How to beat insomnia – top tips from Sealy UK
Insomnia – great film, great song, but not much fun when you are experiencing it yourself! Lack of sleep, or just poor quality sleep, can be disastrous for your physical and mental health; not to mention your relationships.
The goal is to achieve deep sleep – where the brain switches off so the body can repair itself from the day’s indulgences or any illnesses or ailments. It repairs muscles, boosts the immune system, metabolism and, crucially, brain power, helping you retain information you have learnt that day.
Insomnia has even been linked to cancer, strokes, weight gain, impotence and heart disease. But anything can cause insomnia, from mental trauma to a change in medication or simply a change in environment. So what can you do to avoid it?
Neil Robinson from sleep experts Sealy UK has the following top tips to help you get a good night’s rest.
1) Stick to your sleep patterns
It’s important to try to maintain a sleeping routine. Routine is vital when it comes to your body clock – and yes that means on weekends too!
2) Get your duvet right
It’s highly important to get your head around duvet tog ratings – the higher the tog rating, the warmer the duvet will be. In the summer months, a 2.5-7 tog is perfect, whereas a 13.5-15 tog duvet is better in winter.
3) Be drink aware
We all know that drinking too much caffeine before bed can cause a restless night’s sleep, but alcohol also poses a problem. Alcohol rapidly reduces REM sleep, also known as ‘Rapid Eye Movement’. REM is one of the five stages of sleep we experience in a night, and often the one where we have our most intense dreams. It is characterised by rapid movements of the eyes and temporary paralysis of the muscles and plays a crucial role in physical health. During this time blood flow decreases from the brain, allowing the body and mind to rest and recover.
In a poll, 70 per cent of Brits admitted they could function better at work if they slept better, so it’s worth cutting out the mid-eek drink in favour for something a little more sleep-friendly!
4) Get fit and healthy
Take advantage of your free time by getting outside and doing some exercise. This will keep your energy levels high and will ensure you feel tired come bedtime. Maintaining a good diet is also important in helping your overall energy levels, so make sure you enjoy a diet rich in energy boosting foods such as fruits, vegetables and nuts, as well as plenty of water.
5) Become a morning person
With 76% of UK residents recognising that their personal life would benefit from a better quality of sleep, why not adopt a ‘seize the day’ attitude in the mornings? Many people are kept awake at night consumed with busy thoughts, but by preparing yourself for the next day the night before, you will enjoy a stress-free sleep and avoid that early morning panic. Write a list of all your morning jobs, get your work bag ready, pack your lunch – all in preparation for that inevitable morning rush.
6) Avoid napping
This may seem like an obvious tip, but try to avoid naps during the day to enjoy a fuller night’s sleep. If you do feel the need to get some shut-eye, make sure you limit it to just 10-20 minutes.
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