How to sleep better: tips and advice for a great night’s sleep
As a regular reader of the site, you should be aware that getting to sleep isn’t as simple as your head hitting the pillow and drifting off – there are many factors that can affect your ability to get the perfect night’s sleep.
Because we believe that sleep should be something that everyone enjoys and gets plenty of, we recently got clinical psychologist, Dr. Nicola L. Barclay of the Sleep and Circadian Neuroscience Institute (SNCi), University Of Oxford, to give us some insights.
TEMPUR takes a look at the key findings from Dr. Barclay’s research …
What is sleep and how does it work?
Sleep occurs in cycles of rapid eye movement (REM) and non-rapid eye movement, which is a vital function for energy conservation, learning & memory consolidation, restoration of the body and to help remove toxins from the brain.
Sleeping between six to eight hours per night is ideal, as any more or less than this can, in extreme cases, lead to a host of physical and mental health problems like heart disease and diabetes.
Thankfully, your body naturally regulates this by releasing a chemical called melatonin into the body, which makes us feel sleepy at various points in the day.
Helping the process using sleep hygiene
External factors such as diet and light exposure can affect the body’s ability to produce melatonin.
Cherries, walnuts and even cheese are just some examples of food that contain nutrients that are converted into melatonin when digested, and could help with regular sleeping cycles.
Light on the other hand is known to suppress the production of melatonin, and could cause sleepless nights. This is why using electronic devices close to your bedtime is not recommended.
There are also important environmental factors to consider which could aid your ability to sleep. These include a comfortable sleeping temperature (between 20 – 220C), a good mattress and pillows to support the spine and keeping a regular bedtime, so as not to confuse the body’s natural body clock.
TEMPUR offers four ranges of mattresses , each with a unique feel and a variety of features. They all feature the unique TEMPUR material, which conforms to the weight and warmth of your body to offer pressure relief and personalised support.
If you are having trouble sleeping, consult with your doctor who will be able to offer advice to your specific situation.
In the worst cases of sleep deprivation, a doctor can prescribe medication or suggest different types of therapies that can help improve sleeping patterns.