Tips for Better Sleep

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How you feel while you are awake can heavily depend on how well you slept the night before. Similarly, your daily routine can also have an impact on the quality of rest you get at night. It is important to experiment with different sleep strategies to see what works best for you.

– Sticking with a sleep schedule, even on weekends, is one of the most important strategies for getting a good night’s rest. Being consistent reinforces you body’s sleep-wake cycle and helps promote better sleep at night.

– It is important to avoid naps if you have regular trouble falling asleep at night. If you must nap, keep it brief (20 minutes or less) and do it early in the day. Any shut eye within eight hours of your bedtime can sabotage a good night’s sleep.

– Regular exercise has been shown to improve sleep quality as long as you don’t work out too close to bedtime. Aim to finish any vigorous exercise 3-4 hours before you go to sleep.

– Avoid heavy foods and big meals late in the day and finish snacks at least an hour before bed.200434115-001

– Managing your stress plays a big factor in getting a good night’s rest. When you have too much on your mind, your sleep is likely to suffer. Before bed, write down what is on your mind and then set it aside for tomorrow.

– Soothing “white noise” can mask undesired distractions such as traffic noise or a partner’s snoring. Using a fan, air conditioner or white noise generator in the bedroom can help neutralize sounds that can keep you up at night.

– The bedroom should be reserved strictly for sleep and intimacy. It is best to take work materials, computers and televisions out of the sleeping environment and avoid activities that cause anxiety and prevent you from falling asleep.

Why We Yawn

Yawning seems like a natural occurrence that only takes place before bed and waking up. However, as we get older we start to pay attention to the contagious phenomenon, and notice that it is a little more complex than just a sleepy-time mechanism.

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Yawning is an involuntary action that causes the mouth to open wide and breathe in deeply, which actually puts more body parts to work than you may think. When you inhale, you are filling your lungs with air, your abdominal muscles then flex, and your diaphragm is pushed down.

While yawning is associated with drowsiness, your heart-rate actually rises as much as 30 percent during this “exercise” which can be considered a sign of heightened state-of-excitement. If you have ever paid attention during a workout, run or strenuous activity, you might have noticed that you begin to yawn occasionally. It could have been a side-effect of fatigue or the need for rest, but on the contrary, it could have also been a lack of oxygen.

A yawn to the body, is like a radiator to a vehicle. The body induces yawning to provide more oxygen to the brain, and to remove a buildup of carbon dioxide in the lungs by stretching the jaw and increasing blood flow in the neck, face and head. When air is breathed into the mouth, it removes hot blood from the brain and introduces cool air.

So ya caught a case of the yawns…

If you are in a conversation with an individual and he casually yawns, you probably start to wonder if he is bored with the conversation or… oh… here it comes….You yawn as well and fall victim to the contagious yawn, and pretty soon it is like a domino effect on every one that walks by or entertains your conversation.

Studies show that you don’t have to physically see someone yawn for you to yawn back. You can hear or even read about it, and chances are, you have probably yawned at least once since you have been reading this. The contagious yawn is said to be associated with the same part of the brain that deal with empathy, thus linking it to an individuals ability to understand and connect with others’ emotional state. Infectious yawning has been also been observed in chimpanzees and dogs. Speaking of dogs, don’t miss out on your chance to win a queen size mattress! Be sure to enter the Bed Hog Contest by submitting a snapshot of your pooch hogging your bed for a chance to win a free queen-size mattress from Mattresses For Less.

 

Improve Your Quality of Sleep With Exercise

When tossing and turning becomes habitual and keeps you up at night, there are a few options you have before running to the medicine cabinet or the nearest drug store. Reevaluating your current habits and changing your behavioral ways will improve your sleep patterns, starting with exercise.

Believe it or not, tossing and turning is not a form of exercise. By regularly making exercise a priority during the day, you can lead yourself down the right path to increasing the quality of your sleeping habits.

The benefits of exercise and an active lifestyle are endless: Stress and anxiety reduction, lower risk of many life-threatening diseases, productivity and increasing the quality of your days. I am sure you are aware the profit you gain when you get enough sleep, and you are also familiar with the treacherous toll your body takes when don’t receive enough rest.

Research has proven that many insomnia-diagnosed individuals saw a drastic improvement in sleeping patterns just after a few weeks of regular exercise than those who remained sedentary. Those who noticed changes also experienced less anxiety and stress throughout the day.

To maximize the beneficial effects, it is important to properly time your exercise and sleep routine. A good workout can increase productivity, increase alertness, speed up your metabolism and energize you for the day ahead. However, performing activity less than 3 hours before hitting the hay can prevent a good night’s sleep. Exercising before bed interferes with your body temperature; body temperature rises during vigorous activity and takes as long as 6 hours to drop. Because cooler body temperatures are correlated with sleep onset, it is important to let your body cool off before you think about hopping into bed.

If one part of the body system undergoes some sort of deprivation, whether that be of food, energy, sleep, water… you’re likely to see the effects in other areas of your life. Sleep, nutrition and exercise are all linked. If the body lacks nourishment, it will lack performance during activity which effects whether you lose or gain weight, which then ties in to how you function on a daily basis.

Getting quality sleep each night is vital to operate with intention each day. To reap the benefits of a dreamy reward, commit to a healthy and active lifestyle and catch more zzz’s. Also, make sure your place of rest is a cozy one, all the way down to your mattress. If you are unsure if you are sleeping on the appropriate mattress to increase the nature of your slumber, come by Mattresses For Less where one of their friendly and knowledgable mattress experts can help find the perfect match for you. With thousands of trusted name-brands to chose from, and shipping available, you can make tonights sleep the best yet, with the start of a new lifestyle and a new mattress.

 

 

How Much Is Too Much of a Good Thing? (Sleep)

We often think of sleep in terms of minutes or hours, instead of considering its quality. As the weekend approaches, and the amount of work days dwindle, getting more sleep is usually the first thing on our mind. You may have caught yourself saying things like, “I finally get to catch up on some sleep,” or maybe more perhaps, “I may sleep the day away!” Most of us are highly aware or have experienced the dangerous side-effects of not getting enough shut-eye. However, studies find that getting too much sleep can have similar effects and even be hazardous to your health. So the question is, “How much is too much of this good thing we call sleep?”

There is no “magic number” to put on the duration of a fair nights sleep, however research has shown the body needs approximately 6-8 hours each sleep shift. On the nights some find it necessary to “catch up on sleep” for 9+hours, they may feel exhausted upon awakening. There is the great possibility of waking up feeling foggy, and worse off than running off of 6 hours if sleep. This terrible condition that has us running for the nearest coffee shop is also know as sleep drunkenness. It plays a trick on the mind that has one hovering between a state of slumber and being awake. Not only can too much sleep hold you back from reaching full production potential throughout the day, but it can also impair attention, alertness, concentration, problem solving, and include serious health risks.

If you are among the many Americans in today’s society that can “sleep the day away”, you may want to pay close attention before hitting that snooze button again. Sleeping in every so often does not present serious health risks, however, habitually oversleeping could potentially be a factor in an underlying health problem that you may be unaware of. Over 18 million Americans have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, low thyroid, depression, diabetes, heart disease, and hypersomnia. These may be factors that contribute to your daily drowsiness and low energy levels, and is important that you seek immediate professional care if you feel that any of these may pertain to you.

A good night’s rest is vital to your well-being based on the countless negative side-effects it can potentially have on your health. Regardless of the cause of your sleep habits, there are a few things that will help you reap the benefits of achieving your slumber potential, such as: Creating a sleep schedule, going to bed and waking up at the same time, exercise, and making your bedroom a space that invites a pleasant night’s rest, starting with finding the right mattes that will provide the comfort you need. At Mattresses For Less you can choose from their endless selection of premium mattresses, and let your body and mind understand what quality sleep feels like again!