Sleep is strange – we all need it, and we often can’t resist it – yet we know very little about what happens to us once we do shut our eyes. Sleep is an important part of our lives, so let’s take a look at some of society’s most pervasive myths. Do you believe any of these misconceptions about sleep?
- Saturday Catch-Up: After a long week, you may look forward to the weekend to catch up on lost hours of shut-eye. Sadly, sleep can’t be “banked” – that is, sleeping longer on Saturday doesn’t make up for any of the damage caused by lost sleep throughout the past week. Your best solution is to strive for 7-8 hours of sleep a night – every night.
- Too Old for Sleep: A common myth that many people believe is that older adults need less sleep. Statistically, senior citizens wake up more often during the night – but they still require the same amount of sleep as their younger friends and family members.
- Counting Makes You Drowsy: The process of counting sheep represents a popular method of falling asleep, but does it work? Experts say it does not – in fact, they point to evidence that counting sheep actually keeps you awake and alert. Put on some soft music instead, and be prepared to drift off.
- Nightcaps are Beneficial: Alcoholic drinks tend to make you feel tired, so many people assume that a few drinks before bed must facilitate falling asleep. However, the process of alcohol metabolization goes on for hours and is more likely to disrupt a full night’s rest than encourage it. Processing alcohol through your system reduces rapid eye movement (or REM sleep), which is essential.
- Firm Mattresses are a Necessity: Another common sleep myth is that a firm mattress is good for your posture, as well as your comfort. The truth is that the right level of mattress firmness (or softness) is a personal preference that varies significantly from person to person. Testing several types of mattresses is the best way to determine your own level of perfection.
- Turkeys Put You to Sleep: Each Thanksgiving, the turkey gets blamed for making everyone around the table. Although turkey contains tryptophan – which can inspire sleepiness – it has no more power to do so than any other type of meat or poultry. The more likely scenario is that the holiday caused you to eat and relax more than you would normally.
- Cheese Causes Nightmares: Like turkey, cheese often gets blamed for sleep-related issues – in this case, eating cheese too close to bedtime may result in nightmares. However, there is no evidence to support this old wive’s tale. Even so, you should avoid eating anything within about 3 hours of bedtime for optimal sleep quality.
- Milk Causes Drowsiness: Does a glass of warm milk double as a sleep aid? Unfortunately, probably not – although recollections from childhood may bring comfort to those looking to wind down and relax.
Quick Facts from the Better Sleep Council
- Two-thirds of American adults (that’s 164 million of us) don’t replace our mattresses for a decade or more. However, sleep experts recommend that we replace our mattress every 7 years.
- 43% of American adults think that sleeping late on the weekend will provide our bodies with the sleep we lost in the last 5 days. It won’t.
- 61% of adults in this country believe that a firm mattress is the best solution for an aching back. While most people do sleep better on a firmer mattress, that is a matter of preference.
- 122 million American adults still believe that removing mattress tags is against the law. The truth is that consumers are free to remove the mattress tag after purchase – even if 53% of men and 45% of women are still afraid of being arrested if they de-tag their mattresses.
- 52% of men and 46% of women believe that they do not dream on a regular basis. Sleep experts tell us that dreaming is much more frequent than we realize – we simply don’t remember many of our dreams.
Here is a Sleep Fact That is 100% True
A great night’s sleep is essential for everyone, including guests and visitors. Installing a Murphy bed is a fantastic way to ensure that anyone who spends time at your home has access to a full size, quality bed to rest up at night.
Call Monarch Murphy Beds today for your initial consultation. Our reputation for exceptional customer service is no myth!