We’ve all had those nights tossing and turning unable to sleep, but can’t think what the cause might be. And for some, this problem is persistent, existing in the form of chronic insomnia.
But why is it that some of us are better are recovering from periods of dodgy sleep than others? According to new research, it has something to do with how long we spend in bed.
The study carried out at the University of Pennsylvania said: ‘If someone goes to sleep at 11pm and wakes up at 5am (versus an intended 7:30am), they [should] start their day, rather than lie awake in bed.
‘Electing to stay awake (rather than staying in bed trying to sleep) is not only a productive strategy for an individual with acute insomnia, but is also one that is formally deployed as part of cognitive behavioural therapy for chronic insomnia.’
In other words, rather than trying to fight it by lying awake in bed for hours, get up, get on with your day, and try again later.
Director of the Penn Behavioral Sleep Medicine Program Michael Perlis PhD said: ‘Those with insomnia typically extend their sleep opportunity (aka lie in bed for longer).
‘They go to bed early, get out of bed late, and they nap.
‘While this seems a reasonable thing to do, and may well be in the short-term, the problem in the longer term is it creates a mismatch between the individual’s current sleep ability and their current sleep opportunity; this fuels insomnia.’
So next time you have a bad night’s sleep, don’t try and make up for it by napping for the rest of the day. Stick to schedule - go back to bed when you usually would, and try again.
What do you think? Is a good night’s sleep as simple as spending less time in bed? Tweet us at @YahooStyleUK.