Sleeping Positions And Your Health

177840546-smallHow you sleep at night can play a big role in your overall health. While getting enough sleep is very important, how you sleep also plays a big factor. Different sleeping positions can affect your back, neck and spine as well as snoring, insomnia and sleep apnea. While sleeping on your back with your arms at your side is generally considered to be the best position for your spine health, back sleepers tend to snore more and sleep apnea is strongly associated with this position.

Common sleeping positions:

Fetal position: Sleeping curled up in to a ball with your knees drawn up and your head tilted might be comfortable, but it can unfavorable for your back and neck and restrict deep breathing.

On your back, arms down: This is thought to be the best position for your spine and neck although it is also associated with snoring and sleep apnea.

On your back, arms up: Also known as the “starfish”, this position is also good for your back and may also help to prevent wrinkles and breakouts. While it can also result in snoring, having your arms up can put pressure on the nerves in your shoulders leading to pain.

Face down: While sleeping on your stomach can improve digestion, sleeping face down forces you to tilt your head to the side to breath and put a lot of strain on your neck and back as the curve of the spine is not supported.

On side: When sleeping on your side with your arms down, the spine is best supported in its natural curve. The can help reduce back pain and sleep apnea. The downside? Sleeping on your side can contribute to skin aging and wrinkles due to gravity.

Pillow-Supplemented: Regardless of which sleeping position you prefer, it’s likely you’ll get a better night’s rest with less pain by supplementing your body with a pillow. Back sleepers can put a small pillow under the arch of their spine, side sleepers and place a pillow between the knees and stomach sleepers can place a pillow under their hips.


Sleeping With a Full Moon

The lunar cycle has been related to a broad range of mysterious events, from increased crime to hospital admissions. Words such as “moonstruck” and “lunatic” have evolved from stories like the lycanthrope, the figure who turned into a werewolf at full Moon. Even outside such folktales, scientist have suspected that the Moon’s phases may affect sleep patterns more than we think.

The next time you can’t sleep, take a peek outside and see if there is a full moon casting beams. Research has showed that our internal biological clock, ticks away according to the moon’s cycle. Dr. Silvia Frey out of Switzerland conducted an experiment that showed melatonin levels, total sleep time and delta sleep time were at their lowest levels when the moon was full. It was also indicated that it took the longest time to fall asleep and reach REM sleep during a full moon.

Like every other species on Earth, humans have evolved with a particular set of astronomical cycles such as: day, night, full moon, daylight-savings time to which our circadian systems adapt. Because of this research, there are helpful strategies that have been developed for individuals who are prone to circadian sleep disorders.

Since it is said that the human body biologically struggles to fall and stay asleep when the moon is full, people can be more particular about their comfort during these times. Creating a relaxing ritual like reading, dressing your bed comfortably, or listening to soothing music can help. One of the best ways to fall asleep comfortably is having a clean, cozy and durable matress. At Mattresses For Less you can choose from a wide variety of trusted name-brand mattresses to contribute to the best nights sleep you’ve ever had. You may even be able to sleep through the wolves howling at the moon.

What is Restless Leg Syndrome?

What is it?
Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) is a nervous system disorder that gives you the urge to move your legs. This urge comes from uncomfortable sensations that many have described as tingling, creeping, crawling and tightening. These sensations can range anywhere from irritating to extremely painful. RLS is commonly under diagnosed or misdiagnosed, most likely due to the fact that there is no real RLS “test”. Physicians must rely on a patients history and symptoms.
What are the symptoms?
Symptoms tend to happen the most at the end of the day aka when you want to go to sleep, however, that is not the ONLY time they can happen.  Don’t go undiagnosed because your symptoms don’t occur at night. Symptoms can appear at any time during prolonged sitting or laying down. This means if you get these sensations while sitting in a desk at work, school, in the car or airplane, you are most likely experience RLS. Restless Leg Syndrome comes in all shapes and sizes, some describe it as a slightly irritating sensation while others describe it as intense and painful. The fact is, it’s real and causes sleep deprivation and stress.
Who is affected?
Restless Leg Syndrome can affect anyone at any age, it does not discriminate. However, there are a few statistics that might help you get a better idea of how many people are affected.
  • 5-10% of the entire population suffers from RLS
  • Women are twice as likely as men to develop RLS
  • As many as 25% of pregnant women develop RLS during pregnancy. Symptoms usually disappear within a few months after pregnancy.
What kind of treatment is there?
Physicians will prescribe certain medications that have been known to decrease symptoms but unfortunately no one medication has been proven to cure RLS in all individuals.  Some lifestyle changes have also been shown to decrease symptoms, which include:
  • Decreased consumption of caffeine, alcohol and tobacco
  • Iron, folate and magnesium supplementation
  • Exercise
Losing sleep because your partner won’t stop fidgeting? Restless Leg Syndrome not only effects the person suffering from the disorder, but it also affects their partners.  In order to ensure that you both avoid sleep deprivation, sleep on a memory foam mattress! This will allow your partner to fidget and move around without disrupting your sleep. Another benefit of a memory foam mattress is that it conforms to your body and allows the muscles to relax in their most natural position.  This has been shown to decrease symptoms. If you want to help reduce your partners symptoms massaging their legs is highly recommended. This helps take the mind of the uncomfortable sensations and relax the muscles, allowing you to get a good nights rest!