From The Straits Times    |

Image: Cover Media

Sitting at your desk feeling exhausted? Well you’re not alone. New figures shows that nearly a quarter of British adults aged between 30 and 50 are only managing to get five hours a sleep each night.

When you take into consideration the recommended amount of slumber is nearly eight hours for us to function at our best, and that poor sleep is linked to anxiety and depression among other health concerns, it seems a lot of us are at danger of damage.

Researchers at the University of Leeds conducted an online survey for Silentnight beds, looking at 1,024 Britons aged 18 to 80. The results showed a clear sleep deficiency in the 30 to 50 age group.

“Less than five hours is associated with serious negative health outcomes, including cardiovascular problems, obesity and diabetes,” Lead scientist Dr Anna Weighall commented.

“The increasing demands of modern life, social media and connected technologies may affect the quality and quantity of our sleep and pose a serious and detrimental threat to health.”

The research was presented at the British Sleep Society conference. Other health problems that can arise from lack of sleep include heart disease, impaired work and an increased risk of accidents. So if you’re not getting enough sleep, now’s the time to change your bedtime routine.

1. Ban bedroom tech
It’s a topic that’s been widely covered, but not one that’s easy to stick to. Checking emails, social media and text messages in the evening may seem harmless, but getting into bed should be a time to relax. It’s also been found that the blue light on our gadgets, especially the phones kept so close to the bed used as an alarm, interrupts sleep.

2. Unwind
Everyone is guilty of rushing around doing household errands right up until you get into bed, but this hardly puts you in a relaxing mood. Draw a line when to wind down, and stick to it. Old fashioned sleeping aids like a warm bath, hot milk and lavender sprayed on to your pillow will also help your body to relax.

3. Pick the right bed
Mattresses should be changed every eight years, but again this is something people often neglect. A sagging middle, springs that pop out in the wrong direction and a groaning sound all night long does not make for a restful night. Memory foam is still one of the most favoured types of mattress, with Tempur mattresses as popular as ever. Eve Mattress uses memory foam but is a little firmer, so great for anyone who doesn’t like their bed too soft. The company also uses latex technology to help regulate the bodies’ temperature as you doze. — Cover Media