Your emotional and physical well-being depends on the state of your overall health. Good health is directly related to a high life expectancy. Sleep is one of the most essential parts of maintaining good overall health that helps your body recover and handle stress, lowers the risk of many serious conditions, and maintains optimal levels of energy.

So, what you need to do to get quality sleep? We’ve collected eight things to do before bedtime to improve overall health:

1. Go to bed at the same time regularly
You should go to bed at the same time every day and even on the weekends. A consistent sleep schedule is key to optimal health.

Your well-being depends on the recovery that happens during deep sleep. Hormones that are produced during sleep stimulate important functions including liver detox, muscle building, tissue regeneration, the breakdown of fat, and normalization of blood sugar levels. When you go to bed at the same time and wake at the same time, it trains your body for sleep.

2. Limit your alcohol intake
Alcohol is high in sugar and can do a number to your night’s sleep. Many people think that alcohol actually helps them fall asleep, but it doesn’t allow for a restful night.

Alcohol can disrupt neurotransmitters in your brain that are responsible for regulating sleep cycles like REM, your deep sleep cycle. In menopausal women, alcohol consumption before bed can exacerbate night sweats and hot flashes.

3. Prepare your body for sleep
Preparing your body for sleep by lowering body temperature, blood pressure, and levels of the stress hormone cortisol is a good way to promote deep sleep. This downshift should occur the hour before bedtime and typically includes three 20-minute sections: during the first 20 minutes, you should do things you must get done. If you don’t you will think about these things while you’re trying to fall asleep. These might include making a to-do list for the morning, journaling, and preparing for tomorrow.

During the second 20 minutes, you need to do your nightly hygiene routine including taking a hot bath or shower, brushing your teeth, flossing, etc.

During the final 20 minutes, you should do relaxing activities like light stretching or reading a book (no electronics). This technique will help you fall asleep faster.

4. Maintain a good oral health
Brushing your teeth and flossing are crucial parts of maintaining a cavity-free mouth, but that’s not all you should be doing for healthy teeth. While you sleep, your body produces less saliva and your mouth gets dry. Saliva is your body’s natural neutralizer of the harmful bacteria that provoke dental issues.

You can try using a mouthwash. While many dentists don’t recommend using mouthwash, for people who are more prone to tooth decay and/or have gingivitis, mouthwash can help maintain good dental health. If you don’t know whether you need to use it, talk to your family dentist about it.

Keep in mind that mouthwash is not a replacement for brushing and flossing, but is a healthy defense against bacteria and plaque.

5. Try taking magnesium
Magnesium has lots of essential functions in your body. It’s responsible for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body. Taking magnesium might help as a sleep aid. Magnesium can increase the number of neurotransmitter GABA in the brain. GABA helps relax your mind and calm your thinking so you can fall asleep. If you take magnesium, you might want to consider taking it before bed to see if it helps relax your body and mind.

Author's Bio: 

I am Amelia Grant, journalist, and blogger. I think that information is a great force that is able to change people’s lives for the better. That is why I feel a strong intention to share useful and important things about health self-care, wellness and other advice that may be helpful for people. Being an enthusiast of a healthy lifestyle that keeps improving my life, I wish the same for everyone.

Our attention to ourselves, to our daily routine and habits, is very important. Things that may seem insignificant, are pieces of a big puzzle called life. I want to encourage people to be more attentive to their well-being, improve every little item of it and become healthier, happier, stronger. All of us deserve that. And I really hope that my work helps to make the world better.