can make or break a good night's sleep, providing essential support for the head, neck and shoulders.
Finding the perfect pillow depends on your sleeping position. Side sleepers may benefit from a medium-firm pillow with a shoulder recess that provides the right support in the right places. Opt for a pillow like the Dentons Medi Rest that will help ensure the correct posture and alignment and prevent you from waking up with any stiffness or back pain.
The Australian-made pillow is formulated with Dentons Softec™ foam, a therapeutic foam moulded into a waved surface that enhances airflow — essential for a restful sleep.
"Most of us spend a third of our life in bed, so choosing the right pillow is essential for a healthy body," says Tim.
3. Nurture your body
Between work, chauffeuring the kids from place to place and running errands, fitting a little self-love time into your day can be tricky.
Even though your schedule may be a little chaotic, try to incorporate some form of exercise into your daily routine — maybe a sunrise yoga session, a walk around the block in your lunch break or some stretching before going to bed.
On those days where a workout seems like a little too much, opt for a soak in the bath. Adding Epsom salts or your favourite essential oil can help soothe your muscles and relax your mind.
4. Stay hydrated
Did you know that by simply breathing in your sleep, your body loses water? Going to bed dehydrated can disrupt sleep, causing a dry mouth, snoring and even cramps throughout the night. And there's nothing worse than waking up with that sore, dry throat feeling.
Water is essential to a good night's sleep. Try to get in your two litres a day, whether that be through drinking herbal teas (avoiding caffeinated teas is essential before bed) or just plain water. Adding a pinch of magnesium — the main ingredient in Epsom salts — helps to calm the nervous system down and relax the muscles.
5. Comfort is key
It's the small things that transform your sleeping environment into a cool and calming haven.
Whether it's spritzing a soothing scent on your pillow right before bedtime or investing in beautiful bedding, make sure you love your bed set-up. Ensure your room has adequate ventilation and your bed has enough layers to keep you warm but not over-heated.
Hit play on the video above to see Tim Robards' top tips and tricks to unplug, unwind and get a good night's sleep.
Brought to you by Dentons.