I never cease to be amazed at the number of gadgets, gizmos, supplements and remedies that are on the market to help people to get a good night’s sleep.
I get it, I truly do. When you’re struggling to sleep, you can feel desperate (I know, I’ve been there!), so spending a bit of cash on a new lavender candle or some homoeopathic tablets can feel like the right thing to do.
Sometimes just feeling like we’re being proactive about our sleeplessness can feel like we’re helping ourselves. But other times, it doesn’t matter what we try, it just doesn’t help.
If we’re not getting the quality and quantity of sleep we need, we can’t possibly hope to function properly. We’re affected mentally, physically and emotionally. Although, if it’s a chronic or long-term issue, we often start to create coping mechanisms, and can sometimes fool ourselves into thinking that we’re doing ok, even though we’re really not.
Not just one thing keeping you awake
Of course, there can be multiple reasons why we don’t sleep well, it could be stress, hormones or lifestyle (to name just a few).
But an often overlooked cause is that our bedroom environment isn’t conducive to sleep, including our bed and pillows simply not being comfortable or supportive enough for us, meaning we don’t sleep well.
So not only do we not get a good night’s sleep because we spent the night avoiding the spring that digs into our hip, or feeling like we needed to re-plump our pillow every couple of hours, but we can also find the next day we’re not only fighting the fog of tiredness but also potentially suffering from aches and pains from sleeping awkwardly. Argh!
And of course, the longer it goes on, the worse it can become. Research suggests that the more sleep deprived we are, the lower our sensitivity to pain. And also, as sleep is our opportunity for our body to rest and rejuvenate if we’re not giving it ample time to do its thing, those aches and pains are more likely to linger for longer as our body doesn’t have the opportunity to heal itself.
The most common complaints are sore necks and lower back pain, which makes sense if our bodies (specifically our spine) aren’t supported when we are laid down for a prolonged period of time. If our beds aren’t comfortable, then it’s not surprising it’s going to be difficult to get the shut-eye we need!
Ideally, our spines want to be in a neutral position when we sleep, similar to when we are stood up, although everyone has their favourite position to sleep in – some prefer sleeping on their side, some on their back and others on their stomach. Regardless of your favoured position, ensuring your spine is as straight as it can be is going to help ensure you get the best night’s rest possible. And the best way to do that is to ensure your pillows and mattress are up to the job.
A change is as good as a rest?
Do you find that you sleep better when you sleep in a different bed? Maybe on holiday or at a friend’s house? Or even in a different room at home? If the answer’s yes, you may well have the answer right there!
Sleeping on an old mattress doesn’t just cause aches and pains, it can also cause problems with allergies (often making pre-existing allergies worse too) and dust mites too (yuck!).
Did you know that mattresses generally need to be changed about every 6 – 8 years? And as for pillows, well, they only last a year or two! I certainly hadn’t realised that until I started working as a sleep practitioner.
Of course, it depends on the type of mattress and pillow, so those are just rules of thumb. But It can feel like quite a hefty investment, buying a new mattress and pillows so frequently. And yes, I agree, but, when you think that you’re going to be spending a third of your day laid on them, well, it sort of makes sense, doesn’t it?
Help is at hand!
I moved house earlier this year and needed to buy new beds for me and my kids. I’ll admit, I was overwhelmed with all the choices out there! There’s so much variety!
I was lucky enough to stumble upon Origin Mattress. Their website was easy to navigate and their products looked good, so I thought I would give them a whirl. And I’m so pleased I did!
The mattresses were really easy to unpack (although as they are vacuum packed, the boxes were pretty heavy, so I needed a hand to carry my mattress upstairs).
We chose their hybrid mattress with their own ‘Hexagrid technology’ and a comfortable top layer which come with a 200-day trial (yes, you read that right!), free delivery and returns and a 15 year warranty! It also has more support in the middle third of the mattress, ensuring our backs are supported, regardless of the position we sleep in, as well as cooling particles to help keep your body the perfect temperature for sleep.
It probably won’t surprise you to hear that both me and my girls sleep pretty well most of the time, but we all agree, that since having these mattresses, our sleep has been even better!
If you think it’s time to upgrade your own mattress and would like to order an Origin Mattress yourself, then I would like to share a 10% discount with you. Just head over to their website and use voucher code ‘DRSAM10’.
Because, after all, Sleep is not a luxury…