March 11th, 2020 by
In our eternal quest for health and wellness, one of the best gifts that we can give to our bodies is to get the right amount and quality of sleep. It can, however, be elusive to many with research suggesting that up to 16 million people in the UK alone experience some difficulty sleeping and 48% of adults admit they don’t get the right amount of sleep.
So, how can you improve your sleep? There are, of course, medications you can take to help you sleep but these should always be taken with caution as they could bring side effects and issues you didn’t want so always try non-medicinal methods first. Strategies like drinking warm milk and cutting out screen time before bed can help but there is a lot of evidence that an electric blanket can have a really positive impact on sleep.
Here are some of the reasons why:
Better regulation of heat
Obviously, the purpose of an electric blanket is to keep you warm at night but there’s more to it than that. An electric blanket gives you control over that heat so the heat is regulated in terms of coverage over the whole bed and for the duration of the night. It’s also much more comfortable than simply wearing lots of layers in bed.
Signals time to sleep
Because you can switch your electric blanket on before you go up to bed, it will already be the optimum temperature when you get into it. This signals to your body that it’s time to sleep. Think of it in a similar way to having a nice relaxing warm bath before bed but without having to get out and get dry which can counteract some of the benefits of having the bath. This, coupled with the feel of the soft, cosy fabric against your body, can help sleep come more quickly as your body doesn’t need to use any energy to warm you up after getting into a cold bed.
Helps you stay asleep
In the winter, the temperature will drop through the night and often this can wake people up. With the regulated heat of an electric blanket, you are much less likely to be disturbed in this way. If your temperature fluctuates in the night it can disturb your circadian rhythm (the natural process that regulates the sleep-wake cycle). The knock-on effect of this could be broken sleep at night and then wanting to nap or being very tired during the day.
Even if the cold does not fully wake you in the night, it may pull you out of the very deep sleep that you need to recharge your body thus reducing the quality of your sleep. Your body uses energy to keep itself warm and expending energy is counter-productive to getting the rest you need.
Eases aches and pains
One of the biggest barriers to sleep is the aches and pains you may experience when you start to relax at the end of a long day. This is especially so for older people. Heat is a common, natural form of pain relief as the heat receptors in our body can actually block the effect of chemical signals that communicate pain to the brain. The even, regulated heat from an electric blanket can really help relieve these aches and pains as well as improve circulation which can assist with recovery from injuries.
The value of sleep
Getting high-quality sleep every night is right up there with good nutrition and regular exercise in terms of the positive impact it can make to your health and well-being. Lack of sleep, poor quality sleep or just not enough sleep will do the exact opposite. Before you reach for the sleeping tablets, why not give an electric blanket a try.
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