We all need a good night's sleep, it is just as important as food, water and air. While we can certainly go without for a time, we are not at our optimum health with any of these elements. And we need to the purest of these things to be well, to be healthy. Breathing dirty, polluted air can lead to health issues, just as drinking polluted water and polluted food. Getting enough healthy sleep is just as important, and bad, restless sleep can be just as detrimental in the long term to your overall health.
Some of you reading this are well aware of the effects of not getting proper rest. If you are one of these people, you know how frustrating it can be to not get a full night's sleep. There can be many reasons why you are not getting a full night's sleep, or uninterrupted sleep, but one common and easily remedied one is tossing and turning.
Whether you toss and turn or your sleeping partner does, tossing and turning is simply your body trying to get comfortable on your mattress and/or your bedding. A mattress that is too hard or too soft, one that causes pressure or bedding that makes you uncomfortable are all factors that can lead to you tossing and turning. I have met many people who believe that tossing and turning is just a normal part of sleeping, and I am here to tell you that excessive tossing and turning is not something you must live with.
First, let's take a look at your mattress: Is it a traditional mattress with metal coils? Metal coils push your body's weight, turned into energy by gravity, and pushes it back towards you, causing pressure, pain and diminished blood flow. Only one of those affects will lead to you consistently moving around, tossing and turning, during the night, trying to find a comfortable position. Do you sleep with a partner? The most common coil mattresses transfer motion between partners, leading to, you guessed it, your partner moving because they feel you moving. Partner motion will bring the other Sleeper out of a deep sleep, enough to disrupt REM sleep. It is a virtual tug of war all night with both partners struggling to get rest. A good quality, breathable memory foam mattress without metal coils such as the memory foam mattresses from Bed In A Box, available at Nest Bedding.
Is your mattress looking more like the Grand Canyon than a mattress? Trying to squeeze the last years out of a worn out mattress, one with obvious indentations, will cost you far more than the few dollars you may save in purchasing a good quality, supportive mattress. That body impression or divot in your mattress means your back is following the curve of your worn mattress, leading to improper support, which leads to aches and pains, and tossing and turning. Some people will try to prolong their worn mattress by adding a topper, however, all this will do is make your bed softer and still have a divot. A topper will merely follow whatever surface it is sitting atop.
Next, let's look at your bedding. Yes, your bedding can contribute to tossing and turning as well. Ever wake up with your covers kicked off? Your body in REM sleep is perfectly still. When you are uncomfortable, it has to come out of REM sleep, and consciously rectify the discomfort. In this case, if you are too hot, you will instinctively kick off the covers. Polyester blankets and sheets, down and feather comforters, too many blankets and electric blankets can all contribute to tossing and turning by making your body overheat. These materials are not breathable. Replace your polyester or polyester blended sheets with high quality affordable USA made organic cotton sheets. And ditch the old down and feather comforter for a lightweight yet insulating wool comforter.
These tips will reduce your tossing and turning and help you get the rest your body craves.
- January 31, 2014
- Joe Alexander