Tips to getting better sleep on vacation

November 6, 2014

Travellers often have trouble falling asleep in new places, even seasoned ones. Use these helpful tips to get a good night's sleep during your trip without medication.

Tips to getting better sleep on vacation

1. Try natural sleep aids

Lavender sachets can be tucked into your luggage before travelling. Upon reaching your destination, tuck them under your pillows to help you relax more easily after a long day of travel. Chamomile is another option. It's the number one herbal remedy to aid travellers in falling asleep. Chamomile flavoured tea can be sipped right before bedtime to help your body unwind before turning out the lights. Peppermint tea can also calm down anxieties and help you feel refreshed. Both teas are naturally caffeine-free, so they won't keep you up at night.

2. Block out distractions

Hotel rooms usually have two layers of drapes, so be sure to draw both closed to darken the room to the most and ensure a better night's rest. Crack the window open a bit for fresh air, and turn off the air conditioner or set the heating dial low. An eye mask and ear plugs will block out any sensory distractions, so you can get to sleep faster and stay asleep longer no matter the circumstances.

3. Trick your body

One of the quickest ways to fall asleep in unfamiliar surroundings is to trick your body into doing so. When you keep your body still, it helps trick your mind into thinking that you're entering the first phase of sleep. When your body is at rest, your mind will follow.

4. Choose your drinks carefully

Keep your body hydrated while avoiding drinks that contain any amount of caffeine. Avoid regular tea, energy drinks and hot chocolate, as these fluids may contain caffeine as well. According to Health Canada, even small amounts of caffeine can cause insomnia when you're already in a distracting environment.

5. Stay calm

Don't engage in any strenuous physical activities at least four hours before bedtime, and try to avoid spicy dishes at dinner. Skip on action-adventure television shows and put your electronic devices away. Lay back to read the classics instead.

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