6 Things You May Not Realize Are Getting In The Way Of A Good Night's Sleep

And more importantly, how to fix it.

by BDG Studios
Tired woman lying in bed can't sleep late at night with insomnia. Asian girl with funny face sick or...

Humans are programmed to disagree with each other — and we’re really, really good at it.

But if there’s one thing we all agree on, it’s that we could all use more sleep.

According to the CDC, one in three adults don’t get enough sleep on a regular basis. And the sleep we are getting isn’t always great quality.

If you’re logging more than seven hours of sleep per night but still waking up exhausted or feeling foggy throughout the day, the sleep you’re getting might actually be Junk Sleep — or sleep that’s so low quality, it doesn’t help restore your brain so you can function properly the next day.

Forgetting your lunch, making silly mistakes at work, or feeling extra irritable are all byproducts of Junk Sleep — as is that all-day grogginess even multiple cups of coffee can’t shake.

There are lots of ways to mess with your sleep, and most of us already have bad habits we don’t even realize are creating problems tomorrow.

To help put Junk Sleep to bed and ensure you’re functioning at your best, we partnered with Mattress Firm to highlight six things you may not realize are getting in the way of a quality night’s rest.

1. Sleeping With Your Phone

Resisting the urge to scroll before bedtime is easier said than done, but that pesky blue light that glows from your cell phone screen stops melatonin production, which is the hormone that controls your circadian rhythm. The content you’re double-tapping can also increase your alertness, making it more difficult to get into the drowsy state necessary to fall asleep, not to mention giving you scroll-regret (e.g., exhaustion) the next morning. Avoid sleeping with the enemy, and leave your cell phone in a drawer or on a dresser across the room while you rest.

2. Your Mattress

While The Princess and the Pea is just a fairy tale, sleeping on the wrong mattress (or one that’s old and has lost its structural support) can have serious consequences on your sleep quality. Fortunately, Mattress Firm’s MattressMatcher™ hooks you up with mattress options based on your sleep needs. Only Mattress Firm has the MattressMatcher™ tool, which offers results tailored to align with your desired mattress size, comfort level, preferred sleeping positions, and sleep disruptors. By answering just a few simple questions, you’ll get a variety of mattress recommendations from Mattress Firm’s Sleep Experts®, plus a list of mattress quality recommendations to keep in mind when shopping. For example, if you suffer from sleep apnea, MattressMatcher™ will suggest adding an adjustable base to your list of mattress must-haves to help alleviate some of your symptoms. Mattress Firm Sleep Experts® have 200 hours of training each, so you can rest easy knowing that the mattresses you’ve matched with are expert-approved.

3. Feeling Too Hot or Too Cold

We’ve all woken up from a deep sleep in the middle of the night feeling sweaty after being stuck under a thick comforter for too long. But did you know that the temperature of your bedroom can also affect how fast you fall asleep, and how restorative it can be? That’s because your core body temperature follows a circadian rhythm, meaning it rises and falls across a 24-hour cycle. A drop in core body temperature signals to our bodies that it’s time to sleep. Setting your bedroom thermostat to be between 60 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit creates an ideal environment for restorative sleep. You may also want to consider a cooling mattress or pillow, which can limit heat retention throughout the night.

4. A Glass of Wine Before Bed

We all know that having too much to drink can seriously start our mornings on the wrong side of the bed, but even a glass of wine or two before hitting the hay can cause some snooze-related side effects. Even though alcohol may help you fall asleep more quickly, it actually reduces REM sleep, which is important for memory consolidation. Disruptions in REM sleep may cause daytime drowsiness and poor concentration — so it may be best to avoid the bubbly before bedtime.

5. Having The Wrong Pillow

Pillows are crucial for providing support to your head and neck as you sleep, which can greatly affect how your body feels the next day. A good pillow should relax and relieve tension as soon as you lie down — so if you’re waking up with neck pain or struggling with episodes of snoring or sleep apnea, it may be time to invest in a new pillow. Mattress Firm’s Sleep Experts® can match you with a pillow in-store and online based on your sleep position and preferences so you can get proper head support, keep your body in a healthy alignment, and get deeper, restorative rest.

6. Sleeping With Your Fur Baby

Sleeping with your pet may be cozy and sweet, but it can also cause you to miss some major Z’s. When your pet moves in bed, you’re likely to move as well — even if you don’t notice it. Humans are also over four times as likely to wake up when their pet sharing the bed with them is active. While the consequences of sleeping with your pet are relatively mild, it might be best to splurge on a pet bed. Researchers found that having a dog sleep in your bedroom, but not on your bed, doesn’t impact your sleep to the same extent.

We can all agree that it’s about time you got some better sleep — the kind you get from a bed that actually matches you and your sleep preferences. With Mattress Firm’s low-price guarantee, you’ll be able to unjunk your sleep at an affordable price. Skeptical? You can try out your mattress for 120 nights so you can be sure you’ve made the right choice. Stop dreaming about better sleep and make it a reality by heading over to your nearest Mattress Firm, and find out how good your sleep can be when you’re sleeping on a mattress selected just for you.