Dr Amir gives sleep advice for clock change
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Many of us struggle to sleep at certain points in our lives due a variety of reasons. And as the weather gets colder the added issue of dealing with winter illnesses can wreak havoc with our sleeping patterns. However, there are ways to aid sleep in spite of the symptoms brought on by colds or flu.
Nic Shacklock from Online Bedrooms explained: “It can be really tough to fall asleep when you’re feeling under the weather.
“Common cold and flu symptoms can keep you up at night and the lack of sleep can also make us feel even worse the next day.
“Doing things like elevating your head with pillows and having a warm drink before bed can help to relieve some symptoms, helping you get a better night’s sleep and hopefully you’ll be over that cold before you know it.”
He shared seven tips for getting to sleep while battling winter illnesses below.
Drink a warm drink before bed
Try to have a warm drink about an hour and half before bed, this will help soothe a sore throat and will loosen up any congestion you may have.
Things like ginger tea and hot water with lemon or honey are good options.
Elevate your head with pillows
Lying completely flat can cause a build up of mucus in your throat which is what triggers coughing at night.
To prevent this from happening prop yourself up on two pillows.
Avoid using too many pillows as this can cause a strain on your neck.
Keep your room at a consistent temperature
The temperature of the room is a key factor in how well we sleep.
The optimum temperature is around 19C so it’s important to stick to this.
Make sure you’re sleeping with blankets that you can easily remove if you begin to feel too warm.
Use menthol rubs
Menthol rubs can’t get rid of any congestion but they are good for giving you some temporary relief which can be helpful when trying to nod off.
Just gently rub a generous amount on your neck and chest before bed.
Take some medication before going to bed
Try to have some over-the-counter medicine in the late evening.
This way the medication should kick in before bed providing you with some temporary relief to fall asleep.
Try essential oils
If you prefer natural remedies then essential oils are a great option. Oils like peppermint, lavender and eucalyptus are good for relieving cold and flu symptoms.
Place a few drops of oil into a bowl of steaming water, place your head a few inches away from it and inhale.
You might be tempted to rely on a nightcap to help you drift off to sleep but this isn’t ideal if you’re unwell.
Not only should you be avoiding alcohol when taking medication but it can also worsen symptoms like a sore throat.
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