One week later: Sleep habits

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A week ago I posted about trying to change my sleep habits. Staring at the ceiling for half of the night isn’t fun! One week later I thought I would check in and share what’s working and what isn’t.

 The first little change I made was to stop drinking caffeinated tea and coffee after 4pm. This had previously been 6pm but I recently read this article stating that caffeine stays in our system for up to 6 hours after we drink it. I’m putting that to the test so now its decaf only after 4pm. I’m not sure I’ve noticed much difference with this one to be honest. Annoyingly I haven’t been falling asleep any earlier. I’m going to change things up a bit and start drinking a cup of herbal tea before bed to see if it helps relax me. I like chamomile tea but don’t drink it very often so I’m going to slot it into my bed time routine and see if it makes a difference. I’m also going to put a drop of lavender essential oil on my pillow for the next week to see if that does anything.

I’m a light sleeper so noise and sunlight from outside easily wakes me up. I have blackout curtains but the light still keeps poking through so I rather nervously ordered myself a sleep mask. Why nervously? I don’t like having things around my head or on my face while I’m sleeping so I haven’t tried a sleep mask before. I imagined them to be restrictive and I’d heard horror stories about them giving you blurry vision the next morning from where the mask has been pressing against your eyes. That would definitely freak me out because I suffer from migraines and blurry vision is one of my early warning symptoms, that and pins and needles on my tongue (weird right?). After a bit of online searching I chose this one on Amazon from Bedtime Bliss.

My main reason for picking the Bedtime Bliss mask was the hollow eyes design. It doesn’t press on your eyelids and you can open your eyes or blink while wearing it but no light gets in as long as its pulled over your nose properly. I was surprised by how soft and comfortable it is, it doesn’t feel restrictive at all and can be adjusted at the back. My problem is that although the mask is soft and very lightweight, I’m not used to having anything on my face. Also because it takes me so long to get to sleep, I flip around a lot changing positions and often pull the mask on and off as I’m doing this. What I’ve started to do is sleep with the mask in bed next to me. When I’m in a comfortable position and feel like I’ll doze off soon, I pull the mask on. If it starts to annoy me, I take it off but keep it beside me. When the sun starts to wake me up, I pull the mask on and go straight back to sleep, which is great because it normally takes me a while to doze off again once the sun comes up. Sometimes I can wear it all night with no problems and when I am wearing it I sleep through the sunrise, result! The more I’m wearing it the more I’m getting used to it so hopefully soon I’ll be able to wear it straight through every night. It also comes in a little cloth bag with a set of earplugs. I haven’t tried those yet but might build up to it!

So to recap, there are 3 things I’m going to try for the next couple of weeks;

  1. Keep wearing the sleep mask.
  2. Drink herbal tea before bed.
  3. Put a drop of lavender oil on my pillow

Do you have any tricks for a better night sleep? Let me know in the comments.

Take care,

Hayley x

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