How to Create a Bedtime Routine to Reduce Anxiety

Are you having difficulty sleeping? You’re not the only one. In reality, sleeping disorders are common among Americans, with one in three getting less sleep than expected. And even if you think you slip enough or got those eight precious hours of sleep, your sleep quality may still suffer. Stress from work, health problems, financial difficulties, and other challenges can influence your sleep and sleeping routine. As a result, you might end up with insomnia. Unfortunately, sleep deprivation may have several negative consequences on your health, many of which you may be concerned about when lying in bed for hours. Fortunately, there are ways to break the cycle of sleep disorders and chronic illnesses that come with it. So here is how you can create a bedtime routine to reduce anxiety.

A strict sleeping schedule can help create a bedtime routine to reduce anxiety

Going to sleep and waking up at the same time every day will help your brain grow acccustomed to the routine and know when to sleep. Therefore, the first thing you should include in your bedtime routine is a strict schedule. To begin, set your bedtime and wake-up timings and stick to them. If you want to sleep at nine o’clock, ensure you’ve completed everything for the day until then. Also, leave yourself at least an hour for the before-bed routine. You will need some preparations to ensure you get a good night’s sleep, which we will discuss at the next point.

Stick to your before-going-to-bed ritual

Your before-bed habits can help you relax and prepare your body and mind for sleep. Also, it can help reduce your anxiety and combat stress. However, each routine or ritual will look different for each person. Some people relax before bed by reading a book, others prefer taking a shower, and some practice breathing exercises. Whatever you choose, ensure you have the time for it each evening. In addition, you can choose to do your relaxing before-bed activities at the same time each day. That will also signal the brain that it’s time to prepare for sleep.

Avoid drinking caffeine or alcohol before bedtime

Caffeine has two adverse effects on sleep. First, too much coffee can increase anxiety. Second, coffee keeps you awake. Therefore, you should avoid drinking caffeine at least four hours before sleep. Even if it might be tempting to drink a warm cup after a long day, it’s better to look for substitutes. For instance, you can have a glass of warm milk if you enjoy it or a herbal tea that can also help you relax. Chamomile, lavender, or valerian are great examples of relaxing tea options.

At the same time, stay away from alcohol before bed. Alcohol can also impact your sleep by disrupting your circadian cycle. Even if a few glasses of wine make it easier to fall asleep, many people wake up a few hours later as their bodies digest the alcohol. Furthermore, just like drinking because of social anxiety, it can lead to an addiction As the brain thinks it can relax only after you have some alcohol in your body. Therefore, avoid drinking alcohol before bedtime.

Declutter your bedroom

When you create a bedtime routine to reduce anxiety, include decluttering your bedroom. Before going to bed each evening, clean your room of any clutter. For instance, remove the pile of clothes from the floor, bed, or chair. In addition, removing all electronics from your bedroom is essential. Your laptop, phone, and TV can keep you awake. Looking at electronic devices a few hours before bed might disrupt your sleep cycle since they inhibit melatonin and keep you awake.

Create a relaxing ambient

Music can be medicine for those with anxiety and insomnia. Playing gentle, relaxing music as you prepare for bed might help release hormones that improve your mood. And by making you feel mentally at ease, your body will also feel calmer. Next, you can light some scented candles or do some aromatherapy to accompany the pleasant music. A relaxing smell will make you feel comfortable, warm, and ready for bed. If it helps, you can meditate in the calming environment you created and leave your anxiety and stress behind. There is no place for them in your bed.

Prepare your bedroom for sleep

The last thing you should do right before bed is to prepare your bedroom for sleep. That means creating a comfortable, dark, and quiet environment suitable for the sandman’s arrival. Therefore, set the thermostat to around 60F degrees, turn off any electronics, dim or turn off the light, and pull the curtains. Get into your favorite pajamas and lay in your comfy bed. We don’t expect you to fall asleep as your head touches the pillow. At least not at first. But it will happen in time if you stick to your sleep routine. Then you will be able to feel all the benefits of great sleepsuch as a healthier heart and less anxiety.

Avoid taking medicine

If you have a prescription for your anxiety and sleeping disorders, follow your doctor’s recommendation. Also, go to checkups periodically to see if the medicine or the dosage needs to be changed. At the same time, consult with your doctor regarding any medication you take, even if it’s not for sleeping. Some drugs can have side effects that disrupt sleep and give you anxiety, so they need to be changed.

If you aren’t prescribed any medicine for sleeping, don’t take any by yourself. Insomnia and anxiety are treated with a personalized medication scheme for each individual. Therefore, follow the advice of experts from and avoid self-medication. It can cause health problems and addiction, which are much harder to cure than to prevent.

Instead, you can drink herbal tea, as we mentioned before, or take a warm shower or bath. They are much more relaxing and destressing.

Final thoughts

Sleep is essential for the mind and body, but stress can disrupt it. However, following the abovementioned tips, you can create a bedtime routine to reduce anxiety. So take notes and put them into practice, and you will soon have a good night’s sleep. At the same time, if you don’t feel an improvement after changing your bedtime routine, we recommend contacting professionals that can help you fight your anxiety and insomnia.

A lot of serious consequences can directly be contributed to a lack of sleep. Getting help for any sleep disorder is vital to one’s overall health. If you’re suffering from insomnia and would like to seek treatment, contact your primary care physician to discuss your symptoms.

There are many treatment options available for insomnia including medications and cognitive behavioral therapy. If you live in Alaska and would like to speak to a sleep specialist about your chronic insomnia, contact The Alaska Sleep Clinic by clicking the link below to receive a free 10-minute phone consultation with a sleep educator who can help you determine the next best course of action for your sleep troubles.

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