In a recent study, it was discovered that, on average, the UK population spends around 8 hours sleeping per night. The chart below shows the average time a person spends sleeping in minutes for each of the countries listed. We're just slightly above average at 503 and 27 minutes behind the French!
Based on these statistics, we can estimate that this is roughly one third of our lives spent asleep! With such a significant amount of time spent in bed each night, it would make perfect sense to ensure that we make our night time experience as pleasant as possible.
Here are five handy hints to help you get the most out of your bedtime
1. Stick to a regular sleep pattern:
By trying to go to bed at more or less the same time each night, you can train your body to feel sleepy at the right time each evening.
2. Cut down on caffeine and alcohol:
Too many cups of tea and coffee or a quick nightcap before bed can stimulate the mind and our alertness, making it more difficult to fall asleep. Instead of caffeine-filled beverages, why not try a milky drink like hot chocolate to help you relax and wind down in the evening.
3. Create a relaxing bedtime routine:
Instead of blaring out loud music or television programmes before you go to bed, try to do something more calming. Have a hot bath with scented oils or listen to some peaceful music. By combining this calmer activity with a milky drink and a cosy pair of pyjamas, you should start to feel more relaxed and, as a result, find it much easier to fall asleep at night.
4. Keep an eye on the temperature:
If your bedroom is too hot or too cold it can have a negative impact on your quality of sleep. Try to keep a window open or turn the thermostat up a little higher to ensure that you achieve a comfortable room temperature to suit you.
and most importantly of all...
5. Don’t scrimp on comfortable bedding:
Having a comfy bed is vitally important for getting a good night’s sleep. Don’t be kept awake by a scratchy duvet or a thin pillow. If your mattress is too hard then it’s time to upgrade to some better quality bedding. Your bedding should ideally provide your body with plenty of support (especially if you suffer from neck or back pain) and be pleasurable to sleep in each night. Choosing a high quality bed set over the cheap and cheerful option will reward you with extra comfort and a more satisfying sleep. After all, with such a large chunk of our time spent in bed, we deserve to make the experience as comfortable as possible.