Your Mattress and Your Sleep
A decade back, research was conducted on 59 healthy men and women who slept on their old mattresses for 28 consecutive nights, and another 28 straight nights on new, medium-firm mattresses. They were asked to check on their stress levels depending on such factors as worrying, nervousness, headaches, and more. This new setup caused “a remarkable reduction in stress,” says the study, probably because of the resulting increase in sleep quality and decrease in pain that came with the firmer beds.
Mattress allergies have something to do with dust mites at least. Those minute creatures live off of your naturally shed dead skin cells, tons of which can be found on and in your mattress. As many as 20 million Americans couldn’t stand these nasty bugs, particularly those with respiratory conditions such as asthma. Regular washing of sheets and pillowcases in hot water helps to remove dust mites. After washing, put a slipcover to help keep the bugs from traveling from the mattress to the linens and pillows. Definitely, you need to clean the mattress itself as well, which can be done most effectively with the use of a vacuum.
Degree of Firmness
There’s no standard definition of the softness or firmness of a mattress. For a 300-pound person, for example, a mattress may come as soft, while for someone who weighs half lighter, it may come as firm. You may hear terms such as “ultra-plush,” but to know what exactly that means, you have to actually lie on the mattress. There’s little proof as well that a mattress’ firmness will have an impact on your sleep. It all boils down to comfort. That said, be sure to spend no less than 20 minutes “test-driving” a mattress before you take it home.
If you notice a spring or a hole with stuffing sticking out, it’s obvious you need to get a new mattress. But that’s not all of the reasons to should consider going to the store. If you’re just not sleeping as well as you used to at home, it could be time for an investment, especially if you think you sleep better far from home.
What the Experts Say
Experts say bedrooms must be used strictly for two purposes – sleep and sex – or your brain will not stop thinking about work even when you’re in bed, and that only makes good sleep harder than ever to achieve each passing night. Electronics surely must not mix with you and your mattress, especially the blue light they emit, which can throw your brain’s natural bedtime mechanism in disarray, keeping sleep at bay. So if you’re determined to improve your sleep, there’s no better way to begin than with your own habits.