Relationships and Sleeping

Most couples enjoy sharing a bed – but that doesn’t mean it’s a perfect situation. Nice as it may be to have your partner close, sleeping beside someone else can make it a lot harder to get the sleep you need. The good news is that this problem is hardly unique. In fact, most couples require some communication and coordination before they’re able to sleep soundly together. Here are some tips to help turn your bedroom into a space that’s relaxing and restful for everyone:

Use the Right Size Mattress

There’s only one solution for a mattress that’s too small for two people: get a bigger one. Since most single people buy mattresses that suit the needs of one person, new couples often discover that their communal bed is too small. Sleep needs and preferences can also change over time, leading a couple that’s been fine sleeping in a smaller bed to want to upgrade to a King or California King. Potentially add pets and kids to the mix as well, and it’s clear why a lot of couples get the biggest bed they can fit in the bedroom. A lot of couple’s sleep issues can be resolved simply by giving everyone enough space.

Address Snoring Head On

About half of all people snore. Most bedrooms contain at least one person who snores, and while it’s not a problem for everyone, it’s a big disturbance for some people. Instead of trying to be polite or get used to the nightly noise, address the snoring issue head-on. It could be a sign of a more serious health issue, so your partner should get checked out by a doctor. Special pillows, nasal strips, and other products promise to cut down on snoring, but it may take some experimentation to find a treatment that works. It’s worth the effort, though, because both partners should be able to sleep peacefully through the night.

Discuss Your Preferences

Don’t assume that just because you like being together automatically means you’ll sleep perfectly together. Sharing a bed takes an honest and ongoing conversation. Both partners should share how they prefer to sleep – the level of contact, noise, temperature, screens, morning routine, etc. – and what annoys them about sharing a bed. If you’re not on the same page about something, discuss how you’ll compromise. Ideally, you’ll have this conversation early in your relationship, but it’s important to bring it up again periodically. You should also be willing to listen when your partner wants to discuss issues with your shared bed.

Prevent Tossing and Turning

It’s the definition of a rude awakening when your partner’s arm or leg crashes into you in the middle of the night. A bigger mattress can help, not only because it gives you more room but also because uncomfortable mattresses cause most tossing and turning. If your current mattress is more than 5-6 years old, it’s close or past the expiration point. And if your partner is new to your bed or dealing with the onset of a healing issue, the current mattress may not support his or her sleep needs. Even if you don’t need a bigger mattress, upgrading to a newer one crafted using the best of today’s sleep science can help minimize restless sleeping – not to mention give you a nicer sleeping surface too.

Schedule Your Sleep

Perhaps you like to fall asleep early while your partner prefers to stay up. Then, in the morning, you want to jump straight out of bed while your partner likes to linger under the covers. There’s nothing wrong with being on different sleep schedules as long as you’re both in agreement about them. There’s also plenty of room for compromise. For example, if you want to turn in early but still want to be close to your partner, perhaps they would agree to read or browse their phone in bed with you. The next day when you’re up early, show the same courtesy by quietly leaving the bedroom while your partner continues to sleep.

Respect the Bedroom

Bedrooms should really be only for sleeping and sex. It’s tempting to relax in the bedroom, especially when you have kids, but then the space quickly fills up with books, papers, cords, dishes, and all kinds of other ephemera. In addition to getting cluttered, the bedroom becomes a live/workspace instead of a sleep sanctuary. Being surrounded by distractions only makes it harder for both of you to focus on what matters – each other and sleep.

Be Practical

Some couples sleep in separate beds or even in separate rooms. It’s not an indictment of their relationship- it can still be full of love and intimacy. But the simple fact is that some people can’t share a bed, and the best solution is to look for an alternative. It may take some getting used to, but if it results in one or both of you getting better sleep, separate beds could ultimately bring you two closer together.

Plan a Date to Sit n’ Sleep

It’s hard to overstate how important good sleep is to a good relationship. If someone in your bedroom isn’t sleeping, both of you should visit a local Sit n’ Sleep superstore. With 38 of them located throughout Southern California, there’s sure to be one close to you. Tour our extensive inventory of mattresses from all the top brands at a wide range of price points. More importantly, try out some mattresses with your partner and figure out what works for both of you. The sleep experts at each of our superstores are here to help you explore your options and find compromises when necessary. Plan a visit sooner rather than later, and please contact us with questions.

Tips for Helping Your Child Get To Sleep

Children need quality sleep on a consistent basis to support their health and growth. Sleep is actually one of the most important factors in their overall development: intellectually, emotionally, and physically. Therefore, it’s crucial that kids get enough sleep – especially when their restless nights are keeping mom and data awake too. Follow these tips to help kids of all ages get the sleep they need:

Know What’s Healthy

Before doing anything else, you need to determine how much sleep your kid should actually be getting.  Generally, toddlers need around 12 hours of sleep, children 3-12 need 10-12 hours, and teenagers need 8-9 hours. Figure out what time they need to be up for school or activities, then adjust their bedtime so that they have time to get enough sleep. But not so much time that they’re lying in bed before fatigue sets in.

Create a Bedtime Routine

Once you determine the right time to wind things down at night, follow the same routine. That routine might include bathing, brushing teeth, putting on pajamas, and reading a story. Routines help establish healthy sleep patterns that the body begins to recognize as a signal it’s time to sleep. For kids especially, turning bedtime into something familiar and predictable makes it easier to get good night after night.

Do Something Relaxing

High-energy activities right before bed only make it harder to sleep. So does looking at a TV, phone, tablet, or computer screen. Kids benefit from doing something relaxing once they’re ready for bed but not quite able to sleep. That could mean listening to some music, reading a book, writing in a journal, or practicing a breathing or relaxation exercise. Younger kids may only need 10-20 minutes to relax, but for older kids, it might take 30 minutes to an hour to feel ready to sleep. Factor this into the bedtime routine.

Be Consistent

Stick to a consistent bedtime and sleep routine every night as much as possible. That means going to bed and waking up at the same time (approximately) on the weekends, and also during school breaks and family vacations. That doesn’t mean kids can’t ever stay up late or get up early, but you should try to avoid changes as much as possible.

Provide a Sense of Safety

Many kids experience some kind of anxiety about being alone in the dark. A night light can help, as can positive reinforcement when your child displays courage or independence. You can also help the situation by avoiding scary media – TV, movies, video games, bedtime stories. And while it may be tempting to let your child crawl in bed with you whenever they feel scared, it’s important for kids to get comfortable sleeping on their own. It’s a life skill they need to learn as early as possible.

Upgrade the Bedroom

Children have the same sleep needs as anyone else: a dark and quiet space that’s a comfortable temperature and free of distractions. Make sure your kid’s room isn’t brighter or noisier than you realize, especially if it’s adjacent to a living area. And like everyone else, kid needs a quality mattress to sleep on. Kids outgrow mattresses just like their clothes, meaning they might be sleeping on something too small. Kid’s mattresses wear out faster too, especially when it’s a hand me down, so it could be also uncomfortable and lacking support. If the mattress is more than 6-8 years old, consider a replacement.

Eat a Good Dinner

If your child doesn’t eat enough at dinner, it can leave them feeling hungry and uncomfortable when it’s time to sleep. Conversely, if they eat large portions of unhealthy foods, they could have digestive distress around bedtime. Try to get your child to eat enough good foods that he or she doesn’t need a snack at night. But if you think a snack might help, choose something like a piece of fruit or a glass of milk instead of something sugary or heavy.

Use the Day Strategically

The most reliable way to get your kid to sleep at night is getting them to burn off lots of energy during the day. Encourage active play, and go outside whenever possible to get exposure to natural light. Sunlight during the day help’s your child’s internal body clock register the passage of time and activate the desire to sleep at night. You don’t have to avoid naps, just make sure they don’t go longer than your child needs, even if they would like to sleep more.

Sit n’ Sleep – For Everything Your Child Needs

When you need a child’s mattress, visit one of the 38 Sit n’ Sleep locations throughout Southern California. We have options to suit kids of all ages and budgets at every price point. And if it leads to better sleep for your child and more peaceful nights for mom and dad, it’s certainly a good investment. Spend some time exploring our website to learn more about our mattress inventory and our sleep accessories. Or feel free to call us at 800-908-0354.

Relaxation Techniques for Better Sleep

You want to sleep and you need to sleep, but instead, you’re wide awake and feeling anxious about it. So what’s the problem? It could be countless things, but the solution is always the same – learn to relax. That’s easier said than done, of course, but when you learn to release whatever is keeping you up, the restful sleep you’ve been hoping for comes a lot more quickly. The next time you’re struggling to get to sleep, try one (or several) of the relaxation tips outlined below. Each one might not work for everyone, but if you try all of them out sincerely you’re likely to find one that works for you.

10 Tips to Help You Relax

  1. Create a Sleep Sanctuary – Here’s a paradox for you: when you can’t sleep you begin to worry about not sleeping, and that worry only them makes it harder to sleep. It’s a vicious circle, but the root cause might be a bedroom that’s simply not conducive to sleep. You want it to be a comfortable temperature, usually between 60 and 65 degrees, and be free of distracting lights and loud noises. You also want to be lying on top of a mattress, sheets, and pillows you actually like. Bedrooms are for sleep first and foremost, so make sure yours provides the perfect environment to doze off and stay in dreamland.
  2. Unburden Your Mind – If you have a big or busy day coming up, you might lay awake thinking about all you need to do instead of getting the sleep you need to seize the day tomorrow. Pushing specific thoughts of your head is never easy, but one method that can work is writing things down in a notebook next to your bed. Make a quick to-do list, write a note to yourself, or simply put your thoughts down on paper. It sounds unbelievable, but once you get those thoughts out of your mind and onto the page, they often stay there the rest of the night.
  3. Practice Progressive Muscle Relaxation – Tension in your body can cause or contribute to stress in your mind. Release that tension by progressively tensing and relaxing each muscle group in your body. Start with your face, focusing on your forehead, followed by your eyes, and then your mouth. Hold each group tense for five seconds then relax for 10 seconds while breathing deeply before moving on to the next group. Continue on down your body, tensing each of your arms and legs separately. Plan to spend about 15 minutes on this exercise before finishing with your feet and toes. At the same time that you’re releasing tension, the act of focusing closely on discreet muscle groups helps distract you from whatever in your mind is keeping you awake.
  4. Hum Softly to Yourself – Humming has many of the same effects as deep breathing. It helps to calm you down, focus you on something besides the thoughts running around in your head, and even burn up a little bit of energy in the process. Humming can also help you to release tension from your neck and shoulders, which in turn helps release it from your whole body. Try to focus on humming generally rather than humming a specific melody. Be respectful of your sleeping partner too.
  5. Listen to Relaxing Sounds – There are some sounds that just about everyone finds relaxing – gentle waves or wind blowing through leaves are two good examples. Listening to these sounds on a bedside speaker or through a pair of headphones can help put your body in a relaxed mood while encouraging you to focus your thoughts on what you’re hearing. If you find some other sounds relaxing – music, speech, nature sounds, white noise etc – use that instead. Just be sure that whatever you listen to is relaxing and not just distracting. The wrong choice could actually make it harder to sleep.
  6. Breathe Intentionally – This may be the simplest relaxation technique on the whole list. Simply breathe in for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 7 seconds, then exhale for a full 8 seconds. Count out the seconds in your head so that you’re performing each step for the prescribed length. Deep breathing is known to produce a feeling of calm, and by focusing closely on the act itself you may be able to distract yourself from whatever is causing you stress.
  7. Transport Your Thoughts Elsewhere – When you’re stressed out it can feel impossible to think about anything else, but sometimes all you need to do is think about a memory or scenario that you find relaxing. It could be an image of you lounging on a sunny beach or walking through the woods on a hike – anything that helps you feel calm. Try to occupy the memory as much as possible, focusing on the little details, either remembered or imagined. It can take some time to master this technique, but once you learn to guide the images in your mind towards subjects you find relaxing, stress becomes a problem you can easily overcome.
  8. Enjoy a Snack – Midnight snacks aren’t just to indulge a craving. They can also help you relax when you’re struggling to get to sleep as long as you pick the right things. Avoid alcohol, caffeine, spicy snacks, or fatty foods because they can all keep you up. Foods like berries, yogurt, bananas, and chamomile tea all have the opposite effect. When you’re stressed-out is also a great time to treat yourself, so don’t feel guilty if you have a small piece of chocolate.
  9. Get Out of Bed – This may sound counter-intuitive, but when you’re lying awake you may want to get out of bed and get moving. Your bed is for sleep, but if it starts to become the place where you worry and stress it can stop being a source of relaxation and renewal. Try to keep your stress elsewhere by leaving your bedroom and restarting your sleep routine. It might be 30 minutes or an hour before you’re ready to get back in bed, but when you do you will hopefully have left your stress behind so that you can fall quickly into a deep state of sleep.
  10. Be Mindful – Mindfulness is essentially a combination of many of the techniques outlined above. It incorporates intentional breathing, guided thinking, and releasing tension from the muscles. It works a little differently for everyone, but in most cases, you practice mindfulness by putting relaxation at the center of your mind and body. People who practice mindfulness on a consistent basis often find they experience less stress overall, and when they do they’re able to overcome it in far less time. As a result, mindful people tend to get great sleep.

Sit n’ Sleep – Your Relaxation Specialists

It’s hard to relax when you’re lying on top of a mattress that you don’t absolutely love. In fact, trying to sleep on the wrong mattress could be contributing to your stress and could even be the original source. If your mattress is more than 7 years old or poorly suited to your sleep needs, it’s time to consider a replacement. Explore today’s best options at one of the 38 Sit n’ Sleep showrooms located throughout Southern California. Modern mattresses don’t just help you relax – they use the best of today’s sleep science to help you sleep faster, longer, and deeper night after night. Browse our website to learn about the impressive and affordable options in our inventory, and feel free to call us at 800-908-03

Natural Cures for Insomnia/Natural Sleep Aids

 

Sleep is a fundamental part of life and one of the biggest contributors to your health and well-being. Yet despite the fact that everyone wants and needs to sleep, many people still struggle to get enough rest. One in four Americans develops persistent insomnia each year, and though the vast majority recover, the fact is that most people have nights (or weeks or months) when they’re lying awake at night instead of deep sleep.

Frustrating as this problem may be, it’s rarely permanent, and it’s not untreatable either. Best of all, natural cures and organic sleep aids often work just as well as prescription sleep treatments, meaning you may not need to visit the doctor to fix this health problem. Before you take more serious steps to solve your sleep issues, try nature’s remedies:

Exercise Better

One reason you may not be sleeping well is because you’re simply not very tired. Exercise can help you burn off exercise energy, but you shouldn’t try to exhaust yourself with every workout. Ideally, you get 60 minutes of mild to moderate exercise 5 days a week. Lifting weights, doing cardio, or simply going for walk in your neighborhood all help to literally wear your body out and promote the need for sleep. Beyond that, exercise relieves stress and encourages relaxation while contributing significantly to your overall health and well-being. The right exercise routine can transform your life in many ways, all of which help you sleep soundly night after night.

Fix Your Bedroom

Your bedroom itself could also be causing your restless sleep. If it’s too bright, too loud, or not the right temperature, it inhibits your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep. Something as simple as adjusting the thermostat, using a white noise machine, or hanging blackout curtains could solve all your sleep problems. Your bed is another common culprit. An undersized or worn out mattress makes it hard to get comfortable, as does the wrong pillow, sheets, or blanket. Systematically replace what you sleep with and observe the effects.

De-Stress Your Life

Stress can make you feel fatigued while also, paradoxically, making it harder to sleep. It can also compromise your mental and physical well-being in ways that affect your sleep health too. Think of stress as the enemy of sleep, then purse holistic methods for removing it from your life. Those can include keeping a journal where you work through your thoughts before bed, doing some yoga to promote relaxation, or performing a guided imagery exercise to get your mind off negative thoughts. Some people also find progressive muscle relaxation helpful when counting sheep has stopped working. Even just going to sleep earlier can help you avoid stress-related insomnia by giving you more time to fall asleep.

Eat the Right Way

Food can help your sleep or hurt your sleep, both in terms of what you eat and when. Make sure you’re eating enough that you don’t feel hungry late at night, and eat your last big meal at least 3-4 hours before bed. Foods like cheese, almonds, whole-grain crackers and low-fat milk have all been shown to promote relaxation and even drowsiness. Alternately, spicy and fatty foods along with alcoholic and caffeinated drinks can make it harder to sleep. There’s nothing wrong with a light, late-night snack when you’re struggling to sleep (it can even help calm you), just make sure you’re not doing more harm than good by prioritizing eating oversleeping.

Change Your Lifestyle

All of us develop sleep routines, which is a good thing as long as those routines help rather than hurt your sleep. Try to avoid screens of any kind – TVs, phones, tablets, laptops – for the hour before bed, and opt to read, talk, or do something else that’s low-impact and non-digital. Bathing at night can also help because the experience tends to leave people feeling relaxed and refreshed. Consider aromatherapy as well. For some people, scents like lavender, vanilla, or sandalwood elicit a feeling of calm and contentment, but you’re free to use any scent you like. In all cases, take a close look at your nightly habits, and be honest about what’s aiding or obstructing your sleep.

Try a Natural Remedy

Human beings discovered ways to help themselves sleep long before we discovered Ambien and other prescription sleep aids. Natural remedies may not work for you, but you won’t know until you try, and many are quite affordable and accessible. For centuries, people sipped Chamomile tea to relax because the chemical compounds inside chamomile have mild sedative properties. Similar properties are found in St. John’s wort, valerian root, and passion fruit. Natural supplements available over-the-counter like melatonin also have powerful sleep-boosting effects.

Get Natural Sleep the Easy Way at Sit n‘ Sleep

Many things cause insomnia, but when it becomes a persistent problem you need to rule out your mattress as the source. Bad mattresses can cause you to toss and turn at night, wake up feeling groggy in the morning, and deal with aches and pains throughout the day. Worse, one night of bad rest may cause you to have another and another, altering your sleep cycle in ways that aren’t healthy. Fortunately, fixing your insomnia may be as easy as replacing your mattress. When you’re ready to experience the best makes and models in the industry at prices a lot lower than you expected, visit one of the 38 Sit n’ Sleep locations throughout Southern California. You can also explore our entire inventory on our website to identify options you want to lie down on in one of our showrooms. Before or after your visit, contact us at 800-908-0354 with your questions.

Need Help Sleeping? Follow Expert Advice

At Sit n’ Sleep, we’re serious about the science of sleep. We regularly consult with experts, from sleep doctors to mattress designers, about the conditions that lead to good or bad sleep. We want to understand exactly what goes into creating a quality night of rest so that we can deliver exactly that experience for everyone we serve. In the end, our goal is to help you sleep soundly night after night

We recently contacted sleep experts from across the country to ask some of the most common sleep-related questions and concerns we hear. Many people have the same sleep troubles, and who better to ask about the solution than people who’ve spent their lives studying sleep?

Why is sleep so important?

Dr. Jason Piken has been in clinical practice since 1996 and specializes in stress-related sleep disorders. He emphasizes that good sleep is a fundamental part of good health. “The reason why sleep is essential to your health is the fact that the only time you are really healing your body from the day’s activities or traumas is while you sleep. To put it simply, if you are not sleeping, you are not healing.” In order to encourage the onset of sleep, Dr. Piken suggests sticking to a careful before-bed routine. “Make sure your room is as dark as possible during sleeping hours. Also, try to avoid watching TV, or looking at your cellphone for at least 30 minutes before bedtime. A good book, magazine or even an audiobook are great alternatives that will allow your brain to wind down properly before bed.”

Is there a secret to better sleep?

Dr. Carolyn Dean, MD, ND has spent more than 30 years studying sleep. When asked about sleep secrets, Dr. Dean recommends taking an over-the-counter supplement. “It’s hard to get a good night’s sleep without enough of the mineral Magnesium because Magnesium facilitates sleep-regulating melatonin (sleep hormone) production. Studies have shown that magnesium helps you get a deep and restful sleep.” She also stresses that what you don’t eat is just as important. “Avoid sugar and alcohol especially close to bedtime. When people eat sugar close to bedtime it can be too stimulating and interfere with sleep.”

How do sleep problems start?

Dr. Fran Walfish is a family and relationship psychotherapist based out of Beverly Hills. She notes that psychological issues cause sleep problems just as often as physical issues. “Sleep disruption is rooted in separation anxiety. When we are stressed, going through major changes or life transitions the first place we see symptoms is in sleep disruption. Trauma of any sort puts a person in a highly accelerated state of anxiety. Trauma may include the death of a beloved family member or pet, divorce, victim of a crime, change of job or residence, etc.” To overcome these issues, Dr. Walfish recommends following a nightly routine and eating foods like fish, whole grains, and almonds that are high in natural serotonin (a hormone important for sleep).

How important is a quality mattress?

Anne Griffith is a lifestyle expert who writes extensively about family life and building a happy home. In her experience, everyone needs a quality mattress to support their health and happiness. “Many people attribute morning aches and pains to aging when it is actually the lack of support in their old mattress that makes them wake up stiff and sore. If the mattress is too old to properly support the body, your muscles cannot relax while you sleep, which leads to morning aches and pains.” Griffith also points out that allergens like dust mites will build up in old mattresses and irritate sensitive sleepers.

What makes for good sleep hygiene?

Dr. Sashini Seeni is a General Practitioner working with DoctorsonCall. Like many of our interview subjects, Dr. Seeni emphasized the importance of practicing good sleep hygiene – the things you do every day to improve how you sleep. In addition to avoiding caffeine and limiting screen time, he advises getting active. “Exercise regularly preferably in the morning or before sunset. Exercise can help release body and mental stress which are the most common cause of the inability to sleep efficiently.” Creating a peaceful sleep environment should also be a priority according to Dr. Seeni. “A loud noise or bright room or simply uncomfortable sleeping environment can lead to loss of sleeping hours or frequent waking up during sleeping which will be translated into daytime sleepiness, drowsiness, and fatigue.”

Always Sleep Your Best

Sleep problems are common, complicated, and very disruptive if they leave you feeling fatigued all the time. Luckily, all of the experts we spoke to emphasized that most people can get consistently great sleep as long as they have the right routine and resources. If your mattress is part of the problem, Sit n’ Sleep can help. Visit one of our 38 superstores located throughout Southern California. One of our own sleep experts can help you select a mattress that complements your natural sleep style. Take some time to explore our website to learn about the therapeutic options we have available, and please contact us if you have questions.

Top 5 Ways to Improve Your Sleep Health in 2020

It’s the start of a new year, a new decade, and potentially a new you! One of the most positive changes you can make at the start of 2020 is committing to better sleep health. Sleep affects your mental and physical well-being in deep ways, making it essential to get enough rest on a nightly basis. If you do, you will start to feel better, look better, and want to live fully day in and day out. Follow these five expert-approved tips for developing healthy sleep habits:

Create a Routine

No matter what you do to improve your sleep, do it consistently. Changes to your sleep routine make it harder to get to sleep and stay asleep. Those changes can include going to bed at different times, sleeping in different locations, or wearing different clothes to sleep in (among lots of others). Ideally, you follow the exact same sleep routine every single night, but that’s unreasonable for most people. When you must change your routine – because you’re traveling, feeling sick, or staying out late – try to keep other variables consistent. For example, take your favorite pajamas with you on trips, and wake up at the same time even if you go to sleep later. When your body becomes used to a consistent sleep routine, following that routine becomes one of the easiest ways to get deep, healthy sleep.

Prep Your Body for Sleep

You might be your own worst enemy when it comes to sleep. Make sure you’re not keeping yourself unnecessarily awake by avoiding alcohol and caffeine for several hours before bed time. Similarly, try not to eat after dinner or to only snack lightly as digestive issues can make it harder to get relaxed. In addition to prepping your body for sleep, prep you mind by putting down your phone and turning off the TV at least 30 minutes before you plan to sleep. Calming as both these activities may be, they only keep your mind active and your body awake when you’re looking for the opposite. Reading a book, meditating, stretching, or talking are all relaxing before-bed activities that help bring you closer to sleep.

Nap Correctly

What is your 2020 New Year’s resolution? How about take more naps? Taking the right nap at the right time can actually help you sleep better at night. That’s because you get a boost of energy that keeps you active through the rest of the day and into the night. Think of it kind of like a cup of coffee in reverse – you get revitalized through rest. That being said, naps can hurt your nightly sleep if you sleep for too long or start too late in the day. There are also people who would sleep better if they avoided daytime naps entirely. You probably know which camp you fall into already, but if you’ve been struggling to sleep lately, it’s worth experimenting with napping more or less.

Exercise Regularly

Exercise benefits your physical and mental health, and it’s just as positive on your sleep health. It just makes sense that if you burn off some energy during the day you will sleep better at night. The more energy the better, but it doesn’t take a vigorous workout to improve your sleep. Even something low-impact like walking, casual cycling, or light aerobics can help. However, make sure your exercise routine doesn’t hurt your sleep routine. For example, some people wake up early to fit in a morning workout, which is simply trading sleep for exercise. It’s also smart to avoid exercise, particularly strenuous activities, right before bedtime.

Upgrade Your Sleep Space

We mentioned the importance of sleeping in the same space every night. One caveat is that the space needs to be optimized for rest. Remember that just because a space is called a bedroom doesn’t mean it’s doing anything to support your sleep. The most obvious problems are bright lights and loud noises, which you can correct with blackout curtains, a white noise machine, or additional insulation. Your bedroom should also be slightly cool, between 67 and 70 degrees, with moving air if that makes you feel more comfortable. As much as possible, keep work materials, crafts, or entertainment devices out of the bedroom so that it’s a space just for sleep. Finally, make sure your sleep accessories – mattress, pillows, sheets, blankets etc – are all to your liking. Everything directly in contact with your own body should help you sleep, not the opposite.

Resolve to Sleep Great in 2020!

Nothing compares to a great night of sleep. When you wake up to feel rested and refreshed, you’re ready to seize the day, put your best face forward, and grab life by the horns. Now imagine feeling that way everyday! It’s possible with the right sleep habits, along with the right sleep essentials. Your mattress, especially, could be the difference between great sleep and terrible sleep. Don’t let the wrong sleep surface hold you back in 2020 and beyond. Instead, visit one of the 38 Sit n Sleep locations throughout Southern California to experience some of the most comfortable, affordable, and innovative mattresses in the industry. Our sleep experts can help you find the right mattress for you, along with everything else you need to sleep your best. Learn more about us on our website, and contact us if you have any questions.

Tips to Get Better Sleep During the Holidays

The holiday season is full of hustle, bustle, fun, and festivity. With so much going on, you might find yourself without enough time for sleep, or struggling to fall asleep when you do have the time. Don’t worry, this is common. One survey found that the majority of respondents (57%) slept poorly during the holiday season. Whether because of stress or excitement, it’s normal to lose some sleep around this time of year. But that doesn’t mean it’s healthy – or unavoidable. Make sure you’re resting enough to keep the holidays merry and bright by following these seasonal sleep tips:

Stick To Your Normal Schedule

With all that goes on around the holiday season, you may find yourself wanting to stay up later than normal or needed to get up earlier than usual. An occasional break from your sleep schedule is ok, but consistently sleeping at different times around the holidays will not get you the rest you need. Make sure you’re trying to fall asleep when you normally do and waking up with your regular alarm – even if that means you get a little less sleep than you like. In this case, consistency is more important than getting 8 full hours of sleep on any given night.

Avoid the Temptation of Snacking

Around the holidays it feels like everywhere you turn there’s a plate of cookies or a tub of popcorn to munch on. Tempting as these treats may be, try not to snack for at least 2 hours before you plan to sleep. Eating a lot before bed can actually make it harder to sleep, and when most of what you’re eating is sugary treats you’re not doing yourself any favors. If you must eat something, try some fresh fruit or drink a glass of milk. Both can satisfy your hunger without keeping you up.

Turn Your Bedroom into a Sleep Sanctuary

When you have guests in from out of town, kids off from school, and friends and family over all the time, your home can feel like a madhouse around the holidays. You probably can’t avoid it, just make sure the chaos doesn’t spill over into your bedroom, which should be your sleep sanctuary. If conditions in your home make your bedroom feel less relaxing than usual, try getting a pair of ear plus, a sleep mask, a white noise machine, or blackout curtains to keep out the glow of Christmas lights. You should also resist the temptation to let your kids into the bed.

Watch What You Drink

Drinking the wrong thing before bed is even worse than eating the wrong thing. Adding to the problem, the kinds of drinks you want to avoid seem to be everywhere around the holidays. Even if someone offers you a peppermint mocha, avoid drinking any caffeine for several hours before bed. Be conscious about consuming spiked eggnog or other holiday cocktails too because alcohol can cause you to sleep poorly. You know your own limits, and most things are fine in moderation. That being said, overindulging in “holiday cheer” can keep you awake and leave you feeling drained the next day.

Accentuate the Positives

Let’s be honest, the holidays can be really stressful. And when you’re worried about getting everything done and keeping everyone happy, it’s hard to drift off into a deep, restful sleep. It’s never easy to get your mind off negative thoughts, but it really does help to try and consciously avoid them an hour before bed. Try to focus on rest and relaxation, making your priority sleep instead of stress. It may not work immediately, but with some mindful effort, you can avoid tossing and turning all night long.

Stick to Your Exercise Routine

There is a close link between getting enough exercise and getting enough sleep. The two are even more correlated around the holidays because you’re often feeling stressed, eating poorly, and looking for a little time on your own. Hitting the gym or getting 30 minutes of activity is the perfect solution when you’re feeling burned out by the holidays. Exercise is also a great way to burn off some energy so that you’re not feeling restless at midnight.

Practice Relaxation Techniques

If you have never tried a relaxation technique before, the holiday season is the perfect time to start. Meditation is probably the best-known technique, but there are dozens more including focusing on your breathing, flexing individual muscle groups, and even counting backward. Try a few out until you find one that works for you, then bust this technique out as much or as little as you need. Some people have an everyday routine while others only go through the motions when they’re trying to get the best sleep possible.

Better Sleep Leads to Happier Holidays

With so many places to go, people to see, and things to do around the holidays, you don’t want to sleep through the season. But you don’t want to shuffle through it either, and that’s exactly what will happen if you’re not getting adequate sleep on a consistent basis. If the tips and tricks outlined above don’t work, the problem might be a mattress that’s old, worn out, or wrong for your sleep needs. In that case, focus on getting a new mattress sooner rather than later. There are 38 Sit n Sleep superstores throughout Southern California, each with an extensive mattress inventory and friendly staff to help you find the perfect option. Browse our website in advance of your visit to learn more about what we offer, and call us at 800-908-0354 if you have any questions.

 

 

Guest Bedroom Essentials

For most people, their guest bedroom is an afterthought. It’s a space that only gets used occasionally, or does double duty as a home gym or office. As long as there’s a bed somewhere with a clean set of sheets on top, people assume the guest bedroom is ready for anyone to stay overnight. Whether guests actually sleep well though, is a tossup.

It makes perfect sense that you invest more in making your own bedroom a sleep sanctuary than you do your guest bedroom. But that doesn’t mean you can neglect the space where your guests stay the night. You don’t just want to offer them accommodations – you want them to feel comfortable and well-rested. With the holidays right around the corner and guests likely on the way, now is the best time to stock up on these guest bedroom essentials:

  • Extras of Everything – No one likes to have to ask for something simple they need. When you know guests are on the way, put extra towels, blankets, and pillows in the room they’re sleeping in. Everyone has different preferences, and it’s easier for all if you offer up more than anyone could possibly need. You don’t necessarily need to offer ultra-premium products, but resist the urge to use threadbare linens in your guest bedroom. If you wouldn’t use them, don’t force them on your guests.
  • A Trash Can – When you’re traveling, your pockets have a way of filling up with receipts and other refuse. Put a small wastebasket in the guest bedroom so that people have a way to discard their unwanted clutter.
  • A Clock – Everyone now has perfect time on their phone, but you still see clocks everywhere. Put one in your guest bedroom, as both a design element and a convenience feature. People appreciate being able to quickly reference the time. Plus, clocks let people avoid reaching for their phone, which is a small but thoughtful gesture that weary travelers tend to appreciate.
  • Storage Space – Don’t expect your guests to live out of their suitcases. Give them a space to unpack their things, and make sure there’s a place to hang up clothes. That may mean putting a standalone garment organizer in the room, or it may mean clearing out some of the junk that gets stored in the guest bedroom.
  • Storage Hooks – When people travel for the holidays they tend to dress in layers. That means when they arrive, they need a place to hang coats, scarves, hats, and purses, along with anything else in their luggage. The easy solution is to hang hooks over the door of the guest bedroom or the closet inside. Your guests may never use them, but they will always appreciate having them.
  • Comfortable Chair – A great guest bedroom is more than just a place to sleep. It’s also a place for guests to relax and have some time on their own. If the space allows, include a comfortable chair in the guest bedroom. It helps the space feel more complete and convenient.
  • Iron and Accessories – Travelers often arrive with formal wear, especially around the holidays when there are a lot of occasions to dress up. Make it easy for them to get ready by putting an iron and ironing board in the room. If space is limited, use an ironing board that can fold down from the back of a door or one that can sit on top of the bed.
  • Facial Tissues – This is the season of sniffly noses, and there are few things more annoying than needing a tissue but not having one. Always keep a box of tissues in the guest bedroom, and include an extra one with the extra linens.
  • Full-Length Mirror – Lots of guest bedroom have a mirror, but it typically cuts people off at the shoulders or waist. Allow people to check their look from head to toe by putting a full-length mirror somewhere in the space. If you don’t already have a full-length mirror in your bedroom, you will appreciate having one somewhere in your home.
  • Grooming Essentials – It’s hard to travel with all your grooming essentials and also easy to forget something at home. Provide guests with the basics – soap, shampoo, lotion, toothpaste etc – as well as a hairdryer.
  • Quality Mattress – The guest bedroom tends to be the dumping ground for an unwanted mattress. Instead of forcing your guests to make do with an old, uncomfortable, worn-outmattress (especially for multiple nights) get something that actually supports their sleep. High-quality mattresses have become very affordable, and there are options that can help anyone, regardless of sleep style, rest easy. Plus, you may end up sleeping on your own guest bed sometime – for a nap or during a bedroom renovation – in which case you will appreciate having a decent mattress to lie on.

Prepare for the Holidays With Sit n’ Sleep

Put yourself in your guest’s shoes and go spend some time in your guest bedroom. Now decide what’s missing, what you wished you had if you were a guest. Spend plenty of time evaluating the mattress because, in the end, it’s the centerpiece of the whole space. If the mattress feels adequate at best, consider an upgrade before your guests arrive for the holiday season. After all, your guests are a lot more likely to feel cheerful and festive if they get plenty of sleep. Sit n Sleep has all the guest bedroom essentials you need, and with 38 locations across Southern California, there’s a superstore near you. Discover how much we have to offer by exploring our website, or call us at 800-908-0354 with all of your questions.

How Yoga Can Help You Sleep

Yoga helps with just about everything. Physically, it can make you stronger, improve your balance, and enhance your flexibility. Mentally, it can help you feel calm, relaxed, and focused. Up to 36 million Americans practice yoga and it’s not hard to see why – it makes you feel better.

Another way yoga helps is by supporting your natural sleep needs. According to one national survey, more than 55% of respondents said doing yoga improved their sleep. In this article, we will be diving into the reasons why, and showing how you can use yoga to improve your own sleep.

The Deep Link Between Yoga and Sleep

We should say upfront that yoga is not a magic cure for sleep problems. If you’re regularly having trouble getting to sleep and staying asleep, it could be because of a worn-out mattress or a medical condition. That being said, yoga has a lot of benefits for people who want to sleep better on a more consistent basis. Many report they’re able to fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer, and wake up feeling more rested and refreshed. Here’s why:

  • Yoga Relieves Stress – Doing yoga reduces your body’s levels of cortisol, otherwise known as the “stress hormone.” Any kind of exercise helps your body release tension, but yoga, in particular, promotes relaxation because it’s relatively low-speed and low-impact. Better still, that feeling of relaxation lingers long after the yoga stops.
  • Yoga Calms the Nervous System – Stress and anxiety can put the nervous system into a state that makes it hard to sleep no matter how tired you feel physically. Yoga can help to calm your nerves so that it’s easier to fall into a restful sleep.
  • Yoga Serves Your Natural Routine – Sticking to a routine helps support a healthy sleep cycle, and yoga can be an important part of that routine. Doing some light yoga every night can help you physically and mentally prepare for sleep. Committing to the routine also helps you avoid bad habits that might keep you up at night.
  • Yoga Reduces Anxiety – The philosophy behind yoga promotes mindfulness and acceptance. Many people who practice yoga consistently find it helps their anxiety because they worry less about things outside of their control, especially when they’re lying in bed at night.
  • Yoga is an Alternative to Insomnia – When you can’t sleep you might decide to get on your phone, watch some TV, or grab a late snack. Unfortunately, all those things can make it harder to get back to sleep. Try doing some quick yoga instead. The activity is not enough to fully wake you up, and the motions can help focus your mind and body back on sleep.

A Yoga Routine to Help You Sleep

There’s no right or wrong way to use yoga to support your sleep. Ultimately, whatever works for you – based on your goals, schedule, ability, history etc – is what you should incorporate into your routine. However, there are certain poses that are especially good at relieving tension and promoting relaxation:

Wide-Knee Child’s Pose

Kneel on the floor with your toes together and your knees splayed. Sink your chest into your thighs, lowering your body towards the floor and letting your arms stretch back towards your toes. Keep your forehead on the ground while rolling your head gently from side to side. This pose is great for reducing tension throughout the upper body.

Standing Forward Bend

Put your feet shoulder-width apart and then bend at the waist as if you were trying to put your forehead to your knees. Let your hands rest on your shins or the floor but don’t bend so far that it becomes uncomfortable. Rock your hips and flex your calves to get a good stretch throughout your lower body.

Standing Half Forward Bend

This pose is very similar to the previous one, except you bend 90-degrees at the waist so your body forms an “L” shape. Stretch your arms in front of you so that they are just touching a wall, then use the resistance to work out tension in your shoulders and hips.

Reclining Bound Angle

Lie on the ground, bend your knees, and put the bottoms of your feet together. Let your knees fall away from each other, and bring your feet up towards your tailbone. This pose is designed to loosen up the hips and groin area.

Legs Up the Wall Pose

Act like you are sitting on a wall. Lie with your back on a mat and your legs stretched straight out in front of you up the wall. Try to keep your body in an L share and let your arms stretch perpendicular to your torso on either side. Simply holding this pose allows blood to drain out of your feet and ankles, which is great for people who spend a lot of time on their feet.

Corpse Pose

Traditionally done as the final pose in a yoga routine, corpse pose simply involves lying on your back. Let your arms rest comfortably to either side of you, and keep your legs straight but not rigid. Focus on your breathing, and stretch out any parts of your body that still feel stiff or sore. The goal is to release any tension remaining in your body while putting you into a state of extreme relaxation. Don’t be surprised (or embarrassed) if you nod off in the middle of the pose.

Rest Peacefully With Sit n’ Sleep

Getting great sleep isn’t easy, but it is essential. We encourage you to try some or all of the poses outlined above, holding each one for 3-5 minutes. However, if you start doing yoga and still struggle with sleep, the problem might not be your mind or body – it could be your mattress. Mattresses that are old, worn out, and unsuited to your sleep style can make it hard to sleep successfully even if you do hours of yoga each day. Visit one of our 38 locations throughout Southern California to try out an impressive array of modern mattresses designed for every style of sleeper. Feel free to explore our inventory (and get more sleep tips) on our website, and please call us at 800-908-0354 for more information.

Tips for a Better Cat Nap

When you see a cat napping away the day in a sunny spot, it’s hard not to be a little jealous. For most of us, a nap is a rare luxury and one that we only have a short time to enjoy. Unfortunately, the more you want to get to sleep, the harder it can be. If that sounds familiar, there are ways to take a better cat nap on those infrequent occasions when you actually get the chance. Get to sleep sooner and stay asleep for as long as your nap allows with these tips.

Dos

You can’t will yourself to sleep, but there is a lot you can do to feel calm and relaxed around when you want to nap.

  • Pick a Strategic Time – The best time to nap depends on when you last woke up. Typically, you will want to nap after about 6-7 hours, so if you work up at 7:00 AM, you would ideally want to nap around 2 PM. Keep in mind that you can nap to make up for lost sleep, or to prepare for a night when you know you won’t sleep well. If you’re napping preventatively, take a quick nap 6-7 hours before you plan to sleep for longer.
  • Strive for the Afternoon – If you find yourself getting groggy in the afternoon, it’s not because you’re overworked or under-rested. The body’s natural circadian rhythms cause us to feel fatigued around mid-afternoon. In fact, there is even research suggesting that a brief afternoon nap is part of our natural programming (even if they’re not part of our natural schedule). For most people, the afternoon is both the easiest time to fall asleep and the best time to recoup some rest.
  • Pick the Right Spot – If you’re able to control where you nap, make sure it’s a space conducive to sleeping in the day time. Pick a room that is dark, quiet, and cool. If you can’t find the perfect conditions, consider using an eye mask, earplugs, or a white noise machine. Beyond that, sleep as you normally would – get under a big blanket, put on a thick pair of socks, sleep on your side, whatever traditionally helps you sleep better.
  • Set an Alarm – When you’re feeling especially tired, it’s too easy to fall asleep for a nap and wake up a lot later than you intended. Make sure you set an alarm before you begin winding down. Research has shown that the best naps last for 10-20 minutes. Tempting as it may be to steal another 10 minutes (or an extra hour), it won’t leave you feeling more refreshed. Naps that last longer than 20 minutes can put you into a deep sleep that’s harder to wake from, leaves you feeling groggy, and contributes to reduced performance after napping.
  • Grab a Post-Nap Coffee – Drinking some caffeine in the form of coffee, tea, or an energy drink soon when you wake up can increase the feeling of alertness and attention you feel after a good nap. You might even consider drinking your caffeine before you try to nap. It takes around 20 minutes for the effects of caffeine to kick in. So if you’re able to finish your coffee, get straight to sleep, and wake up at your alarm, you might feel especially energized right as you wake up. Consider this next-level napping.

Don’ts

We can be our own worst enemies when it comes to sleep. Make sure you don’t do these things as you’re trying to nap:

  • Force Sleep to Come – For some people, it’s a real challenge to nap successfully. If you’re one of those people and none of the tips above seem to help, don’t force the issue. Try to get better sleep at night, and make sure you’re drinking plenty of water and getting some physical activity during the day. There are other ways to fight fatigue besides lying down for a nap where you’ll never fall asleep.
  • Depend Entirely on Naps – Some people have to nap as part of their sleep routine. For most of us, though, it’s an occasional occurrence. If you find yourself napping more than usual, or wanting to because of routine fatigue, it could be a sign you’re not sleeping well at night. You also shouldn’t try to rely on naps as a cure for insomnia. For optimal physical and mental health, you should ideally get 8 hours of sustained sleep each night. If you’re not, it could be a sign your mattress is worn out, or your nightly sleep routine needs adjustment.
  • Pick the Worst Times – If you drank a big cup of coffee an hour ago, it’s going to be a lot harder to nap. Try to plan when, where, and how you’ll take a nap at least a few hours in advance. You should also avoid napping in places like public transportation or your job (unless this perk happens to be allowed in your workplace). If you have kids or others around your house, let them know you’re trying to nap so you won’t be disturbed.

Rest Easy Night and Day with Sit n’ Sleep

Maybe you want to nap more or less. Either way, you might need a new mattress. Daytime fatigue is a strong sign you’re not sleeping enough at night, possibly because your mattress is past its prime. If you’re struggling to nap, it could also be because your mattress is uncomfortable. Visit one of the 38 Sit n’ Sleep superstores around Southern California to experience what a brand-new mattress engineered to your sleep style feels like. They’re more comfortable than you can believe at a price lower than you would ever expect. Find a store near you or explore our website for more information. If you have questions about anything along the way, please call us at 800-908-0354.