Tis the season to be jolly – but how will that festive bubbly affect your sleep?
Champagne breakfasts, pub lunches and gourmet dinners finished with liqueur chocolates and brandy butter – there is ample opportunity to indulge in a tipple or two over the party season.
And while it is the season to be jolly, alcohol can affect more than just how bad your headache is the morning after; it can interfere with your normal sleep pattern and affect the quality of your shuteye.
Not much is needed either to upset your bedtime routine with experts suggesting that just two drinks can make a difference. Having a tipple and falling straight into a deep slumber means you miss out on the important first phases of REM sleep.
As the effects of the drink fade your body goes from deep to REM sleep, which is easier to wake up from during the night, so you can end up having less shuteye than normal, leaving you feeling tired rather than refreshed.
Drinking can also make you want to go to the loo more frequently, the urge for which can often strike in the middle of the night. And as it’s a diuretic, alcohol also encourages your body to lose extra fluid through sweat, leaving you dehydrated and gasping for a glass of water at 2am.
It can be tempting to have a beverage before bed to help you drift off quickly but drinking immediately before you go to sleep can, as shown, end up having the opposite effect. If you like a tipple before turning in aim to drink it a couple of hours before you turn off the lights, which will give your body a chance to process it.
On average it takes an hour for the body to process one unit of alcohol – a 25ml spirit measure, about half a small glass of wine or just under a pint of beer. But everybody is different so this time can vary hugely from person to person.
Even if you haven’t had a drink, alcohol can still disrupt your sleep. If your partner is a snorer and has indulged in a beverage or two the alcohol will relax their muscles, including those in their throat and mouth, meaning they are more likely to vibrate, and cause more noise.
We at Sussex Beds are passionate about matching the right bed to each of our individual customers to help ensure they get the best night’s rest possible.
So as well as cutting out drink just before you turn in, we also recommend keeping away from caffeine late in the evening, and try and make sure your bedroom is at the right temperature – a cool 18 degrees will ensure you don’t get too hot in the night.
Having a comfortable bed, perfectly matched to your needs will also ensure you nod off quickly and easily – and this is where the Sussex Beds team can really help. As true sleep experts and stockists of a huge range of mattresses, bed frames and headboards, as well as bedding, we can find the right combination to ensure sweet dreams every night for you and your family.