This ‘Sleeptember’, it’s time to reevaluate your sleep routine; are you doing everything possible to ensure you get a good night’s sleep? With expert tips and advice (plus a guide to the best beds on the market), we tell you how to sleep better…
Are you getting enough sleep?
Sleep, sleep, sleep… it’s almost become a yawn-worthy topic, so much is it talked and written about. Hardly any of us are getting enough, what we are getting isn’t good quality and the long-term effects could be more damaging than we know. But rather than patronise you and say ‘have another cup of chamomile tea and a hot bath’, we’ve got some expert advice on perfecting your sleep routine.
The team at Harrison Spinks came up with this list of considerations to help you drift off to sleep the moment your head hits the pillow…
Top Sleep Tips
‘One of the main factors that can affect your sleep is the support you get from your mattress. The general rule is that the more springs a mattress has, the better the comfort and support it offers – correct support while sleeping is essential in keeping your spine in perfect alignment.’
‘In order to sleep soundly, you need to ensure your bedroom is as peaceful and relaxing as possible. Start by making sure your room is completely dark – a good quality blackout blind is ideal for this. Your bedroom shouldn’t be treated as an extension of the rest of your house, it should simply be a place for sleeping, so that means no watching TV or surfing the web.
‘Adding personal touches to a bedroom can help it feel more peaceful and restful. Choosing soft, neutral tones will help you de-stress, and adding photographs, plants and ornaments will create a relaxing space. Burning essential oils in a bedroom can also help with relaxation. Chamomile and lavender oils are naturally calming and will help you drift off into a deep sleep.’
‘Make sure you purchase the biggest mattress that will fit in your bedroom comfortably. Sleeping on a mattress that is too small results in less room and an increased likelihood of disturbances between you and your partner.’
‘A common sleep depriving factor is being too hot or too cold and regulating body temperature while you sleep can be difficult. Your room should be kept at an ambient temperature of between 16 and 18 degrees, while your mattress should be breathable too.
‘Due to their excellent temperature regulating properties and luxurious comfort, you should try and choose a mattress featuring natural fillings. Whether you’re usually too warm or too cold in bed, natural fillings such as wool, cotton, flax and mohair will help to regulate your body’s temperature, keeping you comfortable throughout the year.’
‘Indulging in too much alcohol, especially just before you go to bed, can disrupt your sleep. Alcohol may help you drift off initially, but will interrupt your sleep patterns later on in the night.’
Relaxing bedtime routine
Establishing a relaxing routine before going to bed can help you drift off. Having a warm bath, listening to quiet, chilled-out music and doing some gentle yoga will help relax the mind and body, and in turn will assist you in getting a more restful night’s sleep.
Consider partner’s needs
‘If you and your partner have different support requirements, look for a dual tension mattress or even a zip and link system. A zip and link mattress is two separate mattresses zipped together to create one big mattress. This caters for differing body weights as each half can be made in different tensions. Likewise, dual tension mattresses enable you to specify different levels of firmness on each half of the same mattress.’
‘Regular, moderate exercise including swimming, walking or gentle jogging can help relieve some of the day’s stresses and tensions, which can contribute to poor sleep. Vigorous exercise, such as running or going to the gym, too close to bedtime can have a negative effect and keep you awake.’
‘Technology is a big no-no in the bedroom. Having access to televisions, computers, phones and tablets can be far too stimulating at bedtime, leading to you struggling to switch-off.’
‘Your diet can have a big influence on whether or not you get a good night’s sleep, and simple changes to your eating habits can have a positive effect on your sleeping pattern. A glass of warm milk has been traditionally heralded as helping with sleep, but other foods, including chicken, pumpkin seeds, peanuts and beans, can also help you drift off.’