As your wedding day approaches, stress, anxiety, or pure excitement might make it hard to sleep. However, you need it to regulate your emotions, curb your appetite, and feel your best. Not sure how you’re going to do that with the pressure mounting? We’ve got some tips to help you sleep in the weeks and days leading up to your big day.
Plan a Sleep-Friendly Schedule
The fine details can start to weigh you down at night. You have control of the wedding schedule so try to think about sleep when planning. For example, if you’re doing a rehearsal dinner, start it early enough that you have time for adequate sleep. Welcome and thank all your guests, but be sure to say goodnight when there’s still time to relax before bed. Avoid alcohol. It makes you sleepy at first but it causes you to stay in the lightest sleep stages so you’re more likely to wake throughout the night.
Start Meditation (or Yoga)
Long before you’re stressing about your upcoming nuptials, add meditation to your daily routine. It helps you sleep by training the brain to focus on the present moment (where there’s less stress) rather than the past or future. Over time, this process reduces the heart rate and blood pressure. The longer and more often you do meditation, the bigger the benefits so start practicing now.
For those dealing with physical tension along with their mental stress, yoga is a great option too. Yoga often involves meditative breathing along with its poses so you’re using both body and mind for relaxation. It can also reduce the amount of stress-related proteins in the blood.
Create a Routine in Advance
Bedtime routines train the body how to respond to sleep hormones while simultaneously prepping the brain to release them. Your body needs time to learn the routine so start preparing several weeks before your wedding so the routine feels like second nature the night before the big day. A good routine can include anything calming and relaxing. A warm bath, cup of milk, quiet music, or simply reading a book are a good place to start. Go with what works for you and then be as consistent as possible.
Do a Little Extra Pampering
Take time to pamper yourself. Get a massage, buy new luxurious sheets, or treat yourself to a new set of pyjamas. Those may seem like small acts, but the happiness (and comfort) they bring can give a mood boost before bed. Once you’re in bed, get extra comfortable. Bring in a second or third pillow for better support and make it feel like you’re getting a gentle bedtime hug. Make it so comfortable that you can’t help but look forward to bedtime.
Use Sleep Reinforcements
Sometimes when it gets tough to sleep, you need to bring in reinforcements. Melatonin, a natural sleep hormone, can be bought over the counter and used to boost your sleep cycle. Aromatherapy is another gentle sleep aid worth considering. Lavender in conjunction with healthy sleep habits improves sleep quality while research studies have found that jasmine can be as powerful as valium when it comes to relaxation and sleep quality.
Sleep makes you look and feel more vibrant. More importantly, it gives you emotional stability to truly enjoy your wedding day. This day will only happen once, and with sleep, you can be fully focused on your future spouse.
About the Author:
Amy Highland is a sleep expert at SleepHelp.org. Her preferred research topics are health and wellness, so Amy's a regular reader of Scientific American and Nature. She loves taking naps during thunderstorms and cuddling up with a blanket, book, and cats.