Sleep is an incredibly important part of a person’s health. When you’re not sleeping well, you’re more vulnerable to being irritable, angry, and clumsy. Your relapse triggers are more easily going to get under your skin. You might get angry at the slightest amount of stress. And you might even become clumsy, hurting yourself or others. However, when you’re sleeping well, you feel better and more equipped to take on the challenges of the day. You feel alert, awake, and alive. Below is a list of tips for getting a good night’s sleep in order to stay happy, healthy, and sober. Westwind Recovery® understands that living sober means developing healthy habits and positive coping mechanisms.
Setting a Schedule is the First Step in Living Sober
Knowing how to manage your time and structure the day is perhaps the most useful way to make living sober less challenging. Make sure to establish a set time for waking and going to bed at night. If you have a hard time falling asleep, then do not let yourself sleep in more than an hour extra on your days off. Staying in bed too long will prevent you from going to bed on time that night.
But you shouldn’t force yourself to go to sleep. If you have fallen asleep in 30 minutes, then get up and do something that is going to relax you. You might read a book or listen to soothing music. Avoid watching TV, bright screens such as using your phone, or any other activity involving bright light – all of which may activate your body and keep you awake.
What to Avoid: Caffeine, Alcohol, Nicotine, and Napping
While you already understand the need to avoid alcohol while living in sobriety, there are other common and considered non-addictive substances that can make getting the right amount of sleep difficult. Consuming caffeine and nicotine can affect your ability to go to sleep when you need to. It can also affect the quality of your sleep, especially if you’re consuming these substances for many hours throughout the day. Similarly, if you have a hard time falling asleep at night, then don’t nap during the day. Naps that are over an hour long or those that are later in the day can interrupt a healthy sleep routine.
Only Use Your Bed for Sleeping
Using your bed for other activities can begin to create an association between your bed and staying awake for those activities. If you reserve your time in bed for sleeping, your body will begin to associate the bed with falling asleep. Try to avoid using your smartphone, tablet, or laptop in your bed. Not only does screen time strain your eyes and keep your mind from being able to fall asleep but also it’s important to have clear areas of your living space for specific tasks.
Exercise and Eat Well
Eating well and feeding yourself foods that respect the health of your body can facilitate healthy sleeping. In the same way, keeping your body active through exercise is also a way to stay healthy. It will also help the body rest at night. However, exercising and eating big meals within two hours of bedtime can in fact affect your ability to fall asleep as well as the quality of your sleep.
Sleep in a Comfortable Environment
When you’re comfortable you’re more likely to fall asleep when you climb into bed. Make sure the room you sleep in is quiet, comfortable, and dark. You may need to use an eye mask, earplugs, and fans to stay comfortable.
Living Sober with Help from Westwind Recovery®
These are seven suggestions for maintaining a healthy sleep regimen. Healthy sleep alone plays a significant part in recovery from addiction and substance abuse. At Westwind Recovery®, we believe in helping individuals not only overcome their addiction to drugs or alcohol but also lay the foundation for a lasting recovery. To help with the process, it may be useful for individuals early in recovery to explore our sober living homes:
Reach out to us today at 855.340.8832 to learn more.