Monthly Archives: February 2013

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Sleeping Cap

sleeping cap

As far as most people are concerned, the sleeping cap is a historical item rather than something that’s relevant to people in need of a few hours’ worth of sleep in the modern era. In some ways, they’re correct. Most people do not need them in today’s world filled with modern conveniences such as central heating and air conditioning. That doesn’t mean, however, that they aren’t at all useful today. Many retailers still sell them today.

The History of the Sleeping Cap

While it’s not exactly known when or, specifically, where the sleeping cap (often referred to as a nightcap, sleep hat, or sleep bonnet) originated, at one time, sleeping caps were worn because fires died down and homes were incredibly cold during the late hours of night or wee hours of morning.  Since the thought was a large chunk of a body’s heat escapes through the head, it made perfect sense to keep the head covered in an effort to retain body heat so you can remain warm throughout the night.

Sleeping with Socks On

socks on in bed

One of the most important things you need in order to properly function and have good physical and mental health, is an adequate amount of “good sleep” each night. And, as crazy as it might sound to some, sleeping with socks on can make a surprising difference in the quality and quantity of sleep you get at night. But, why can it make so much of a difference, and is it the right move for you to make?

Why Wear Socks While Sleeping?

According to Dr. Oz, turning down the thermostat in your home and sleeping with socks on is a great way to trick your body. What happens is your body believes it’s hot, which forces a reduction in your core temperature. The end result is that because your body believes it is cooler, you are better able to fall asleep and remain asleep.

Sleeping After Back Surgery

back surgery

Having difficulty sleeping after back surgery or spinal surgery, like lumbar spine surgery, discectomy, disc replacement, laminectomy, or spinal fusion is completely normal. Your body has been through trauma as a result of surgery. Additionally, you may be dealing with pain, a sore incision, and simply not being able to get comfortable in order to sleep. However, getting enough sleep, particular uninterrupted continuous sleep, can help your body heal faster, getting you back to your normal routine faster. That said, here are a few tips, as given by medical experts, to help with your sleeping after back surgery.

Best Foam Mattress

foam mattress

When you’re in the market for a mattress, you understand that this is an investment. You don’t want to waste money on mattresses that are not going to last for quite a while or make a purchase from a mattress seller that doesn’t offer a “Sleep Tight Guarantee”.  More importantly, you don’t want to make that investment only to suffer from a severe case of buyer’s remorse after trying to get your first night’s sleep on your new mattress. In other words, you want the best foam mattress your money can buy.

Foam mattresses are one of the fastest growing alternative to a traditional innerspring mattress. They not only provide superior support and cut-above comfort, but provide an exceptional ability to contour to your body.

Best Firm Mattress

mattress firmness

Whether you’re looking for the best firm mattress on the market today or the best mattress for back pain or some other, very specific, sleep problem you’re struggling with, it’s worth getting to know a little more about your options before you buy. Mattresses vary a great deal from one model to the next in quality and in price. Take your time and avoid making any hasty decisions that might involve the purchase of a mattress you’re not sure to fall in love with and that will last for many years.

natural latex mattress

What Should You Look for When Buying a Mattress?

Buying the right mattress for your unique sleep needs is a great way to get a better night’s sleep. Just as Goldilocks discovered in the classic fairy tale, a bed that was too soft was just as uncomfortable as a bed that was too hard. However, once she found the “just right” bed she was able to drift off fast asleep. With so many different styles, types, brands, and price points to consider  – way more options than Goldilocks — it’s easy to get a little overwhelmed by the job in front of you. The features below are some of the most important if you’re intent on getting a good night’s sleep.

Sleeping After Shoulder Surgery

shoulder surgery

Particularly after major surgery, sleep disturbances are commonplace. And having trouble sleeping after shoulder surgery is no different. According to the British Journal of Anaesthesia, the body goes through a metabolic and hormonal response to the trauma of surgery referred to as the “surgical stress response”.  This response, along with other post-surgery side effects such as pain, fever, sore incision, anesthesia, insomnia, and medications, can disrupt both the quality and quantity of sleep a person receives after shoulder surgery.

How to Sleep During Pregnancy

pregnant woman sleeping

It’s comes as no surprise that the physical discomfort and hormonal changes associated with pregnancy can wreak havoc on a woman’s quality of sleep. And if you are experiencing disturbed sleep during pregnancy you’re not alone; 78 percent of women indicated problems sleeping during pregnancy in a National Sleep Foundation (NSF) poll. Moreover, while your body is growing your bundle of joy, you’re likely to have sleep changes during all three trimesters of your pregnancy, according to the NSF.

Best Mattress for the Money

woman holding money

When the time comes to buy a new mattress you want to feel certain you’re actually getting the best mattress for the money, whether its the best mattress for back pain or best mattress for insomnia. That’s why it’s a good idea to do a little bit of research before you buy—especially if you suffer from difficulties sleeping on a regular basis. At the same time, you don’t want to invest so much time and worry into the process of choosing a mattress that you’re actually losing sleep over it either.

These tips will help you find the best mattress to meet your needs without giving up precious sleep in the process.

How Prescription Drugs Affect Sleep

prescription drugs

The US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health report, Effects of Drugs on Sleep, states that: “Chronic use or abuse of certain drugs may lead to the development of substance-related sleep disorders. Primary sleep disorders, such as apnea, periodic movement disorders, and parasomnias, may be exacerbated by various drugs.”

According to a Harvard Report on how External Factors Influence Sleep, the impact of prescription medications on sleep varies from one type to the next. For instance, beta blockers, which are commonly used to reduce blood pressure, cause decreased slow-wave sleep and in important REM sleep, while increasing sleepiness during the daytime hours. Alpha blockers, also used to reduce blood pressure and to treat some prostate conditions, also lead to decreases in REM sleep as well as boosts to daytime sleepiness. Some antidepressants, known as SSRIs, are believed to actually promote insomnia. The long-term impact of other antidepressant drugs on sleep are, as of yet, unknown.

Sleep and Aging

elderly woman sleeping

Just as our hair will likely turn grey and wrinkles will probably adorn our faces, as we age many of us can expect to encounter sleep changes.

These sleep and aging changes can result in waking up throughout the night, becoming sleepy earlier, and awakening earlier than we used to.

Sleep and Aging Statistics

As many as 50 percent of seniors experience some sort of sleep disturbance as they embark on their golden years.  And according to the National Institute of Aging, a good number of seniors are not getting enough sleep. One of the reasons that many seniors are sleep deprived is in their trouble in falling asleep. More than a third of women and 13 percent of men reported taking more than an half an hour (30 minutes) to fall asleep (sleep latency), according to a study the institute cited.