In this week’s ask the experts, we’ve teamed up with sleep experts to answer the most common sleep related questions. These simple but powerful tips will help shave time off tossing and turning, and make more time for some serious shut eye.
QUESTION: How can I get a good night’s sleep?
ANSWER: Unless you’re suffering from a serious sleep disorder, says Thomas Shearer, general manager of the Denver Mattress Retail Division, you can get a better night’s rest by improving your sleep habits and creating a better sleep environment.
QUESTION: How do I create a better sleep environment?
ANSWER: Keep your bedroom dark and quiet. Mask disturbing noise with a fan or humidifier. Most people sleep better in a slightly cooler room, so set your thermostat accordingly. Choose the right mattress: Denver Mattress offers a patented Strength-Resistance Test, a free service that helps you determine which mattress provides the proper spine alignment for your body. Also, plan to replace your mattress every five to seven years to accommodate your body’s changing needs. Replace pillows once a year, especially if you have allergies.
QUESTION: What sleep habits will help?
ANSWER: Set your “body clock” by going to bed and getting up at the same time every day. Expose yourself to bright light (preferably sunlight) as soon as you can after rising. Don’t exercise within three hours of retiring, but do exercise. Develop a relaxing bedtime routine, which might include quiet reading, a warm bath and meditation
Watch what you EAT:
• Cut out caffeine. Including coffee, tea, caffeinated sodas and chocolate.
• Avoid alcohol. It might make you fall asleep faster, but it can reduce sleep quality.
• Watch the clock. Don’t eat a big meal within two hours of going to bed.
• Ditch the rich. Avoid heavy foods as bedtime snacks.
• Snack for sacking out. Choose bedtime snacks that contain the amino acid tryptophan or the sleep-inducing hormones melatonin and seratonin: warm milk, half a turkey sandwich, a banana, oatmeal or almonds.
Getting a good night’s sleep can sometimes be a challenge, but the benefits go beyond nighttime and translate into your everyday activities. Try out a and begin giving yourself the sleep you deserve.