It's a fact of life: While some people are early birds, others are night owls. As a night person, you likely have a lot of unique needs, from your ideal bedtime to what to do about the inevitable sleep problems that come with being one. Luckily, we've identified the most important things that every night owl should know but first, let's start by defining what it means to be a night owl and outlining some of the perks, differences, and problems that come with it.
What is a night owl? A night owl stays up late and sleeps in the following day, practically the opposite of the average body's circadian rhythm. Circadian rhythms are natural processes that follow a 24-hour cycle, where physical and mental behaviors respond primarily to light and dark. Night owls are typically more active later in the evening, to the point where they have difficulty getting up early in the morning.
Night owls typically stay active late in the evening, and extreme night owls can sometimes last until just before or even after early morning. It is believed that the majority of them feel more alert just before the time when the average person is about to sleep. Some night owls prefer or have a habit of staying up late, while others have difficulty going to bed at night. Those in the latter category may be dissatisfied with their situation and have trouble focusing during the day, leading to a frustrating and emotional state. Don't worry if you fall into this category; we have good news for you: there are ways to cope with those challenges and make your life easier.
Here are four sleep hacks you need to know as a night owl:
Keep a consistent sleep schedule
Begin by waking up and going to bed on the same schedule every day, including weekends and holidays. It's ideal if you can get to bed by 10 p.m. and start waking up around 8 a.m., depending on when you have the most energy throughout the day. If this is difficult, try setting a "wake-up" alarm 45 minutes before your preferred wake-up time—this way, you'll get up at your desired time even if you have difficulty falling asleep at first.
Keep in mind that if you maintain a consistent schedule, your body will learn to adjust the circadian rhythm (body clock), and you will be tired at the same time every evening. This is the most critical aspect of sleeping better as a night owl.
Make the room as dark as possible
Sleep is most relaxing when it is not interrupted by light or sound. Too many light sources in the room, such as lamps or cell phone screens, can interfere with your body's natural circadian rhythm and keep you awake all night. To help with this issue, use eye masks, earplugs, and blackout curtains to block out any light and sound.
Using blackout curtains and an eye mask will eliminate any trace of light and allow your body to focus on its natural rhythm for waking up and falling asleep, allowing you to stay uninterrupted through the night!
Consider using CBD before bed
CBD, commonly known as cannabidiol, is gaining popularity for its natural relaxing effects, which may translate into improved sleep quality. There are many forms of CBD to try, but a new favorite includes CBD dip. Users place a soft pouch full of filler and CBD between the gum and lip. The saliva helps your body absorb the CBD and deliver it to your bloodstream.
Whether you try dipping with a Hemp dip pouch or other forms of CBD, it may help set your mind and body in a calm state. Dipping isn't for everyone, but if a discreet, low-maintenance supplement sounds like something you'd enjoy, go for it! This is a great way to help your body relax naturally and fall asleep.
Use more blankets than you need
If you feel restless or can't get enough blankets while sleeping, consider investing in a weighted blanket. Commonly known as gravity blankets, weighted blankets are tightly woven fabrics with evenly distributed plastic pellets. The weight of the blanket lulls you into a deeper sleep by simulating pressure on your body, similar to the force provided by another body during snuggling or when your head rests on a pet's furry belly.
Being warm while sleeping helps your circadian rhythms enter sleep mode faster, allowing you to sleep quicker and for more extended periods than you would with other blankets.
When it comes to getting better sleep, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Some of us have trouble sleeping because we are too stressed or too preoccupied with the events and worries of the day. Hence, before attempting any sleep hacks, make sure to take a break from work and other stressful activities. In addition, if you're extra determined about improving your sleep and getting the rest you deserve, don't be afraid to look into better sleep hygiene, therapy options, and various other healthy lifestyle choices to help you achieve your goals.
Keep in mind that you may require professional assistance if you still have trouble sleeping despite following the above suggestions. Some of us find it challenging to sleep, but getting enough good quality sleep is critical for our bodies and minds. After all, you deserve the best rest and much more enjoyment from everything you do.