The Beginners Guide To (Getting Started 101)
Your Mattress and Your Sleep
In a 2009 study, 59 healthy males and females slept for 28 nights straight on their usual mattresses, then the next 28 nights on brand new mattresses with medium firmness. They were told to assess their stress levels based on things like racing thoughts, nervousness, trembling, etc. 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. Then put a slipcover to prevent them from going from the mattress to your sheets and pillows onward. Definitely, you need to clean the mattress itself as well, which can be done most effectively with the use of a vacuum.
There’s no hard and fast definition of what makes a soft or firm mattress. A 200-pound person may, for instance, think that a mattress is soft, and someone half his weight might say it is 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 also minor evidence proving that the firmness of a mattress affects 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 there are more reasons to make your way to the store. If the quality of your sleep is just not how it was at home, you should probably make an investment, especially if you seem to get better sleep somewhere else.
According to the Experts
Experts are one in saying that the bedroom must be reserved for sleep and sex – otherwise, your mind will begin to expect work emails as soon as you hit the hay, which only makes it harder to get good sleep. Electronics definitely have no place with you on your mattress, most especially their blue light, which is scientifically proven to be disruptive to the brain’s natural bedtime activities. So if you’re determined to improve your sleep, there’s no better way to begin than with your own habits.