Expert sleep consultants from Snooze answer some of the most commonly asked questions about sleeping problems and how to prevent a restless night's sleep.
1. My partner snores loudly, frequently disturbing my sleep. What can I do to prevent this?
Commonly, snoring is caused by poor sleep posture, excess weight or physical abnormalities of the throat. These narrow the airway and restrict breathing, resulting in snoring.
If your partner is a mild snorer, suggest that they try:
* sleeping on their side;
* adding an extra pillow to elevate the head or trying a contoured pillow;
* weight reduction.
Your sleep is important to your general health and wellbeing – if these suggestions don’t make a difference, make a trip to your doctor.
2. What is sleep debt and can I repay it?
Sleep debt is the difference between the amount of sleep your body requires and the amount you actually get.
It builds up over long periods of time and research shows that short-term effects include a foggy brain, impaired vision and driving, and trouble retaining information. Long-term effects include obesity and heart disease.
Sleep debt can be repaid though it won't happen overnight. Allowing yourself an extra hour or two per night over a period of time will enable your body to settle itself back into a natural sleep pattern. You’ll know you’ve repaid your sleep debt when you no longer feel tired during the day.
3. Is it possible to sleep too much?
People who sleep more than nine hours per night report similar sleep-related problems to people who sleep less that seven hours per night
Common problems experienced include:
* Difficulty falling asleep;
* Disturbed sleep;
* Awaking too early;
* Not feeling rested upon awakening; and
* Feeling tired during the day.
Research shows the ideal amount of sleep for adults is between seven and eight hours.
4. When should I replace my pillow and what should I look for in a new pillow?
Snooze experts believe that choosing the right pillow is just as important as having the right bed. The right pillow increases your chances of a restful night’s sleep by minimizing pressure on your head and body resulting in less movement throughout the night
If your pillow is more than eight years old, or is discoloured, losing its filling or deteriorating then it’s time to buy a new one.
Things to take into account when looking for a new pillow include:
* Specific health concerns;
* Preferred sleeping position,
* Size of your frame;
* Whether you suffer from neck pain; and
* If you sleep hot or cold.
5. How can I ensure my children develop good sleeping habits?
Establishing a bedtime routine early on is key to unlocking a great night’s sleep for your kids. Routine activity makes them feel safe and secure as they know what to expect. Snooze’s Sleep Consultants recommend the following dos and don’ts:
* Choose a regular bedtime and stick to it, make it clear to your child that bedtime is coming and begin to wind-down activity;
* Allow your kids to take ownership of getting ready for bed by choosing their pyjamas and which story they would like to read;
* Make sure everything is completed in the same order each night – warm bath, brushing teeth, pyjamas on, into bed, reading story, lights out and so on;
* Establish a feeling of comfort and security by tucking your child in and saying goodnight;
* Ask older children to choose a regular bedtime that allows for enough sleep depending on their developmental stage.
* Include television or computers in the bedtime routine;
* Allow the bedtime routine to be interrupted or changed frequently;
* Stay with your child until they fall asleep, or lie in the bed with them; and
* Don’t stress if there is a disruption – as long as interruptions aren’t frequent, there won’t be too many knock-on effects.
For more about the soothing range at Snooze go to: www.snooze.com.au Or head into your local Snooze store to find out if you are sleeping on the right mattress.