Our friends over at Chemist 4 U shared their findings with us of a study that they conducted recently, involving 2000 Brits and their sleep woes. This study revealed the six main elementsthat tend to keep us awake at night. Nowadays, grown-ups are sleeping for only about 6.5 hours on average, which equals more than a whole night’s sleep every single week that we are missing out on. According to the study, an overwhelming 83% of the British public feel that they don’t get the sleep they need, with just one in ten waking up recuperated every morning.
“Sleep plays an important role in both bodily and brain functions, and a lack of it can cause stress, a lack of productivity and change in mood – as well as more serious health conditions. As a nation, we’re simply not getting enough [sleep]” commented Shamir Patel, pharmacist at Chemist 4 U. Which is worrying.
So what are the six biggest disturbances leading us to under-sleep?
As is to be expected, stress was found to be the main culprit – with 1 in 4 Brits claiming stress to be the main source of a restless night's sleep. To combat this, we suggest taking some time to de-stress before bed with a good book, a warm bath and writing the next day's to-do list down (so you get those worries out of your head and onto a piece of paper). Also, putting one's phone away an hour or so before bedtime, definitely helps to stop those racing and anxious thoughts from being triggered by emails and social media updates.
Next on the list is noise disturbances, which is often due to living in a very busy, noisy and big city (hey, London - here's looking at you)! If this sounds like your kind of predicament, make sure to give your senses a break every now and then. Turn the TV off so its not blaring 24/7, schedule breaks between appointments and meetings, and head out to green spaces whenever you can. And at night, if the sirens are screaming and the neighbour's music is pumping, invest in a solid set of earplugs or a sound machine to keep the noises at bay.
Third up, there is the issue of health (struggling to breathe or feeling physically uncomfortable can definitely keep one up at night), closely followed by a partner causing disruption. The Chemist 4 U study found that more than half of people admitted they find it frustrating when their partner snores, take up too much room in the bed, steal the covers or breathe on them during the night. A tenth of couples even admitted to sleeping in separate beds every night to combat the issue (which you can read more about here in the post we wrote for the Myza blog recently). A viable option for sure if you have lots of space in the house to spread out. If not? Invest in an eye mask and earplugs so you can hit the hay undisturbed.
A good ol' cuppa caffeine came in fifth place on the list of common reasons for peeps staying awake at night (for obvious reasons, too much caffeine close to bedtime will keep you up, so don't do it) and last but not least - children. To all the moms out there - they will grow up and you will sleep again someday.
The great thing about these findings is to see how easily one can address and lessen the impact of these major sleep disturbances with just a few lifestyle tweaks. We will keep you updated on how to go about it, so make sure to follow along on the blog, newsletters and social.
Thanks to Chemist 4 U for supplying the findings and this handy infographic.