Like so many others you might find it difficult to get a good night’s sleep, which is why how you sleep may be low on your priority list. If you fall asleep on the couch while watching Netflix – great! It’s been ages since you’ve slept that well.
But despite the ‘good night’s rest’ you think you got, the crick in your neck and your sore back is telling you otherwise. The couch isn’t, after all, the most ideal place to fall asleep. Especially if you did so in an awkward position that twisted your neck or back, putting pressure on them that will haunt you for days.
Besides falling asleep on the couch, here are some other common sleeping mistakes that people make.
Sleeping on Your Stomach
It’s hard to imagine that the way you sleep can be an indicator of your personality, but research done by the UK’s Sleep Assessment and Advisory Service claims this is the case. According to their research, people who sleep on their stomachs (also known as ‘The Freefaller’ position) tend to be outwardly social and confident but actually lack the ability to handle criticism.
If this is you, then it might be time for a personality switch. Sleeping on your stomach forces you to twist your neck to the side of your pillow just so you can breathe. Twisting your neck in one direction for 6 to 8 hours straight can cause you a lot of pain and discomfort, and you might find yourself looking for relief from chronic neck pain if you keep it up.
You’re Only Using a Pillow for Your Head
For the other sleeping positions, like on your back or your side, you should look into using a small pillow underneath (on your back) or between (on your side) your knees to relieve pressure off your back. For instance, if you’re not using a pillow between your knees while you sleep on your side, your leg can pull your spine out of alignment and cause stress on your hips and lower back.
You Opted Out of a Bedtime Long Ago
Do you think it’s just kids that need a bedtime? Apparently not: adults should have a bedtime too. Your body runs off an internal clock, or rhythm, which you can set by performing daily routines, like eating meals at the same time every day which in turn will regulate when your body digests.
The same goes for sleeping. Go to bed at the same time every day and your body will begin to expect and prepare for that time with various chemical reactions that tell you it’s time to sleep. This is also known as the sleep/wake cycle, and can be a powerful tool for helping you get a good night’s rest.
When Are You Doing it Right?
If you wake up in the morning feeling refreshed and energetic, then you’ve slept well. Don’t fall for the misconception that just because you got 6 to 8 hours of sleep that you should be fine. Your body will tell you when you’ve slept well, and if it’s saying you didn’t, it’s time to find out what you might be doing wrong.