5 Things You Should Never Do Before Bed

Sleep deprivation is an epidemic. It contributes to obesity, depression, heart disease and overall bitchiness. It is not just our busy schedules preventing us from getting enough shut eye. Even when we go to bed at a reasonable time, many of us cannot fall asleep. Often we are self-sabatoging with terrible habits. Here are the 5 top things you should never do before going to bed.

  1. Drink caffeine. Ideally, your last dose of caffeine should be before noon for optimal sleep. If you need an afternoon pick me up, try a natural energy boost like fruit or exercise.
  2. Stare at a screen. The lights from TVs, computers, phones and kindles mess with our brain, and prevent the natural de-stimulation that should happen in the evening hours. Two hours with no screens is recommended, but I realize this is asking almost the impossible. If you are having a hard time falling asleep try for at least 30 min to an hour with no artificial glare before bed. Read: Why Screentime and Sleep Don’t Mix.
  3. Eat a big meal. It’s best to stop eating at least a couple hours before bedtime. Why? Several reasons. You cannot properly digest if you are lying down. It can cause acid reflux. And, it can contribute to insomnia or waking in the middle of the night.

  4. Get your 8 glasses of water in. I’m a huge proponent of drinking a lot of water each day. But, if it is 9pm and you are up to glass #3, don’t cram. Go to sleep with an empty bladder and try to do better tomorrow. Read: Tips for Drinking More Water.

  5. Pick a fight, check work emails or look up an old boyfriend on Facebook. Basically, don’t do anything anxiety-provoking as stress is worse than a jackhammer outside your bedroom when it comes to keeping you up.

Think about the hour or two before bed as a time to unwind and start shutting down your brain. If you anticipate the kids needing help with homework, try to get it done before dinner. If you have a work situation, handle it earlier in the night. Tomorrow is another day, and tomorrow will definitely be a better, more productive day if you get a decent night’s sleep.


Read: Are You Getting Enough Sleep?

Are You as Smart as a 5th Grader?

Are Your Friends Having More Sex Than You?

Read: 5 Tips to Drink More Water

Make: Apricot Chia Energy Bar

Facebook Twitter Google Digg Reddit LinkedIn Pinterest StumbleUpon Email

Author: Karen Latimer

Dr. Latimer is a Family Physician and Wellness & Parenting Coach. She works with parents who want to feel more confident when helping their children and coaches young adults to help them better navigate college life and transitions. Contact her at drkarenlatimer@gmail.com to learn more. She is the author of two Audible Originals, Take Back the House -- Raising Happy Parents and Worry Less, Parent Better. She is also the co-founder of the app that makes your life easier and puts social in a healthier place -- List'm.


Sign up for our email newsletter