Sleep is an incredibly important part of staying healthy, but it seems that no-one really knows why or how it works. All we know at the moment is that most people need around 8 hours of sleep and those who don’t generally end up feeling run down, have poorer health and may even be more susceptible to developing dementia.

So, even though we don’t really know why, what we do know is that getting enough good quality sleep is vital for a good quality of life. Taking good care of yourself isn’t just about what you do while you are awake, it’s also about what happens overnight.

Choosing the Best Mattress For You

The right mattress can make a huge difference; you need to be comfortable while you sleep as well as fully supported. Many people suffer with back pains and aches because their mattress isn’t quite perfect, which is really silly when the solution is so obvious. Changing your pillows may also help you to get more comfortable if you are suffering with a sore neck.

Try out a few mattresses to compare results and always lie down in your usual position for around 15 minutes to settle down. Finding a quality mattress isn’t necessarily about choosing the most expensive mattress or even going off recommendations from friends. Because everyone is different, it might be that the cheapest mattress is actually best for you or that the mattress that your friend is loving is a disaster for your back.

Setting the Temperature

It might be surprising, but the temperature of your bedroom will also contribute to the quality of your sleep. In order to drift off, your body needs to cool down – this is why a warm shower before bed can make you feel sleepy.

Setting the thermostat to around 60-67 degrees Fahrenheit is the best temperature for your room, allowing you to fall asleep quickly without being too hot or too cold. You might also like to use layers of bedding rather than one thick blanket or thin sheet. As your temperature may fluctuate, being able to throw off some covers is a good way to regulate your temperature subconsciously while you sleep.

Working Out How Long You Need

The vast majority of adults require between 7-9 hours of sleep each night, but if you are waking up feeling groggy and out of sorts, you might need to adjust your sleeping pattern to get the right amount of sleep for you. For example, when you are feeling ill, you might need to sleep for a few hours during the day as well as at night. This isn’t a problem, just a case of listening to what your body needs and following its instructions.

If you have a long-term illness or condition, you may well need significantly more sleep and though you might want to fight the urge to nap, you shouldn’t see sleep as wasted time. Sleeping properly will give you a much better quality of life, helping to reduce the symptoms of fatigue and aching bones as well as putting you in a better mood. Do what’s right for you, and no-one else.


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