A Good Night’s Sleep Is No Longer Just A DreamPosted on: 30 April 2009 by Gareth Hargreaves
Expert back advice and sleep specialists Back Advice Info offers you some top tips to give you sweet dreams at night.
A recent study found that as many as 30% of the adult population are affected by sleep problems, with the over 65s recognised as particularly badly disrupted.
In fact, according to a study conducted by the University of Leeds, roughly half of the UK’s mature population complain of insomnia.
Along with the physical changes that occur with age, changes to sleep patterns are part of the normal ageing process. But it’s especially important to ensure that we get sufficient sleep as we age, because sleep is known to improve concentration and memory formation, as well as allowing the body to repair any cell damage that has occurred during the day, and refreshing the immune system which helps to prevent disease.
Experts have also suggested that a lack of sleep might affect the way the brain works, leading to poor judgement.
To help Britons get their recommended seven or eight hours sleep every night, the specialist back advice and sleep website, www.backadvice.info are offering practical advice and top tips to help you drift soundly off as soon as your head hits the pillow this evening.
Top Tips For Sound Sleeping
- Reading Light – despite everything you’ve been told about reading before bedtime, try to avoid reading and watching TV in bed just before you turn off the light as it can confuse the brain, awakening your senses and leaving you feeling restless. Instead, leading sleep expert, Dr Neil Stanley, of Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital, advises that the key to a good night’s sleep lies in winding down effectively before bedtime, so if you love a good book, try reading elsewhere in the hours before you head off to bed.
- Stick To A Routine – try to go to bed, and – as far as possible – wake up at the same time every day. The routine will help to give your body a guide as to what is normal and what is not.
- Keep On Moving – make sure you get some exercise such as walking every day, but try to avoid vigorous exercise within three hours of bedtime. Exercising shortly before you turn in for the night has been found to interrupt your sleep-wake cycle and rob you of the restorative deep sleep that your body is craving. Try ensuring that you reserve some time for exercise between the morning and late afternoon, giving yourself plenty of time to unwind before hitting the hay.
- Sunny Side Up – exposure to natural light stimulates the body’s production of melatonin, a hormone that helps to regulate the sleep cycle, so try to spend a little time outside when possible. When it comes to bedtime, make sure you create a contrast between day and night in the room you sleep in. Light triggers the production of chemicals which signal to your body that it should be awake, so ensuring that your bedroom is dark at night will help you to fall asleep faster and for longer.
- Drink Up – try to avoid drinking caffeinated drinks such as tea and coffee in the evening and possibly during the afternoon if necessary, as these drinks are stimulants and could prevent you from sleeping at night. Try to avoid late night tipples too – drinking alcohol late at night could lead to premature waking. Give your body at least one hour to digest each drink before heading to bed.
- Don’t Smoke – and if you do smoke, don’t just before bedtime! Not only is nicotine a stimulant, but a craving cigarettes early in the morning may force an early rise.
- Sleep Easy – ensure that you assess whether your present mattress and pillow provide the necessary support for a good night’s sleep, and remember that you should change your mattress every 10 years – after all, you do spend at least a third of your life sleeping!
For more information about getting a good night’s sleep, visit www.backadvice.info.
Grab A Free Sleep Guide
To help those experiencing sleep problems, TEMPUR, the manufacturer of pressure relieving pillows and mattresses, has teamed-up with respected sleep expert, Dr Chris Idzikowski – Director of the Edinburgh Sleep Centre to create ‘The Good Sleep Guide’, an easy-to-follow leaflet to help you get the perfect night’s sleep.
‘The Good Sleep Guide’ is full of simple tips and tricks to help you get the perfect night’s rest. With ways to develop the right bedtime routine including which foods will trigger sleep and which you should avoid, to creating the ideal sleeping environment.
For free copies of ‘The Good Sleep Guide’ for you, your friends or family, or for more information about TEMPUR products, contact TEMPUR on 08000 111081 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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