Any parent can vouch for the importance of a good night’s sleep. In those early newborn days, you probably thought it was a good day if you managed to put the kettle on in your sleep-deprived state.
But even when the kids are no longer crying through the night, a good sleep can often still be elusive to many, leaving us feeling tired and groggy.
So here we suggest solutions to three common sleep problems, so the next time that alarm goes off – or your child jumps on your head, whatever comes first – you feel refreshed and ready for the day ahead…
PROBLEM 1: I CAN’T GET OFF TO SLEEP
“No matter how tired I am, when I go to bed I find it really hard to switch off and sleep. How can I prevent this?”
You know how you have a bedtime routine for the kids? That shouldn’t stop just because you’re a grown-up. Even the routine shouldn’t differ too wildly from what you do with your little ones: have a nice warm bath, change into your pyjamas, and read a bedtime story – although your book of choice may differ somewhat!
Sticking to this routine will send messages to your brain that it’s time to start winding down and prepare for sleep. Reading is a much better bedtime activity than watching TV or checking your phone as the light, sound and movements will over-stimulate your brain when it’s supposed to be winding down.
Also turn your bedroom into a relaxed haven. It should be a no-chaos zone, with soft, clean sheets and soothing scents proven to help aid sleep – try washing your sheets with a capful of Lenor Unstoppables Dreams, which has notes of lavender and vanilla, and plugging in an Ambi-Pur Sleep Serenity 3volution in Warm Milk & Honey.
If you still find everything, from the shopping list to summer holiday plans, is buzzing around your head as soon as you shut your eyes, sit up again and write down what’s on your mind onto a notepad. Just getting it down on paper goes a long way to getting it out of your brain.
For more tips, check out our article, 11 steps to the best night’s sleep ever.
PROBLEM 2: I WAKE UP GROGGY
“I sleep well, but I still wake up feeling groggy – what’s going on?”
This is likely to do with where you are at in your sleep cycle when your alarm goes off. We alternate between four levels of sleep, ranging from a light sleep, when we are easily woken, to deep sleep, when we dream.
If you are woken up mid-dream you will probably feel disorientated and groggy, as if you have been ripped from your sleep. This is because you were in one of the deepest stages of sleep. But if your alarm goes off when you are in a light sleep, you will awaken more easily and feel more refreshed.
Try downloading a sleep app that has been designed to track your sleep patterns. The alarm will then go off when you are in a light stage of sleep – but within a time period set by you, so it won’t wake you in the middle of the night or make you late for work!
Also there is such a thing as too much sleep – scientists reckon than an average of seven hours a night is ideal. The best way to regulate your sleep is go to bed and wake up around the same time every day.
PROBLEM 3: I TOSS AND TURN
“My husband says I always toss and turn in my sleep. Does this mean I’m not getting a good-quality snooze?”
It’s entirely natural to move around quite a lot in your sleep. In fact, people move an average of 70 times during the night. It’s good for you, too, preventing circulatory disorders and muscle cramps.
We also wake up an average of 28 times a night. It’s just we wake up for such a short time, we don’t even remember it the next morning.
To make sure you’re comfortable during your period, use Always Infinity Night for protection against any leaks, plus the thin, smart foam material is flexible and moulds to your body, so it will stay secure no matter how much you move around. So, as long as you feel like you’re getting a good sleep, you needn’t worry. It actually sounds like your husband is the one who is struggling to sleep if he is aware of your movements – perhaps get him to give the above a read!
What’s your secret to a great night’s sleep? Let us know in the comments section below.