Jonathan Stevens Blog

The Jonathan Stevens blog is where you can come for quick tips, videos, and articles to make your mattress buying experience a dream.

Wrap Up For Better Sleep: The Blanket is the Key


It isn’t just babies that like to be swaddled for a good night’s sleep.  The proper blanket can make a difference in adult sleep too! Especially when you’re sleeping away from home, the right blanket can make the difference between a relaxing vacation or a sleepless night.



Whether you’re looking for the right choice to help you snooze in the passenger seat or on an airplane, a blanket is important because it helps your body regulate its temperature. It’s natural for your temperature to drop during sleep, and hit its lowest point during the early morning hours. If you’re too hot, or if you choose a heavy blanket, your sleep can be interrupted because it prevents the natural temperature dip from occurring. Similarly, when you’re too cold, you can have a hard time falling asleep..


Choosing the Right Blanket

When you’re away from home, it’s much more difficult to get the perfect temperature for sleeping. That’s why your blanket is your best friend, just like it may have been when you were a child. Choose a fabric that’s just the right size to cover your body, in a washable and breathable fabric.  Throws in cashmere or chenille might be great for throwing on while you watch television in the living room, but they aren’t ideal for a travel buddy. Cotton is a great choice because it’s easy to clean and is usually free from allergens.


Breaking in Your Blanket

Make sure to break in your blanket, just like you would a new pair of shoes.  If your body begins to associate that blanket with sleep, it will create a conditioned response in your brain to help you fall asleep faster. So make sure to start sleeping with your new blanket for several weeks prior to your vacation to help build the needed association between the blanket and sleeping.

If you have the perfect blanket and you’re still losing sleep, it may be time to consider a new mattress. Check out our mattress finder to start shopping for the right one for you today!


Has Your Sleep Gone to the Dogs?

  sleep tips sleep trouble sleeping with pets
Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Your pet may be known as man’s best friend, but what sort of impact does your feline or canine friend have on your sleep?

According to a Mayo Clinic study, having a pet in the bedroom can actually help you sleep better, because it provides a sense of security. However, this study was limited to adults who only lived with one pet. The authors of the study found that having multiple animals in your bedroom increased the probability that your sleep would be disrupted.

This study also recommends having a dog not sleep directly in bed with you—rather, in a pet bed or crate next to your bed. This maintains the emotional connection between you and your animal without having a “bed hog” taking up room in your sleep space.

According to a study by the American Pet Products Association, 2% of small dogs, 41% of medium-sized dogs, and 32% of large dogs still do sleep with their owners. For feline friends, the number is even higher: 62% of cats sleep with their adult owners, and another 13% of cats sleep with children.

Having your pet in your bed isn’t necessarily the cat’s pajamas. If you suffer from allergies or asthma, sleeping in the same bed with your pet can definitely impact your sleep. Using a HEPA filter in your bedroom is a quick way to alleviate some of your symptoms. Also, some diseases can be transferred from pets onto humans, especially those who share sleep space, according to the Center for Disease Control.

If you’ve chosen to let your pet come into your bed and now regret your decision, prepare for a few sleepless nights while you re-acclimate your animal to a new nightly slumber space. This is especially true for cats, who can have very negative reactions to being displaced from a place that used to be their territory. Experts recommend providing your cat with toys or putting a cat condo by a window with a light outside so kitty can scope out the bugs and moths. Dogs are much more adaptable to this type of change, especially if you make it a game where they can be rewarded for proper behavior.  

If you (or your pet) think it’s time for a new mattress to improve your sleep, check out our mattress finder online, or stop into a Jonathan Stevens store to find the best choice for you!  

Sadly, we can’t let Fido try out the mattresses in the store. He’s just going to have to trust your judgment!


You Can Sleep Off Your Next Cold

  sleep trouble Sleep Health sleep tips
Monday, January 29, 2018

With the cold winter months in full swing, this brings the cold and flu season everyone is dreading. Did you know that sleep is actually one of the best medications for fighting off a cold?

A good night’s sleep boosts your immune system, making it easier for your body to fight off a virus. If do manage to get sick, sleep can also help your body bounce back quicker. A full night of rest maximizes your body’s infection fighting antibodies that you naturally produce.

A stuffy nose, fever, or sore throat can sometimes make it harder for you to fall asleep, but sleep is vital in a quick recovery! Here are some simple strategies to manage your cold symptoms so you can get better faster.

One of our favorite remedies is tea with honey. Not only can the steam from the hot beverage clear up your stuffy nose, the honey can also soothe your sore throat. Honey is also a great way to quickly suppress a cough! Having some tea with honey is one of our favorite ways to knock out multiple symptoms at once.

If that doesn’t do the trick, a steam shower or humidifier may help by for clearing your airways.  Steam showers will provide relaxation, while a humidifier acts as a double threat that adds moisture to the air while also soothing your dry sinuses.

If all of these tricks are still not helping you fall asleep, try giving yourself a break. Read a few pages of your favorite book, listen to some soothing music, or sip another cup of tea. Give yourself some time to de-stress, and try falling asleep again in another few minutes.

So gear up for the cold and flu season, and make sure to get some shut-eye!

Are you still having trouble being able to sleep off your cold? It may be time to look into a new mattress to help aide in a better night’s sleep!


Holiday Eating Tips for Better Sleep

  Holiday sleep trouble sleep tips
Thursday, November 30, 2017

The holiday season is officially among us, including Christmas feasts to New Year's celebrations. It is no secret that this season brings a surplus of food and drinks, which makes it easy to eat and drink your day away.

While most people are aware that the holiday’s can put a strain on their waistline, many do not realize how this season can also affect your quality of sleep. Heavy meals can make it difficult to get a good night’s sleep, so here are a few of our best tips to keep in mind this holiday season.

Do Not “Save” Calories

A common myth around heavy meals is to starve yourself during that day if you are planning on having a big meal later. This actually has the opposite intended effect. Showing up to a meal with an empty stomach can actually make you eat more and lead to an crash later on. The best way to prepare yourself for a heavy meal is to eat light, scheduled meals early on so that you will have greater control over your food intake later.

Portion Size

While it may be tempting to grab everything on the table once dinner is served, try to keep your portion size down. Large portions make it harder for your body to digest, which leads to a rougher night’s sleep later on. According to an expert nutrition coach, an average meal takes between one to three hours to properly digest, but a large meal can take between eight and twelve hours. Do your future sleepy self a favor, and focus on your portion size this holiday season.

Timing is Key

In addition to preparing your body and keeping your portion size down, timing of your meal is one of the most important factors when eating a big meal. Because it takes so much additional time for a heavy meal to digest, you’ll want to eat early. If you eat too late, your body will keep you up as it digests. To ensure a quality night of sleep, plan ahead and make sure your holiday feasts are early!

With these tips, your holiday celebrations will be fun, tasty, and promote a better night’s sleep!

Looking for that right holiday present for a loved one? Try a Jonathan Stevens mattress, custom made just to their liking!


A Messy Room Can Affect Your Sleep

  sleep tips sleep trouble Sleep Health
Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Did you know that you spend around ⅓ of your life in the bedroom? Your bedroom should make you feel relaxed, at home, and should be the most comfortable room in your house. A messy bedroom however, can actually keep you up at night according to recent studies.  

Your brain naturally wants to clean up clutter, which means that a messy room will subconsciously work against your natural instincts and cause anxiety. A study by St. Lawrence University proved that those with more clutter in the bedroom had more sleep disturbances throughout the night as opposed to those with less clutter.

The study goes on to explain that the more clutter in your space, the less functional and comfortable your bedroom is. A messy bedroom is considered “unusable” in the study, which therefore can increase cognitive dysfunction, depression, and stress as your sleep health also worsens.

Not only does clutter make it harder to fall asleep at night, but it can make you feel restless the next day. Cleaning a messy bedroom will not only relieve the tension in your mind, but it will allow you to take advantage of your bedroom’s intended benefits.  

Keeping your room tidy is important in order to get a good night’s sleep, but some other tips to keep your sleep environment healthy are:

  • Stay off your phone or other technology before bed.
  • Keep the room dark and cool.
  • Use a fan or other device to help with sound elimination.
  • Eat and/or drink lightly before bed.

Above all, the environment you sleep in can either positively or negatively affect your sleep. A mattress that is too old or not working properly can also lead to restless nights, so be sure to check out the Jonathan Stevens Mattress Co mattress selector here!


Pleasant Smells and Sleep: What’s the Connection?

  sleep tips health sleep trouble Sleep Health
Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Have you ever been exhausted all day, practically counting down the minutes until you can go to bed, and then the second your head hits the pillow you find yourself having trouble falling asleep? Sleep is something that is often easier said than done, with your stresses of the day lingering when trying to fall asleep. However, a great relaxation technique to help combat sleep problems is a pleasant smell.

A scent you like is extremely effective at promoting relaxation and helping to aid sleep. In fact, not only is aromatherapy becoming increasingly more popular, but it has been recognized by the Alliance of International Aromatherapists as having both psychological and physical benefits.

The great part about aromatherapy is that there are endless combinations of scents, meaning that there is a scent for everyone. A scent that one person may absolutely love, another person may hate, but it is easy to test out what scent works for you. Some of the most popular scents that have been linked to relaxation and better sleep are: lavender, vanilla, jasmine, chamomile, sandalwood, clary, clary sage, rose, and valerian.

Essential oils in a diffuser is an easy way to incorporate a pleasant smell into your nighttime routine, but there are also a lot of other methods you can try. Some of our favorite picks are:

  • Creams and lotions
  • Soaps
  • Scent sticks
  • Pillow sprays
  • Bath oils
  • Body washes
  • Candles
  • Aromatic spritzers
  • Scented pillows
  • Scented mattress and pillow protectors
  • Scented laundry detergents

Not only can a pleasant smell help with relaxation and sleep, but a bedtime scent can actually make your bedroom more inviting. Pleasant scents are linked to better moods, which will translate into a better sleep for you that night. There is nothing better than a good night’s sleep so, on your next sleep, try incorporating aromatherapy or another one of our picks!


The Sleep Texting Phenomenon

  sleep trouble sleep science
Tuesday, May 30, 2017
















When you hear the words sleep disorder, the first few conditions that come to your mind may be sleepwalking, insomnia, or even sleep apnea. However, most people do not think of texting while asleep as a sleep disorder at all, let alone a common sleep disorder. Sleep texting is growing to be more common among teenagers, and the phenomenon has been quickly finding itself more and more popular in the news.

Sleep texting means that a person is reading and responding to messages in their sleep with no recollection of this behavior come morning time. Experts say that this type of behavior stems from an unconscious phenomenon that young people cannot be apart from their phones. Texting while asleep is abnormal, unpredictable behavior, just like sleepwalking, that can take place during any time of the night.

People tend to think of sleep in two ways: either fully asleep or fully awake. However, there are several in-between stages of your sleep. In the case of sleep texting, the area of the brain that controls motor skills wakes up, while the area of the brain that controls memory does not. This explains how other sleep disorders work as well, and why we are able to walk, talk, or even text when we are still asleep.

An expert from the pediatric sleep disorders program at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota says that sleep texting is an automatic response, and even goes as far as to compare it to how a mother responds to her crying baby in the middle of the night. He says that a baby crying is a trigger that wakes mothers out of the deepest of sleeps, and that cell phone dings do that same thing to teenagers.

A doctor from Fairview Sleep Center estimates that over half of his young patients who have reported sleep problems have sleep texted. Studies show that one in three teenagers send more than 100 text messages a day, and four out of five teenagers admit to sleeping next to their phones.

The reliance on cell phones, especially among teenagers, has created this new sleep behavior that has been growing in numbers for several years. Because this disorder occurs in an unconscious state, it can be a difficult behavior to break. One of the only ways to reduce the likelihood of this disorder is to sleep with your phone far from your bed or bedside table, or better yet put your phone in another room.

Texting is a fun pastime, but more fun when you can actually remember the conversation.


New Seasons Brings New Sleep: How Weather Influences Sleep

Have you ever noticed that your sleep changes based on the weather?

Spring is finally here, which means warmer weather and a change in your sleep habits. The outside environment plays a huge role in our sleep routine. There are many factors that affect sleep that we can control, like a comfortable mattress for example, but weather is not one of them. Here are a few things that may change the way you sleep this spring.


Sunlight is one of the most noticeable changes in spring. The days get shorter in the fall and winter months, which means we often go to work before the sun even rises. Less exposure to the sunlight means less Vitamin D, which can negatively affect our sleep-wake cycles. Vitamin D produces serotonin, and when our body does not get enough seratonin, we experience greater daytime drowsiness. This then can make your body feel tired earlier than your usual bedtime. Luckily, spring brings more sunlight, and more sunlight means a better night’s sleep.


Another factor that changes in the spring season is temperature. After long winter months, a warmer spring temperature is much anticipated. However, studies prove that we actually sleep better in colder temperatures. Our body temperature naturally cools down as we prepare to sleep, and so cold air supports the body’s sleep environment.

Not only do we feel physically uncomfortable when the weather is hot and humid, but it is harder for our bodies to be comfortable during sleep as well. Warm air temperatures can prevent our bodies from settling into a deep sleep.


Whether you are a heavy or light sleeper, thunderstorms can interrupt your sleep. Although winter months typically bring a lot of snow, snow fall doesn’t tend to wake us up from our sleep like a thunderstorm does. It is common for people to enjoy falling asleep to a relaxing rainfall, but most people would agree a loud clap of thunder or a bright flash of lightning is not what they had in mind.


Springtime means that everything begins to bloom again after the cold winter months, but the new season also brings new allergies. Tree and grass pollen are common allergies in the spring, and often cause stuffy noses, itchy eyes, and sinus irritation. These symptoms may seem minor, but they can affect the quality of your sleep more than you would think.

While spring is a great break from the cold, the change in weather can cause some sleep issues. Some ways to help combat these issues and save our sleep routines are:

  • Try and go to bed at the same time every night
  • Keep the temperature in your house as cool as possible
  • Invest in a fan next to your bed
  • Stock up on allergy medicine to clear your sinuses
  • Use white noise to try and drown out storms

With these tips and the added sunlight during spring, you are on your way to a better night’s sleep!


Sleeping with Fall Allergies

  health sleep trouble
Thursday, October 27, 2016

Fall is officially in full force. Most us can tell it’s fall by the leaves changing colors, but for some of us, stuffy noses and congestion might be a better indication of the autumn air. From October to mid-November, fall allergies can peak with everything from mold to ragweed being at the highest levels of the year. If fall allergies are keeping you up at night, try a few of these tips for a better night’s rest.

Keep It Clean

Since nighttime temperatures are dropping, it might be time to take out your flannel sheets, but don’t forget to wash them first. Since dust can be a major trigger for fall allergy sufferers, it’s best to keep your bedding fresh and clean. Make sure to wash pillowcases, sheets and pajamas in warm water to remove any allergens. It may seem obvious, but once your laundry is washed, be sure to keep it in the dryer until it is completely dry. Damp bedding or pajamas can lead to mold or mildew, which can make allergies worse.

Once you’ve made sure your bedroom is clean, you have to make sure you are too! Even if you usually take showers in the morning, it might be a good idea to rinse off before bed. This can help remove allergens from your hair and skin, allowing you to rest easy. If you have congestion, a steamy shower can help with your stuffy nose too.

Sneaky Allergens

If you’re used to sleeping with pets in the bed, now might be the time to reconsider. Even though you might not be allergic to Fido himself, you could potentially be allergic to the pollen and ragweed from the yard that he collects on his fur. When pets bring allergens inside, it can make symptoms worse.  

Another place allergens can hide is in your furnace. Since you might be turning on the heat for the first time in months, it’s common for dust and other allergens to have settled in vents, which will blow into your living space. Be sure to change your furnace filter frequently and try to purchase allergy-friendly filters.

Managing Symptoms

Despite your best efforts, you still might have allergy symptoms before bed. If you’re taking allergy medication, try to avoid taking decongestants close to bedtime. Often, decongestants can have a stimulant effect that makes it hard to sleep. Other allergy medications like antihistamines can help with sleep, but can make you feel groggy in the morning. It’s best to work closely with your doctor to determine what medication will work best all day and night.


Fixing a Broken Sleep Schedule

  sleep tips health sleep trouble
Thursday, July 9, 2015

Did you know that if you make a resolution in August, you’re the most likely to stick to it? Sure, everyone seems to ditch the new years plans by February, but making a change at the end of summer can be easier to keep. Looking ahead to a busy fall and trying to squeeze the last bit of summer fun into your schedule, why not make a resolution to fix your sleep habits?

People often say that they wish they could get more sleep. We’ve previously discussed why that’s important, and how much sleep you really need to be bright and happy, but how do you go about fixing your sleep schedule when it’s broken? Let’s take a look at a few things to consider as you plan your new night and morning habits, and we’ll throw in some handy tips on how to reach that better night’s sleep.

Your Evening Routine

What you do at night before you go to bed can have a big effect on when you nod off and how well you sleep. Most people know how much caffeine will interrupt their night and when they should stop drinking it, but take a close look at your schedule if you’re finding it hard to settle down at night. Maybe that afternoon coffee is giving you some energy longer than you think.

Are there other foods and drinks to avoid in the evening? Yes. Many people find that spicy foods can affect their quality of sleep, or cause indigestion and discomfort that keep them awake. Alcohol is also a typical culprit of poor sleep.

Having a late dinner may interfere with your internal clock as well. With all of our commitments and not enough hours in the day, it’s easy to push dinner later into the evening with preparation and cook time, but try to keep dinner at a reasonable hour. Eating too late might make it harder to sleep, and you should allow time to digest food before lying flat in order to prevent indigestion and heartburn.

Do you find that you linger on the couch or in the kitchen when you know you should be in bed? Try this tip: set a bedtime alarm. A little reminder can go a long way. If it helps, put an alarm in your phone for 20 minutes before when you want to go to bed and use that time to wind down. Get tomorrow’s outfit ready, start the dishwasher, or do that last little bit of chores before heading to bed.

Go to bed at the same time every night. It’s easy to throw off several days of sleep by staying up entirely too late over the weekend, thinking you’ll just sleep later the next day. Don’t mess up your ability to fall asleep Sunday night by staying up too late Friday and Saturday.

Are you guilty of screen time in bed? Computers, TV, and other devices have been found to keep us up later and make it harder to fall asleep. Most experts agree that settling down with a book before bed is much better than looking at a device. Not much of a reader? Try listening to a book on tape or a podcast.

Your Morning Routine

It’s crucial to set yourself up for a good night with a consistent evening routine, but making sure you have a wakeful and consistent morning routine will also help you feel energized during the day.

First, check out your alarm clock. Does it do the job? Many people use their smartphones as an alarm, but dead batteries and volume settings can be an issue if you don’t set your alarm right. On the bright side, many smartphone alarm clock apps have built-in features to rouse the heavy sleeper. Are you difficult to wake up? Chronic snoozers can get an app that makes you solve puzzles and answer questions correctly before it shuts off, increasing the likelihood that you’ll wake up all the way and stop snoozing.

Speaking of snooze, multiple snoozes can mess up your day. Studies show that snoozing leads to feeling more tired later in the day, and getting an overall poorer quality of sleep. When you doze for a few minutes, your body starts getting into a new sleep cycle. Waking up repeatedly makes you groggy, which can be hard to shake. Some studies show that the grogginess from snoozing can last as long as 90 minutes! You’re better off going to bed a little sooner and then getting up at your first alarm.

As far as “regular” alarm clocks, the new versions are filled with options that are anything but traditional. Rolling alarm clocks are truly for the relentless snoozer who actually needs to be drawn out of bed in order to wake up. Other more gentle options emit light similar to the sun rising, and play soothing noises at an increasing volume to help you wake up slowly.

Get up at the same time every morning. Sleeping in on Saturday sure sounds like a good idea, but when you are not tired Sunday night because you’ve spent the weekend sleeping in and staying up late, you will not be happy!

Have you ever heard that you should avoid exercising at night because it can interfere with sleep? It turns out this may not be true. A study in Sleep Medicine based on the 2013 National Sleep Foundation Sleep in America Poll found that participants who exercised at night reported no negative effects on their quality of sleep. The catch? People who work out in the morning still report the best sleep. Adding a workout to your morning routine should help you sleep well and have energy all day. Whenever you can work out, try to get some exercise. There are big benefits to moderate exercise, including deeper sleep.

If you set yourself up for a restful night with a predictable evening and a cheery morning, but you’re still waking up tired, it might be time for a new mattress. Talk to your doctor if you’re concerned about your energy levels, but talk to Jonathan Stevens if your old mattress just isn’t cutting it. We’ll help you find the perfect mattress for your sleep oasis.

Better Sleeping for Two – Pregnancy and Sleep

  sleep tips health sleep trouble
Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Being pregnant can be a wonderful, magical time, but for most women it is not without at least a few symptoms that are less than magical. One notoriously irritating symptom is poor sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation's Women and Sleep poll, 78% of women report more disturbed sleep during pregnancy than at other times. Hormonal and physical changes and limitations can lead to sore hips, back pain, heartburn, restless legs, and insomnia. To get the best sleep while pregnant, here are a few tips to help.

Sleep on the left side and/or at an incline to help ease heartburn. According to the American Pregnancy Association:

Heartburn occurs when the valve between the stomach and the food pipe (esophagus) are unable to prevent the stomach acids from passing back into the esophagus. Pregnancy can increase the frequency of heartburn because the hormone progesterone causes the valve to relax. This allows the stomach acid to pass into the esophagus and irritate the lining.

Some women experience such severe heartburn that they resort to sleeping in a reclining chair. This is less than ideal for many reasons! Your doctor may have suggestions on how to treat your heartburn with prescriptions or over the counter medication, but sleeping on an incline and on your left side can also help stomach acid stay down and give you some better Z’s. Also, avoid spicy food, late meals, and midnight snacks which can make heartburn worse.

Use a body pillow. There are several brands of body pillow made specifically for pregnancy (including the popular Snoogle, and Boppy maternity pillows), but even a basic, long body pillow can help. The purpose is to ease hip and knee pain by going between your knees, under your belly to support your back, and to give you something to wrap your arms around if you prefer. You might find that this becomes a habit for comfortable sleep even after having the baby.

Keep cool. Hormonal changes can make a normally chilly sleeper into a total furnace regardless of the time of year. According to a 2010 study from the University of Pennsylvania, hot flashes affect more than half of pregnant women. The hormone to blame is primarily estrogen, which tends to soar during pregnancy.

To sleep cooler, wear lightweight materials and use a lighter blanket. Consider sleeping with a fan (some people also like the white noise a fan creates). If you’re normally a hot sleeper, visit a Jonathan Stevens store to try a Cool-Gel memory foam mattress specially made to give you a cooler night.

Pregnant and sleeping for twoTry not to worry. Pregnancy can cause a lot of stress as you consider the future and wonder how your family will adapt. Anxiety and depression are common during pregnancy, and should be discussed with your doctor. If you’re simply trying to wind down and stop worrying so that you can get better sleep, try getting your thoughts out. Write down your thoughts at night or talk to someone about your concerns. Discussing your worries with someone who understands can help ease your mind, and make the transition to sleep easier.

Treat pain. According to Parents magazine, you can also try a warm shower before lying down. Their expert, Kellie Flood-Shaffer, M.D., associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Texas Tech Health Sciences Center, in Lubbock, Texas, suggests treating nighttime aches with acetaminophen, which is considered safe during pregnancy.

The National Sleep Foundation also suggests:

  • Drinking lots of water, but not too much before bed
  • Getting screened for sleep apnea if snoring and paused breathing occur
  • Talking to your doctor if you believe you’re experiencing Restless Legs Syndrome
  • Get out of bed if you can’t sleep, do something relaxing, and try again
  • Use a nightlight in the bathroom instead of turning on the light, which can be too arousing and cause you to wake up more during bathroom breaks
  • Nap during the day if you need to, but make sure naps are early and brief so they don’t prevent nighttime sleep

Why is it especially important to get good sleep during pregnancy? Poor sleep has been linked to negative outcomes for birth and mood in pregnant and new mothers. A study found in the November 1 issue of the journal SLEEP (2011) found a link between risk for preterm birth in women who had sleep disruptions during their first and third trimesters. “This supports the growing evidence that poor sleep is an important risk factor for preterm birth,” said Michele Okun, PhD, assistant professor of psychiatry and psychology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Learn more from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Plus, University of California at San Francisco researchers found that women who slept fewer than 6 hours per night had longer labors and were 4.5 times more likely to have cesarean deliveries.

It’s important to get plenty of rest and to give some extra time for sleep, especially if you’re frequently getting up during the night. Relax and enjoy preparing for your family’s new addition!

Insomnia vs. Trouble Sleeping

  sleep tips health sleep trouble insomnia
Saturday, November 23, 2013

Everyone goes through a certain phase in life when they find it difficult to sleep at night. This can be attributed to emotional issues, physical problems and even mental complications. However, there is a major difference between the occasional bout of sleep deprivation and insomnia. For starters, sleep disorders that prevent you from sleeping at night but let you sleep in the afternoon or morning hours isn’t the same as insomnia. In fact, this situation is called phase deprivation and it is mostly because of habitual deprivation of sleep. On the other hand, insomnia is a condition of the body where it remains awake for days at a time disrupting life and your emotional balance. One simply doesn’t feel sleepy enough to sleep for days. It is a serious health complication than what one would think.

The Hazards Of Insomnia

To start with insomnia has similar effects on the central nervous system as drinking or being intoxicated. Reactions are slow, brain activities aren’t concentrated or mostly conscious because of which, the patient is in grave danger of accidents with heavy machinery, driving and even walking down the street.

How To Find Out Whether You Have Insomnia Or Trouble Sleeping

Unable to sleep through the night but you feel sleepy in the day, only to ultimately hit the bed flat for hours the next night? This is not insomnia but troubled sleeping. Such a person will eventually fall asleep at some point of time out of exhaustion, which the brain understands. Those who suffer from insomnia can stay awake for over days without the feeling of sleepiness. Yes, the body feels tired and agitated but the mind simply won’t shut off. If you haven’t slept for more than three days and still don’t feel the urge to go to sleep, it is insomnia unless you are seriously depressed or suffering from an emotional turmoil. Regardless, it is best to visit a therapist to get things sorted out.

Short Duration Sleep Deprivation

Even single day sleep deprivation is hazardous to your daily schedule. Not sleeping through the night makes the body weak in the day, your attitude cranky and you feel overall irritated. Chances of falling asleep while driving, or even standing, increase exponentially, which is a dangerous condition. It is best to get some shut eye, even for a few hours if this situation arises.

Can Changing The Mattress Help?

Jonathan Steven’s one of the premier mattress manufacturers, suggests changing mattresses to deal with sleep disorders. Memory foam mattress for instance helps induce sleep quicker as it contorts to the manner in which you sleep the most. If nothing else works, it won’t be a bad idea to give this a try.

Rapid Eye, Periodic Limb

  health sleep tips sleep trouble
Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A lesser known sleeping complication is PLMD or Periodic Limb Movement Disorder. While many are aware of sleep disorders such as snoring and phase disorder, PLMD – the jerking or cramping of legs, is experienced by many without any awareness. This is also the only movement disorder that happens during sleep. Moreover, it happens every 20 to 40 seconds in a rhythmic manner. PLMD is a sleeping disorder because it leads to daytime sleepiness and disrupts the normal sleep cycle.

This syndrome was first observed and described back in the 50s and was then called nocturnal myoclonus. This problem can appear at any age although like most sleep disorders it is most common in older folks.

PLMD and rapid eye movement occurs mostly due to some underlying medical condition but it can also happen as the primary condition although no known causes have yet been linked with it. Scientists believe that it is due to abnormalities in the nerve signals travelling between the brain and limbs although no proof has been given for this. Some secondary causes for PLMD include spinal cord tumor or injury, diabetes mellitus and iron deficiency. Sleep apnea too associated with deep snoring is attributed to this issue. Even Uremia (build up of waste in blood) and narcolepsy (excessive sleepiness and urge to sleep during morning hours) are considered to be valid causes of PLMD.

While medication such as antidopaminergic agents and neuroleptics help in relieving PLMDthey aren’t entirely successful. No known cure for this condition exists but some believe that proper sleeping posture and sufficient hours can help reduce the symptoms over time. Using medicinal mattresses such as memory foam mattress from Jonathan Steven’s may help along with the right set of medication.

How To Diagnose If You Have PLMD

Obviously as the name suggests, you can expect leg movements during sleep but poor sleep and laziness throughout the day are also associated symptoms. In fact, the problem with this sleep condition is that many are unaware that it exists in them until their partners alert them of it.

Leg movements can include one or both the limbs, the ankle, knee joint or all bottom joints. It can either be jerky, strenuous, thrashing or repetitively kicking in nature lasting anywhere from 2 seconds or much slower over a cyclic period of 20 to 40 seconds. If you experience sleep deprivation during the day time, feel the need to sleep but can’t, it might be a good idea to ask your partner to observe your sleep through the night for any rhythmic jerks in the lower body. Above all start sleeping well and change the mattress to a medicinal one.

Don’t be (or take) a pill

  sleep aids health sleep tips sleep trouble insomnia
Thursday, November 14, 2013

A night without enough and good sleep can be a bad experience and one would often resort to taking sleeping pills to get some sleep. The question is how effective and healthy are these pills? And are there negative effects that come with taking sleeping pills? Agreeably, most medical experts discourage the taking of sleeping pills. The reason could be attributed to some negative consequences, which is detrimental to health. Insomnia is a sleeping problem among many people and they often resort to taking some pills. Medically, sleeping pills have been associated with problems as discussed in this article.

What are sleeping pills?

Sleeping pills usually referred to as sedative hypnotics by definition are a class of drugs which help bring about sleep and maintain it for a given period of time. However, as a natural process and in most cases involuntary, inducing sleep using pills may become detrimental to one’s health. The common problem associated with sleeping pills is the slowing down of breathing rate. The breathing also becomes less deep. This is not advisable for people with asthma as death can be in the offing. Asthma folks have lung problems and when breathing rate slows down, it becomes quite dangerous.

What are the side effects of sleeping pills?

Just like any other drug, sleeping pills too have side effects. Apart from slowing breathing rate as mentioned earlier, sleeping pills can cause drowsiness when overused. When taken in large quantities, they can cause oversleeping as one can feel sleepy for the better part of the day. This is closely associated with being inactive.
Another common problem associated with sleeping pills is dizziness. When taken in excess or in an overdose, sleeping pills can become detrimental to brain functioning. Slow breathing will consequently result in lack of enough oxygen supply to the brain. This may be a major cause for many cases of hallucinations associated with sleep sickness.

Constipation is another problem closely associated with taking an overuse of sleeping pills. This can also be linked to loss or changes in appetite. Further, sleeping pills have been scientifically proven to be a cause for headache especially when one oversleeps, dry mouth and throat as well as weakness. Oversleeping attributed to intake of sleeping pills would amount to general weakness of the body and consequently making one inactive for most of the day. Consequently, sleeping pills are not as advisable as having a good sleep for a healthy living.

Quality Trumps Quantity

  sleep tips health sleep trouble sleep science
Saturday, November 2, 2013

How much is enough when it comes to sleep? And does quality trump quantity of sleep? Well, there could be a thin line between quantity of sleep and quality but using basic scientific sleeping principles, the two can be gauged on many ends. Someone exhausted after having done a physically strenuous job will need a quality sleep to recover lost strength. There is the necessity of going through all the sleeping stages to call it a complete sleeping cycle.

The next question which would come to the fore is, what is the difference between quality and quantity sleep? While quality sleep would denote going through all the sleeping stages and wake up feeling replenished and stronger, quantity sleep is a scenario where one slumbers for many hours without the feeling of relaxation or satisfaction.

For a good sleep quality, Jonathan Stevens mattress would draw closer to thought. Medical prescriptions of quality sleeping are inclusive of lying on a good mattress that does not strain your back. Scientifically, sleeping should be undertaken in a certain posture in order to reap maximum benefits from it.

The benefits of quality sleep.

Quality sleep is closely associated with a healthy living and as a consequence yields forth many benefits to the body with regard to its normal functioning. Quality sleep is beneficial in terms of providing sufficient strength during the day necessary for undertaking physical duties at work. Sleeping in itself is a process of recuperating during which memory and general strength gets replenished. Further, quality sleep is not about the number of hour one has slumbered or taken a nap but the effectiveness of all the sleeping stages and in particular the Rapid Eye Movement sleeping stage (REM). The Rapid Eye Movement sleeping stage is an integral part of quality sleeping, which aids in brain development especially in young people. It is also a stage instrumental towards memory consolidation and in this case procedural and spatial memory. Basically, quality sleep involves the REM cycle by default and without this stage one simply cannot experience the benefits of a quality sleep.

Disadvantages of quantity sleep.

Quantity is the opposite of quality. Scientifically sleeping, quantity is disapproved given its limited or no benefits to human health. Sleeping for long hours say form 8p.m to midday the following day is closely linked to laziness as it often results in fatigue rather that strength. Actually there are no scientifically documented benefits of high quantity sleep. And hence by far, quality subdues quantity when it comes to sleeping.