Creating a Sleep Sanctuary
The importance of a good night’s sleep has hit the headlines again recently. Poor or irregular sleep is linked to a myriad of health problems and can affect almost every aspect of our lives.
Dr Neil Stanley, independent sleep expert for luxury British bed maker, Vispring, offers advice to interior designers and their clients about choosing the right bed and creating the ideal environment to ensure a good quality sleep.
Sleep is vital for good physical, mental and emotional health – consistently bad sleep is associated with an increased risk of heart disease, diabetes and obesity; lack of motivation and alertness; and mood swings, irritability and depression.
But it isn’t the quantity of our rest that is important, it’s the quality. Everyone’s sleep requirement is different – it’s a myth that we all need eight hours per night. Some people will function well on three hours, while others require 11. To me, a good night’s sleep is one that leaves you feeling refreshed in the morning and more productive throughout the day.
1. A comfortable bed
The right bed is essential for a good night’s sleep – according to research by The Sleep Council, a quality mattress will give you an extra hour’s sleep. A comfortable and supportive bed will give your clients the best chance of sleeping soundly throughout the night. I sleep on a pocket-sprung Vispring bed – the tension of the springs is suited to my weight to ensure I am properly supported and it is filled with all natural materials to help keep me at a comfortable temperature. Mattresses with individually pocketed springs offer the best support; they work to isolate any movements, meaning that if one partner is tossing and turning during the night, the other shouldn’t be affected.”
How to Help Clients to Choose the Perfect Mattress
- Take them to a trusted retailer that has a variety of beds on display. Tell them not to be shy to try! Ensure they take off coats and shoes and lie down fully
- Encourage clients to test different spring tensions, fillings and sizes; if the bed is for two, both partners must test together
- Clients should test at least three beds for 15 minutes each, lying in the full range of their natural sleeping positions
- As a rough guide, Vispring suggests that people weighing below 11 stone should opt for a soft tension mattress, those between 11 and 16 stone should choose a medium, anyone between 16 and 20 stone will need a firm mattress
- If the mattress they’re testing is too firm, they will be able to easily slip their hand between the mattress and the hollow of their back. If it’s too soft, they won’t be able to slide their hand under their back at all
2. Create a sleep sanctuary
Bedrooms should be quiet, dark and the correct temperature – around 16-18oC is perfect, it’ll feel warmer under the duvet. Good ventilation is key for sleep, so ensure it’s factored in.
You should also specify the biggest possible bed for the room – studies have shown that even a slightly bigger bed can make a huge difference to sleep quality. If the bed is shared, a bigger surface area will minimise the disturbance caused by a partner’s movements. If the bedroom isn’t particularly large, consider a divan with drawers for storage to allow more space for a bigger bed.
For more advise on choosing the perfect bed, please contact [email protected] or call 01752 366 311 ext. 111. On Twitter, follow Vispring (@Vispring) and Dr Neil Stanley (@VispringTips).
Written by Vispring’s independent sleep expert, Dr Neil Stanley