If you read our previous post on getting enough sleep, you know that you need to get your eight hours to be well. More than just the time you spend in bed, however, you need to ensure that you are getting quality sleep. If you want to be healthy and wake up refreshed and ready for another day, you need to make sure that you respect your body clock and that you have a proper sleeping space. Quality sleep can mean the difference between true rest and just going through the motions.
Just as you need at least eight hours of sleep to be well, you also need to make sure that this sleep is not disrupted. Your circadian rhythm, or your body clock, is more complex than you might think, and has a greater impact on overall well-being than you may have imagined. This internal system is responsible for regulating your feelings of sleepiness to tell you when you need to rest and when you are good to go. This system communicates with the brain to interpret signals sent according to ambient light levels. When we ignore these impulses – like not taking a nap after a good lunch – we fight against our bodies’ natural need for quality sleep. Not giving the body what it needs causes it to get stressed and work overtime to try and compensate, or to simply not have enough to function well. This means decreased energy and increased health problems than can last for much longer than those few hours of sleep that you thought were inconsequential.
To start getting quality sleep, do an evaluation of your lifestyle. You should be able to say that you have a regular sleeping schedule and an exercise routine. At least try to get to bed and wake up at relatively the same time each day, and do some form of physical activity, even if it’s just desk exercises. When you wake up, get out for a bit of sun as this sends a clear and strong signal that it’s time to get active. This gives you a boost of energy for the day and also resets your circadian rhythm so that you will get sleepy at the right time that night. When you are preparing for bed, avoid using electronic devices as their waves are known to disrupt sleep. Read instead, or listen to music played from at least 3 metres away. You can also form other sleep time habits like a hot bath, warm milk, or anything that relaxes you.
Next, look at your sleeping space and evaluate its conduciveness to sleep. Sights and sounds are the worst offenders to a good night’s sleep. If your room is too bright before sleep, switch to lower wattage bulbs or get a dim lamp to use an hour or two before your sleep time. Your electronic devices should also be turned off during this pre-sleep period. If your bedroom has windows or others are using lights while you sleep, you can use an eye mask to block out the light. Control ambient noises as much as possible as well. If you can’t find a quiet place to sleep, consider investing in a good pair of earplugs. You can also try a white noise machine if this works better for you.
Reducing your stress levels is another very important way to ensure that you are getting good sleep. More than just having a relaxing routine before bedtime, you should have a comfortable sleeping space, starting with your bed. Your alarm clock can be a primary source of stress if you are already having trouble sleeping. Make sure that you are not able to see the time if you should wake up in the middle of the night. Knowing how little sleep you have gotten so far can cause you anxiety that will make it difficult for you to fall back asleep.
Clean sheets, a properly weighted blanket and a good pillow go a long way to promoting quality sleep. You should feel comfortable when you get into bed, and not be too hot or cold during sleep. Your blanket should keep your body at a good temperature, so do some experimentation to find the best one. The best pillow to use is one that holds your head snugly while supporting your neck and shoulders. A lot of sleep problems are caused by discomfort in these parts that cause poor circulation and muscle strain.
Our Cool Gel Memory Foam Pillow is designed to cradle the head and provide a perfect resting nook for the curves of the neck and shoulders to give you the contour you need. The shape even aids in spine alignment to reduce fatigue and general strain on the body. The cool gel surface absorbs ambient temperature and equalizes excess body heat. The pillow is hypoallergenic as well, and comes with a removable and washable bamboo pillow cover. Our Organic Bamboo Pillow is made of 100% natural bamboo fibres that are well-known for their health benefits. Bamboo fibre is naturally cooling, softer than cotton, and has organic antibiotic properties. The pillow is naturally hypoallergenic and so relieves asthma and allergy symptoms such as hay fever, dust mites, and other airborne allergens. It is also designed to give full support to the head, neck and shoulders to give relief from insomnia, neck pain, migraines, TMJ and even snoring. It is also designed to be firm while maintaining its natural softness and provides proper support to realign the spine during sleep.
Happy Holidays from The Bamboo Pillow!
To celebrate quality sleep, we are offering an additional 20% off your Bamboo Pillow purchases! Just type in the coupon code CHRISTMAS20 at checkout! If you place your order between December 1st and 20th, you can also avail of our free gift wrapping service!