I have always had trouble sleeping and over the years I have tried different things to help me get that peaceful rest that seems very elusive. Whereas some of these “remedies” work (at least for some time) most others are just a waste of time.
It is in my pursuit to find that perfect sleeping aid that one of my friends advised me to take a shower at night before retiring to bed. At first, I thought it was one of those things that will make one feel refreshed but without any significant impact on your sleep. However, nowadays I cannot go to bed without first hitting the shower and so I can tell you with certainty that it works.
So how does showering help one sleep better?
#1 It Lowers Body Temperature
It is a fact that a drop in your body temperature will slow down your metabolic functions such as heart rate and breathing. The slowing down in metabolic functions, in turn, make you feel drowsy and hence want to sleep. A night shower can help you sleep better because it is very efficient in lowering your body temperature. I always take the night shower after finishing everything that I want to do before sleeping. And this is because I start feeling sleepy immediately I step out of the bathroom door. The only issue that you might probably have is whether to take a cold or hot shower.
While there is a misconception that a cold shower is the best I know from experience that a hot one is the most effective. You might feel fresh after a cold shower but you bodies internal mechanism will work hard to raise the temperature within a few minutes. However, the opposite is also true for a hot shower. When emerging from the bathroom after the hot bath, the air around you will lower the temperature drastically, and this is what you need for a perfect sleep.
#2 Skin Moisturizing
I hate getting into bed with oily skin, and this is not only because it makes my pillow dirty but also because it will prevent me from getting a good night’s sleep. Oily skin is sticky, and as it rubs against your silky bed sheets, you will not sleep well. A short shower with warm water will help get rid of these oils. If you also have dry skin like mine, the itch will not let you sleep. But, taking a shower will open up the pores, and so applying some lotion is all that you need to ensure that the skin has enough moisture for a peaceful sleep.
#3 Anxiety and Tension Relieving
After a long day at work and all the stress that comes with it, most of us will have a stiff neck, headaches and shoulder pain. These are some of the things that will prevent you from enjoying that restful and peaceful sleep. However, taking a warm shower before bed will improve blood circulation by dilating the blood vessel, and this will, in turn, soothe the muscles and help the body relax. Apart from this, research also proves that warm water can contribute to reducing anxiety and clearing the mind. And so if you are worried about that important meeting that you have tomorrow then a hot shower will help get rid of some of the anxiety so that you can get some sleep.
#4 Showering Helps to Clear Lungs
If you are struggling to breathe or you keep on coughing, you will not sleep well. Accumulated mucous will cause your nasal passage to clog, and so you will not breathe smoothly. Instead of running to the pharmacy for medications you can have a hot shower just before bed because the warmth will be very beneficial. The warmth that you get from the shower is very useful in draining mucous from your nose and research also proves that it helps in getting rid of irritants from the lungs. And this just means that if you make the night shower part of your routine, you will not have the constant coughs in the nighttime that prevent most of us from enjoying an uninterrupted sleep.
#5 Keeps the Bugs at Bay
I hate dust mites because they will never let you enjoy your sleep. Just like most people I have tried several things to get rid of them but they always come back. However, I no longer have to worry about them because since I started taking a shower before going to bed, I no longer feel them in my bed. The reason behind this is the fact that they do not have anything to feed on. Dust mites feed on dead skin and so by showering and moisturizing before going to bed means that they have nothing to feed on and so they cannot survive on your bed.
#6 Removes Toxins
You will be amazed by the level of toxins that your body accumulates during the day. Even if you think that you work in an immaculate and serene office, there are many other places that you can get toxins. You might not see or smell the toxins, but their presence will make you feel disturbed and hence unable to sleep. A hot bath at night will help get rid of these bad things and leave your body clean and fresh for a perfect sleep.
The same also applies when it comes to allergens because they get attached to your clothes and skin during the day. If you do not get rid of them by showering you may inhale them when sleeping, and this is not only uncomfortable but will also prevent you from sleeping. Also, make sure that you wear some clean clothes after showering because the allergens might also be on the clothes. Lastly, keep in mind that you still need to change the bed sheets and pillow covers regularly even if you shower every night before going to bed.
A warm shower was the missing element in my pursuit for a peaceful and an interrupted sleep. It might also be yours, and you will not know this without trying it out. Start by taking a warm shower today before going to bed and I can guarantee you that you will sleep better than last night.