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How well you sleep at night can affect your mood, productivity and health.

Some people drift off as soon as their head hits the pillow, but for others it’s more  difficult – especially during winter, an expert has revealed.

Clinical psychologist and sleep specialist, Dr Michael Brues, better known as the ‘Sleep Doctor’ is on a mission to help the world improve their lifestyles with a good night’s rest.

Dr Brues posts clips under his TikTok handle @thesleepdoctor, sharing suggestions that can help you sleep.

I’m a psychologist… follow the ‘three 15s’ method to ensure you have a great night’s sleep

He reveals that he called the method 'the three 15's to do in the morning - 15 deep breaths that help wake up your respiratory system, 15 ounces of water and 15 minutes of sunshine

The sleep doctor explained that you need to get sunlight in the morning time – people don’t know it but Vitamin D is a circadian pacemaker, so being outside in the sun can help

Appearing on The Today Show last year, Dr Brues explained the process he swears by during the colder months to get a good night’s sleep – the ‘three 15’s method’.

He starts by explaining: ‘During the winter months there’s a couple of things that can happen to sleep.

‘One thing we know of specifically is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) – because there’s not enough light, people are not feeling as well, kind of like the winter blues.

‘But from a sleeping perspective, here’s what we know – because we don’t have as much light our circadian rhythms can be a bit off and that can pose a problem’.

He revealed that we can follow a few key rules to ensure better sleep at night – but we need to do them in the morning. 

The sleep doctor explained that you need to get sunlight in the morning time as Vitamin D is a circadian pacemaker, so being outside in the sun can help. 

How well you sleep at night can affect a host of other factors in your life - including your mood, productivity and health (stock image)

How well you sleep at night can affect a host of other factors in your life – including your mood, productivity and health (stock image)

The circadian rhythm is the body’s internally driven 24 hour clock that runs on a daily cycle to regulate vital functions such as sleep, appetite and metabolism – when it starts to get darker earlier, it can get confusing for our bodies.

Dr Brues said: ‘You only need about fifteen minutes believe it or not. That actually helps with your sleep. I know it sounds strange doing something in the morning time that’s going to be helpful for sleep but trust me.

‘If you start to prepare for sleep at the beginning of your day, you’re going to have a great night’.

‘The thing I tell people is when you wake up in the morning, I have a little bit of a routine – you can do this for kids, you can do this for adults’.

He explains that he called the method ‘the three 15’s to do in the morning – 15 deep breaths that help wake up your respiratory system, 15 ounces of water and 15 minutes of sunshine.

Dr Brues stresses that it should be water, not caffeine, because sleeping itself is a dehydrated event. 

He added: ‘We don’t want to caffeinate, we want to hydrate first. ‘We lose almost a full litre of water from both the humidity in our breath and our sweat and the oils that come through out skin, so people need to go to bed fairly well hydrated.

‘But don’t drink a big glass of water before bed because then you’ll have to go to the bathroom all night long’.

He reveals that in the morning time you should go over to the window if it’s a little too cold to be outside, but if you can bear to be outside, that’s ‘gonna be the best’ for your sleep.



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