Breathe your way to better sleep

We tried and tested this easy technique for better sleep, and it worked!

Do you struggle to fall asleep most nights? It could be because your sleep patterns are irregular, or because your mind isn’t always ready to switch off when your body’s ready for sleep. We researched some healthy ways to remedy this and found an easy breathing technique developed by Dr Andrew Weil.

After trying it out for a few nights, we found that it actually works really well as a way to calm your mind and fall asleep quicker.

How much sleep are our online readers getting?

We ran a poll asking “How much sleep are you getting?” on our home page and here are the results!

  • Less than 3 hours a night: 1%
  • 4-6 hours a night: 49%
  • 6-8 hours a night: 44%
  • More than 9 hours a night: 4%

READ MORE: THE 5 PILLARS OF SELF-CARE

The 4-7-8 breath

Inspired by the breathing practices used in yoga, Dr Weil developed this easy technique:

  1. Let out a big breath of air through your mouth making a ‘whoosh’ sound.
  2. Closing your mouth, take a deep breath in through your nose for four seconds.
  3. Hold that breath in for seven seconds.
  4. Open your mouth and let out a big ‘whoosh’ of air for eight seconds.
  5. The steps above make up one breath. Repeat the steps three more times (for four breaths) and you should feel more calm, relaxed, and ready to drift to sleep.

You might feel a little silly making the whoosh sounds, but just go with it. It takes a few practice runs, but after a few nights you’ll have mastered this technique.

READ MORE: 8 SIMPLE SLEEP REMEDIES

Feature: Candice Curtis

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