6 Common Sleeping Mistakes (and Ways To Avoid Them)

Tired man yawning, covering his mouth with his hand

by Sleep First 4 min read

Over 70 million people in the US suffer from chronic sleep problems. 1 in 3 adults aren’t getting enough sleep night after night. Worrying as these stats seem, they paint a picture of a common problem in the country - sleep deprivation.


Not having enough sleep can have a serious impact on your mental health and physical wellbeing. You may end up with memory issues, hypertension, weakened immunity, obesity and mood swings. 


As an adult, you typically need 7-9 hours of quality sleep each night. If you aren’t getting enough sleep, you might be making some of the sleeping mistakes that rob many people of quality sleep. In this post, we explore six mistakes that can get in the way of deep sleep and share useful tips to enhance your sleep. Let’s jump right in:


1. Snoozing on an uncomfortable mattress

Ever wonder why you sleep like a baby in a hotel but find yourself tossing and turning at home? There’s a strong correlation between mattress comfort and sleep quality. One study found that a new mattress can reduce back pain by 57%, back discomfort by 59%, shoulder pain by 60% and enhance sleep quality by 60%. If your old mattress isn’t doing what it’s supposed to do - usher you to sleep - it’s time you dispose of it. It’s recommended you change your mattress every 5-8 years. At Sleep First, we can help you upgrade to a quality mattress to unlock a good night’s sleep. 


2. Using a low quality pillow

Pillow fights are fun! But a poor quality pillow won’t make you sleep better. If you’re struggling to sleep, your current pillow could be the culprit. Upgrading your pillow can help you enjoy quality sleep. For less than $100, you can get a comfortable, affordable pillow that does wonders for you each night. Memory foam and latex pillows are good options and can provide enough support to reduce neck fatigue. Come to a Sleep First mattress store near you to explore your options. 


3. Not sticking to a sleeping schedule

It’s vital to have a specific sleeping and waking time. Sleeping anytime you want and waking up whenever you feel like will certainly lower your sleep quality. Irregular sleep patterns can throw your body’s circadian rhythm off balance, leading to low-quality and interrupted sleep. That’s not to mention an irregular sleep routine also interferes with melatonin level - a hormone that helps you relax and transition into a deep sleep phase.


While some people go to bed and rise up at predictable times on a workday, the schedule changes on weekends. Regardless of the day, try to develop a sleep schedule and stick to it 7 days a week. You will notice a tremendous shift in mood and wake up feeling energized to tackle the day’s work.


4. Sleeping in an un-optimized bedroom

Where you sleep equally matters and will affect your sleep pretty much the same way an untidy desk freezes your mind. Optimizing your sleep environment can elevate your moods and help you enjoy a proper night’s sleep. Pay attention to external, room temperature, noise, and furniture arrangement. Ideally, keep the room temperature at 70°F or a temperature. Arrange your furniture and make sure your room is clean, quiet and relaxing. Changing up the curtains, removing junk from your room, and regulating artificial lights can all contribute to better sleep each night.


5. Prolonged screen exposure

Watching TV late into the night isn’t a great idea. Not only do you reduce your sleep hours, but you expose your eyes to blue light. That’s where the real problem is. This type of light comes off your TV, computers, and smartphone screens and tricks your body into thinking it’s still daytime. As you prepare to sleep, it’s advisable to reduce exposure to screens as they emit blue light. Stop watching TV or using your smartphone 2 hours before going to bed. Alternatively, you can also wear special glasses that block blue light.


6. Drinking coffee late in the day

Almost two-thirds of Americans have one or more cups of coffee each daily. In fact, the average person drinks 3 cups daily. If you’re struggling to sleep each night, look no further than the coffee you take. It’s advisable to avoid drinking coffee and other high-caffeine drinks late evening or before you go to bed. Try to avoid caffeine products six hours before bed time. Studies show that caffeine remains in your blood for six to eight hours, and ultimately, gets in the way of quality sleep. If you always have coffee in the afternoon, go for decaffeinated coffee.


Want to Get Better Sleep?

Invest in a high-quality mattress and pillow then optimize your bedroom for a perfect sleep experience. Avoid coffee, TV and stick to a regular sleep schedule. If you have an old mattress, and feel it’s not doing its job, come to Sleep First and explore your mattress options with a sleep-trained expert. You can try out your favorite mattress - lie down and roll on to discover the perfect sleep position. With a risk-free 365-day trial, you have more than enough time to try out your dream mattress!


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