How Long Before Bed Should I Stop Drinking Coffee? And 3 Other Pressing Sleep Questions, Answered

There are two kinds of people in this world: Those who sleep with socks on, and those who don’t. But which one is right? If you’ve ever wondered about that or any of these other pressing questions about sleep, good news — we’ve got some answers for you. They might be a little more complicated than you might like, but hey — complicated answers are better than no answers, right?

Here’s the deal: Online bedding retailer ShopBedding.com recently spoke to 12 different sleep experts to get their opinions on eight commonly asked questions about our nighttime zzzz’s. They range from the expected (what are the most common causes of sleep deprivation) to the seemingly silly yet ultimately important (the aforementioned socks conundrum) — and even though there’s still a lot we don’t understand about sleep, there are still a lot of useful tips and tricks to be found. Not only that, but ShopBedding.com went and assembled the general answers they found into a handy-dandy infographic — and you all know how much I love a good infographic.

Here are some of the questions and answers I found to be the most interesting; scroll down to see the infographic, and head on over to ShopBedding.com for the full explanation. But hey, don’t worry if your sleep habits are a little… unusual; you might just be sleeping like a genius. Nothing wrong with that. 

Also, yes, that is a totally gratuitous picture of sleeping cats up top. Aren't they cute?

When Should You Stop Drinking Coffee?

The short answer: About six and a half hours before you go to bed. That’s an average, though, so it — like many of the answers to the other questions seen here — vary depending on the person. The shortest time frame suggested was four hours, while the longest was 12. If I learned nothing else from my experiment with UP Coffee, it’s that caffeine has a tendency to stick around in your system for a ridiculous amount of time; so, plan your coffee (and tea, and soda, and…) consumption accordingly.

When Should You Stop Eating?

This one’s a little more straightforward: Between two and three hours before bed. Eating too soon before bed stimulates your metabolism when it should be slowing down, which can make it difficult to sleep. There are a few caveats, though: Kids can eat before bed without any problems, and pre-bedtime snacks are permissible for adults (as long as the portion stays, y’know, snack-sized, not meal-sized).

Does the Full Moon Affect How Well You Sleep?

Maybe, but maybe not. Scientific evidence says that the full moon shouldn’t affect your sleep at all; anecdotal evidence, on the other hand, shows that an awful lot of people have trouble sleeping when there’s a full moon. Interesting, no?

Should I Sleep with Socks On?

(Side note: LOOK! A DOG WEARING SOCKS! THAT IS ADORABLE!)

The big question about going to bed while wearing socks generally focuses around whether the practice will help you sleep better, or whether it will make you sleep worse. Ultimately, it depends on both the person and the temperature. If you overheat easily, it’s probably not a good idea to sleep with socks on; if, however, you’re often chilly, it might help. I’m usually in the “overheating” category — although there have been times that I’ve gone to sleep with socks on because my apartment’s heater was on the fritz, only to wake up in the morning and discover that I (or possibly a group of strange, sock-stealing elves) had seemingly taken the off in the middle of the night. Do with that what you will.

Check out the infographic below, and head on over to ShopBedding.com for more.

8 Questions for Sleep Experts
Images: tim_norris/Flickr; Giphy (4); ShopBedding.com

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