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10 Misconceptions about Sleep

Misconceptions about sleep
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If you are anything like me, then you have probably heard a thousand times about many myths and legends related to sleep. However, you should be careful because some ideas that are shared around are actually counter-productive towards sleep. As more and more people are suffering from sleep disorders, it is essential to unravel the truth from the prejudices about sleep, and to go back to having good sleeping habits.

The hours of sleep before midnight count double

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Among the ideas that one regularly reads about sleep and its quality, the one according to which the hours of sleep before midnight are worth double really isn’t true. What does that truly mean? Should we really fall asleep before midnight to enjoy a real restful sleep? In reality, having a proper, recharging night has absolutely nothing to do with time and whether you go to sleep before or after midnight. It is not a matter of time. The first hours of sleep are certainly more restorative than the following, but that happens to be true only when one one goes to bed at 10 pm or after midnight.

Related Reading: 18 Pros and Cons of Adjustable Beds

You have to sleep 8 hours a night

It has been estimated that the amount of sleep necessary for an adult is about 8 hours per night. But that does not mean we should all sleep 8 hours each night. This is only an average. Some need fewer hours of sleep, and others more. A good restorative night should allow you to feel rested and refreshed when you wake up in the morning, as well as enable you to stay focused all day.

It is better not to eat or to have a light meal before sleeping

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We often hear that skipping dinner is not important. It is really recommended to have a light meal in the evening. But not eating or not eating enough can cause nocturnal awakenings and snacking cravings. It is advisable to drink a glass of milk before sleeping. Milk contains tryptophan, an amino acid linked to the production of serotonin, a molecule that promotes relaxation and sleep. Starchy foods promote the production of insulin, which has an important role to play in tryptophan uptake.

Sleeping with plants is bad for sleep

No doubt you have already read or heard that plants were to be banished from the bedroom. They would suck up all the oxygen in the room and then become toxic. But it is actually an urban legend. A plant sucks much less CO2 than a pet or just your spouse! If installing a greenhouse in one’s bedroom is not recommended, having one or two plants near one’s bed is of no consequence and is therefore safe. Some plants even happen to have a beneficial impact. This is the case of depolluting plants such as Ficus Benjamina or bamboo palm.

You have to go to bed earlier to get up early

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It would seem logical. But that is not necessarily the case. If it is possible, and even highly recommended, it is much better for you to adopt a regular schedule of bedtime and sunrise hours. Don’t forget that there are early-to-late, late-night, early bird and late-risers. Which means that it is not by forcing yourself to go to bed earlier than usual that you will solve your waking problems. Our internal clock is genetically programmed, and it is completely up to you to discover and learn how it works, in order to be able to respect it and help your body get the sleep it needs to function properly.

You have to sleep with your head towards the north

Here is a particular prejudice conveyed by Feng Shui, a Chinese geomancy. It would be sleeping with your head aligned with the north-south magnetic axis of the Earth, which would promote a better quality of your sleep. But no scientific proof has ever been brought to confirm this theory. Some studies have even rather denied it …

Count the sheep to sleep

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Who has never tried, while being a child at least, to count sheep to try to fall asleep in case of insomnia?
Well it is time for you to forget this idea! Counting the sheep or some other animal will not help you fall into the arms of Morpheus. It’s actually the opposite. Counting the sheep stimulates your brain and therefore does not put it in good conditions to help you fall sleep.

Dreaming is a guarantee of a good sleep

Can dreams be considered as proof of a good night’s sleep? Some say it. But that is not the case! Dreams are formed during the phases of REM sleep, a very light sleep during which the brain is almost as active as when we are awake. These are not the most restorative phases of sleep, quite the contrary.

If you feel sleepy at some point during your day, then it means you are not getting enough sleep

We have talked many times about this before in our articles. It is completely normal for you to feel tired and sleepy at some point in daytime, even after getting the amount of sleep you usually need. As we said before, your body’s circadian rhythm has to to do two complete circles every day, hence why you tend to feel sleepy around 1 or 2PM. Moreover, sleepiness can also be caused by the use of some medicaments, or stress, etc.

Hitting the snooze button is a good trick for you to get more sleep

You may regard your snooze button as your life savior but we are here to  sadly announce the opposite: snoozing is everything but good for you and your sleeping habits. It actually makes things much worse than they could be. You may be thinking that snoozing helps you sleep some more, but what it truly does is that it allows you to fall in a very deep sleep then wake you out of it while startling you, which has an awful impact on your mood as well as on your condition.

11 Tips to have a refreshing morning

Have a refreshing morning
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Every day it’s the same thing: you turn off the 6 alarms of your alarm clock with your eyes still closed and you roll up again in your duvet on your oh so comfortable adjustable bed. Nevertheless, sooner or later, you will have to get up!

Why is it so hard to wake up peacefully in the morning? And why does our body’s batteries feel empty after 8 hours of sleep? Especially in winter, where the lack of brightness makes us want to extend our nights. A shower, a good breakfast … and some extra tasks are enough to get you up on the right foot and give you a refreshing morning!

11 tips to get more energy in the morning

Do not skip breakfast!

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This can not be emphasized enough: breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Yet about 15% of people skip it at least once a week. Lack of time, not being very hungry … The reasons to start your day without taking your breakfast are various. But it’s essential to give your body the energy it needs after a whole night of fasting. In addition, studies show that skipping breakfast can have some significant health consequences.

What are the effects of no breakfast?

  • A body that resists insulin and the rate of diabetes skyrocketing.
  • The risk of death from coronary heart disease and heart attack increases by 27%.
  • A temptation to eating snacks and junk food.
  • An increase in cholesterol (thanks cravings!).
  • An increase in the rate of hypertension.
  • A tired body, deprived of its morning “fuel”.
  • Unwanted stress due to fatigue.

Eat proteins to prevent hunger

Proteins basically serve as cement for your body. They are found in all our cells, such as skin, hair, nails and even bones. In short, they remain essential to the proper development of the body. So, the ideal breakfast for an adult should be 13% protein and 10% for a child.

A good protein intake, less caloric than slow sugars can help you resist the temptation of snacking. Thanks to them, you will be able to resist until lunch break!

Meats, very rich in protein, are little consumed during breakfast, except when under the form of bacon is some countries. They are actually often replaced by dairy products (yogurt, cottage cheese, glass of milk) and eggs.

Eat fruits for vitamins!

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Fruits contain a large number of vitamins, minerals, fibers and zinc. Whether they are eaten dry, fresh, or in juices. Fruits are a natural energy cocktail that your body needs every day. And why not eat several fruits at once, preparing a delicious smoothie? You can also make a small compote, certainly sweet, and at the same time full of fruits.

You can also get yours fruity vitamins through:

  • Juices (pure and without added sugars): oranges, grapefruit, pineapple, etc.
  • Apricots, prune or raisins for the tone.
  • Fresh fruits: kiwi (good for complexion), apple, banana, etc.

Eat slow sugars to avoid snacking

All athletes know the trick: You must consume slow sugars in the morning to boost your energy! In fact, the body assimilates these foods more slowly, which gives it a reserve to make up for the 11-hour strokes.

Choose bread with whole grain cereals because they contain complex carbohydrates that keep you going all morning.

Allow yourself to eat some fats

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Breakfast is the meal of the day where everything is allowed. So please have fun! If you take the time to eat it deliciously, then there is no reason to deprive yourself of a small buttered toast. Consumed in moderation, the fat has no effect on your weight. Butter even provides a very significant supplement in vitamin A.

You can also spread generously, but sparingly:

  • salted butter;
  • jam ;
  • chestnut cream;
  • honey (excellent for your throat).

Recharge with light

Why, in winter more than in summer, do we find it harder to get out of bed? Well it is because without light, it’s even harder to open your eyes (and yes, besides, it’s cold, and that definitely doesn’t help!). Only here, the light is essential to get up smoothly and on the right foot.
If you can not fall asleep without total darkness, open your curtains and shutters every morning when your alarm rings. Then you hang out a few minutes in bed, but the light wakes you up and it’s less difficult to start the day!

Choose a hot drink

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It is advisable to accompany your breakfast with a drink, in order to rehydrate the body after a night’s sleep. Rich in amino acids and vitamins B, C, E, tea is a good companion in the morning. Consumed without sugar and cream, it has the significant advantage of not having any calories. In addition, it is an excellent antioxidant and an excellent fat burner.

Choose the variety that suits you: green tea, black tea, red tea, white tea … and if you really do not like tea, choose a fruit juice, a cup of hot chocolate or  coffee.

Take a shower (but not too hot!)

When you get out of bed, nothing beats a shower to wake up gently. But the trap is there: a shower that is too hot can do the opposite and make you lazy! After the difficulty of getting out of bed, there is the one of getting out of the shower … Even if it is cold outside, your body will get used to the ambient temperature, so give it some time.

For a dynamic shower, start with a trickle of hot water. Then lower the temperature a few degrees.

Come on, that’s stimulating!

Walk instead of driving your car

Traffic jams, stress, delays … There is nothing worse than your car or public transport to work. If you can, take some time in your day to walk.

A few exercises and a breath of fresh air will give you the energy to start your day full of energy! Take the opportunity to breathe, relax, meditate, and do not keep your head down looking at your phone! 

And if you really do not like walking, cycling is also a good option.

Do some push-ups

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Muscle strengthening exercises are easy to do at home, and even in a small space, so push-ups are ideal to get motivated after waking up.

Even without doing it with a powerful rhythm, push-ups will give you some sort of boost to start the day. It may appear to be hard at the beginning and that is completely normal, but with some practice, you will get better! Remember, practice makes perfect.

Be careful not to hurt your back though! Numbed by sleep, your body may take a little time to respond to the effort.

Stretching, breathing

In the morning, your body and your mind wake up gently and gradually learn the essential gestures. To avoid painful movements and allow your body the time it needs to relax, practice some stretching when jumping out of bed. Start by stretching different parts of yourself:

  • the neck
  • the back
  • thighs, calves and ankles
  • shoulders, biceps and wrists

During this exercise, gradually approach a source of brightness in order to wake yourself up. Remember to breathe deeply during each exercise.

References:

  • https://www.wikihow.com/Get-up-in-the-Morning-Feeling-Fresh
  • https://www.careergirldaily.com/7-tips-wake-feeling-fresh-energetic-morning/
  • https://www.developgoodhabits.com/morning-routine-habits/

Health Benefits of Weighted Blankets

Weighted Blanket
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Sleep experts recommend infused weighted blankets for adults as well as toddlers that find it difficult to get an uninterrupted night of sleep. Often the poor sleep and fatigue are attributed to the mattress or the pillow. What is rarely blamed is the blanket. Today it is believed that having a proper blanket is vital for good sleep. Unfortunately, not all blankets are equal when it comes to good sleep. For those who have poor sleep, extreme fatigue and feel lethargic in the morning, experts in sleep recommend weighted blankets, also known as the gravity blanket. Over the years, many anecdotal reports have appeared attesting to the health benefits of weighted blankets.

Related Reading: Weighted Blankets for Toddlers

What exactly are weighted blankets?

Weighted blankets or gravity blankets haven been around for decades and have been used by therapists to soothe children with a variety of disorders including autism, ADHD, nightmares, anxiety and stress. Now there is some evidence that weighted blankets may also be of benefit for adults. Weighted blankets are slightly heavier than the conventional bed covering. These blankets may have extra layers of fabric, silicone or some type of filler material like breathable cotton, seeds, beads, rice or other particles to make the blanket heavy. Some blankets may have a weighted feeling in certain pockets so that only specific areas of the blanket come into contact with the human body.

Health Benefits of Weighted Blankets
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How does the weighted blanket work?

The weighted blankets produce pressure over certain areas of the body, similar to what one feels during acupressure therapy. The increased pressure is spread over the body and gradually relaxes the muscle, just like what happens during massage therapy. During sleep, as the individual tuns ad moves, the weighted blanket applies pressure to different areas of the body, resulting in a soothing sensation. Some studies indicate that the pressure generated at specific points in the body results in the release of neurotransmitter (eg serotonin, melatonin) which then modulate the sensory perception of pain, stress, and anxiety; the overall result being a state of total body relaxation. Another interesting thing is that weighted blankets work with any sleeping position.

Related Reading: Donate a Weighted Blanket

How heavy is a weighted blanket?

Heavy Weighted Blanket
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There are many types and sizes of weighted blankets but therapists suggest that the weighted blanket should take into account the weight and size of the person. The weighted blanket should be about 7-10% of the person’s body weight but the maximum weight should not be more than 25 pounds.

Who should not use weighted blankets?

Weighted blankets are not recommended for children younger than 2 years and infants. There is a risk of sudden death infant syndrome if the blanket is used in infants.

Related Reading: 6 Tips to Wake up Peacefully in the Mornings

What medical conditions can be helped by the weighted blanket?

Weighted blankets have been shown to help with a number of medical conditions including:

  • Insomnia
  • Stress
  • Muscle and joint pains
  • ADHD
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Restless leg syndrome

Conclusion on Weighted Blanket Benefits

It is important to note that the benefits of a weighted blanket are not a one-shot deal. To derive the health benefits, the weighted blanket has to be used regularly during sleep. Most people start to see the benefits within a few days. While the weighted blankets are slightly more expensive than the conventional blanket, they are safe, provide a warm hugging-feeling and permit a natural way to combat certain illnesses. And more importantly, unlike prescription medications, the weighted blanket does not cause serious adverse effects, addiction or tolerance

6 tips to wake up peacefully in the morning

wakeup peacefully
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The sun has just risen, it’s time to join the office for a thrilling day full of action and adventures! It does not matter if you get up on the wrong foot this morning, thanks to our pieces of advice, you will not have any more reason to be grumpy. Objective: to be in a good mood when your alarm clock goes off!

Go to bed early!

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The duration of sleep remains variable from one person to another. In general, it is around 8 hours on average.

The body needs this time to recover and recharge. Thankfully, going to bed early allows you to wake up in shape and without dark circles. Don’t watch any movies that will give you nightmares at night.

The trick to fall asleep: create for yourself a ritual of simple gestures that will put your body in a better condition to fall asleep.

Good to know: for children, the bedtime ritual helps chasing away night fears. By performing the same actions in the same order, every night, parents reassure their children and establish a familiar atmosphere that helps them feel safe enough to fall asleep fast.

If reading has incomparable benefits on sleep, this is not the case of electronic devices however. They stimulate the brain and prevent it from relaxing. To make sure you have a calm and serene setting, you must:

  • switch off the television at least 15 minutes before bed;
  • not carry your cell phone or tablet with you to bed because that means that you are going to use it for sure.

Good to know: Electrical devices produce electromagnetic waves (blue light) that can disrupt the brain and prevent it from finding restful sleep. Better to switch them off before going to bed!

A gentle awakening

When the radio is triggered at high volume or a bell screams that it is the time to wake up, the body is surprised and that makes it even more tired, rather than recharged. The best type of alarms comes pre-built on certain adjustable beds that give off a gentle vibration/massage instead of a noise. Now that’s a nice way to be woken up, wouldn’t you agree? The DynastyMattress DM9000s adjustable bed may not have this alarm feature, however, it has many other built-in features that will ensure you get a great night of sleep.

Think about investing into some sophisticated yet soft alarm clock in a good store:

  • a natural ring with a soft atmosphere (savannah, sea, countryside, etc.). Scientific research has repeatedly shown the importance of a peaceful awakenings.
  • a song that you like
  • a sound that grows gradually, little by little to make you emerge gently;
  • a light that turns on gradually so as not to dazzle you.

Once you are fully awake, gently warm up by moving your head to the right and to the left or simply make circles with your feet, while being on your bed.

Have a good breakfast!

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It is essential to give yourself some time for breakfast in the morning. Indeed, without a good breakfast, you tend to feel a little bit hungry around 11AM which may create an irresistible urge to empty the candy dispenser.

So what does a good breakfast look like?
It isn’t complicated in any way. All you need is to have a stimulating drink such as tea, coffee or chocolate where you use honey rather than sugar if you like your drinks sweet; have a bowl of cereals; eat a fruit for the vitamins; and eat a dairy product if you are still young and not intolerant to lactose.

Good to know: the natural glucose contained in honey is much less caloric than that contained in sugar.

A progressive light to mimic the sunrise

Some alarms propose to emit a progressive light to simulate dawn. But in order to get the proper effect of that artificial sunrise, you have to remember to close your curtains and to be careful not to blind yourself with the violent light of a ceiling light.

In order to do that, you could for instance invest in a bedside lamp.

Organize your awakening according to the path followed by the light: from the bedroom to the kitchen without forgetting the bathroom.

Good to know: a low energy light bulb can help you modulate your light. Indeed, its progressive lighting, first soft, then more intense will not dazzle you and will help you wake up gently.

Fight against the desire to go back to bed!

The snooze function is ravaging the big sleepers! Indeed, it allows to push the alarm a few minutes away.

But going back to sleep is the thing that you should absolutely avoid in the morning if you are hoping for waking up well, because that can cause unfortunate delays. So it is much better to wake up slowly once and for all to avoid drowsiness.

Good to know: on an alarm clock, if the snooze function is well known to sleepers, the function “nap” is more unknown. This feature allows you to have a nap after lunch, if the night has been shorter than expected. To do this, simply pre-set the time of your nap, between 10 and 120 minutes, and your alarm clock accompanies you during this time of recovery.

Do some yoga

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Yoga lovers love to commune with the sun when it rises. Simple gestures allow you to stretch your body and awaken it to start the day. But yoga can also help relax the body at bedtime.

When to practice yoga?

– When the sun is rising is the ideal option;

– You can also doing it during the day to relieve various stresses.

Good to know: a yoga session aims to relax the brain and physical tensions of the body. This “letting go” frees you from tension, physical pain and worries. So you start the day, stronger and more serene.

Weighted blankets for toddlers

Weighted blankets for toddlers
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Weighted blankets were first used by therapists to manage children with a variety of mood and behavior disorders. Today, they’re used in adults, especially to combat anxiety related insomnia. These weighted blankets offer a deep-pressure like sensation similar to a massage and lead to calming of the child. In fact, the weighted blankets paved way to a good night of sleep more often than not. Since then, a variety of different weighted blankets have been developed for toddlers. They are available in various sizes, styles, fabrics, weights, and colors.

Recommended reading: How to Choose the Right Weighted Blаnkеt Fоr Your Kid

How do weighted blankets work in toddlers?

weighted blankets work in toddlers
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The weighted blankets cause a deep pressure like sensation on the body, which stimulates the nerves that activate certain brain centers. In the brain, a number of neurotransmitters are released like melatonin and serotonin, which then produce a calming and sedative effect.

What types of weighted blankets should be used in toddlers?

In general, the weight of the blanket should not be more than 7-10% of the total body weight of the child. So if the toddler is 50 pounds, the maximum weight should not be more than 5 pounds. If the child has autism or is having difficulty sleeping, then a heavier weighted blanket should be selected as it provides a more soothing effect. The smallest weighted blankets for toddlers weigh about 5 pounds.

What else can I do to make the toddler sleep better?

It is important to understand that weighted blankets, though safe, cannot cure insomnia or any type of mental health disorder. However, they can improve sleep, and provide a calming sensation. To get the maximal benefits from weighted blankets in toddlers, the following are recommended:

  • Cut out all caffeinated or cola beverages, especially a few hours before bedtime
  • Make sleeping a routine; this means getting the toddler to bed at the same time every day
  • Minimize the amount of screen time just before bedtime
  • Avoid feeding the toddler with a heavy meal just before bedtime. Provide supper a few hours early and only limit the toddler to snacks if he or she is hungry afterwards
  • Avoid intense physical activity or over-stimulation of the toddler before bedtime
  • Make sure the bedroom is free of distractions like the TV
  • Ensure that the bed is comfortable

Which toddlers should not have a weighted blanket?

Safety should always be a priority. Weighted blankets should not be used in children less than 24 months old or less than 2 years old. Infants are at great risk of sudden death infant syndrome. The most critical fact is to select the safe size and weight of the weighted blanket. If you are unsure about the weighted blanket, speak to an occupational therapist; these professionals can guide you to the appropriate size and weight of the weighted blanket for your child. Finally, when you have selected the blanket, always observe the toddler a few times while sleeping. The weighted blanket should not become tangled or produce distress in the child.

Can a weighted blanket help my toddler?

weighted blanket help my toddler
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The thing to understand is that weighted blankets are safe but are not a panacea for all health problems in toddlers. They were originally meant for autistic children, and still are, to a certain extent. However, weighted blankets can produce good sleep but have to be used regularly for their benefits. For toddlers, you should select a weighted blanket that has a soft fabric like cotton or fleece and feels comfortable on the skin. If your toddler has allergies, then avoid weighted blankets with feathers.

Dunlop vs. Talalay Latex Mattresses

dunlop vs talalay latex mattress
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Since latex is flexible and durable, it’s used in various industrial applications. Latex mattresses are top-rated because it provides pressure relief and body-contouring comfort. This kind of mattress is breathable, so you will be able to sleep cooler. Latex is processed using either the Talalay or Dunlop method. Some mattresses have latex processed using both methods.

Talalay Latex

Talalay is a more rigorous method than Dunlop. It involves whipping the liquid latex extract into froth and injecting it into a mold partially. The mold is then vacuum-sealed. This causes the latex to swell and fill the mold. Flash freezing the molded latex removes carbon dioxide from it. As a result, the latex foam becomes more breathable and lighter as it solidifies. The frozen latex is then baked and washed after taking removing it from the mold. The last step is allowing the latex to dry. This gives the latex a homogenous consistency. Talalay latex is usually less dense and softer than Dunlop latex. It’s fluffy and light throughout. Talalay latex doesn’t have the density and firmness to become a support core material, so it’s used as a comfort layer.

Dunlop Latex

Dunlop involves whipping the liquid latex extract into froth and injecting all of it into a mold. After baking the latex in a vulcanization oven, it’s taken out of the mold and washed. It will be baked again to get rid of excess moisture. This process makes the latex quite dense. The heterogeneous composition of the Dunlop latex makes it bottom-heavy. Sediment gathers below the foamier material, so one side of the latex is typically denser than the other side. Dunlop latex is usually utilized as a support layer. Some latex mattresses also have a Dunlop comfort layer.

Similarities and Differences between Talalay and Dunlop Latex

Knowing the similarities and differences between Talalay and Dunlop latex mattress will make it easier for you to make your choice.

Durability

Dunlop latex is denser compared to Talalay latex, so it’s usually more durable and less prone to deterioration. Both types of latex are more resilient than other materials used for making mattresses. Latex hybrid or all-latex mattress has an average lifespan of 7 to 8 years.

Cost

Dunlop is cheaper than Talalay, partly due to its less rigorous methods. Mattresses that contain synthetic or blended latex are usually less expensive than the ones with natural or organic latex.

Feel

The firmness of Talalay or Dunlop latex layers depend on the mattress model. Most mattresses that have Talalay latex feel softer than Dunlop comfort layers. Dunlop, on the other hand, conforms more to the body of the sleeper and feels firmer. An all-latex mattress with a Talalay latex comfort layer usually has Dunlop latex as a support core material. Both Talalay and Dunlop latex can be designed for various firmness levels. Some Dunlop layers are naturally denser, but may not feel as hard as some Talalay layers. Both materials offer consistent conforming that can reduce pain and aches in the hips, back, and other areas. This is why latex mattresses are especially preferred by the elderly and the seniors.

Temperature Neutrality

Talalay latex retains less heat, partly due to its processing method. Flash-freezing removes carbon dioxide from the latex, which results in a more breathable mattress. A lot of mattress manufacturers, however, choose to aerate Dunlop and Talalay latex layers to enhance air circulation. Natural and organic latex is usually cooler than synthetic or blended latex. It is definitely cooler than most memory foam mattresses. Of course the temperature balancing feature of certain Sleep Number beds use a much more advanced technology; nevertheless, latex is considered one of the more cooler mattresses compared to most available options.

Dunlop vs. Talalay Latex Mattresses
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https://www.goodbed.com/talalay-vs-dunlop-latex/

Odor Potential

Brand new latex mattresses give off a rubbery off-gassing scent. This is common with beds that contain Talalay or Dunlop layers. Synthetic and blended latex is made using petrochemicals, which cause it to give off more VOCs or volatile organic compounds. VOCs cause the off-gassing scent. Natural and organic Talalay and Dunlop mattress have less off-gassing potential. However, you should expect to off-gas from brand new mattresses.

Environmental Impact

The processing method for Dunlop latex is less intensive, so its environmental footprint is lower than Talalay. Any mattress that’s made from natural or organic Talalay or Dunlop latex is considered an ideal option for those who are looking for an eco-friendly mattress.

Responsiveness

Talalay latex layers feel bouncier when weight is placed on it. Dunlop latex is quite springy, so it goes back to its original shape once you get up from the bed. Both Dunlop and Talalay have better responsiveness than memory foam. However, latex mattresses are not that good in isolating motion transfer.

What You Need to Know About Synthetic, Natural and Blended Latex

Latex mattresses are ideal for those who suffer from allergies. It is resistant to dust mites and mold. Almost all other kinds of mattress gather pet dander and serve as a breeding ground for mold and dust mites. These allergens are almost impossible to remove. This means that you’re breathing in these allergens. By sleeping on a new latex mattress, you can have peace of mind knowing that you will be sleeping on a clean and safe environment due to the allergen-free properties of the mattress.

mattress allergy
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Not all latex mattresses are the same, so you need to be careful when buying one. Consider the materials used to make the latex. Natural latex is made from rubber tree sap. Synthetic latex is made from petrochemicals. This kind of latex has emulsifying agents that reduce its surface tension. As a result, synthetic latex imitates the shape retention and density of natural latex.

Some brands say that their mattress contains one hundred percent organic latex, but these claims are quite misleading because all latex materials are chemically treated to produce the foam. The GOLS or Global Organic Latex Standard awards certification to latex products with at least ninety-five percent latex. This means that one hundred percent natural latex and organic latex are not the same.

Blended latex is made by combining synthetic and natural latex. Blended latex should have at least thirty percent natural latex. Some brands claim that their mattress contains natural latex. The latex component of their products may be mostly synthetic. You need to be careful when buying a latex mattress. Consider your needs and budget before you purchase one.

Tired of nightmares? Read this!

Stop Nightmares
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You miss those nights where you could sleep oh so peacefully and wake up calmly and smiling rather than terrified and sweating? Then you have to find a way to stop having nightmares.

Nightmares can have many origins, but when they are particularly recurrent, it is important to have solutions to fight them.

Indeed, knowing how to avoid nightmares will help those who suffer from them to get back to sleep and not to worry about going to bed.

Related Reading: Music to stop nightmares and fall asleep

First step: Determine the origin of nightmares

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To fight effectively a pathology or a problem, it is important to find the origin of said problem (insofar as the cause did not appear to you spontaneously).

As we know, nightmares are usually due to stress and lack of sleep:

  • permanent, because it’s in your nature.
  • punctual, if you have decisions of particularly heavy consequences to take or complicated problems to manage.
  • following a shock (physical or emotional).
  • old, for example resulting from childhood.

Moreover, nightmares can also be related to taking some medications (some cause this type of side effects). They also occur during periods of withdrawal (including alcohol withdrawal).

Nightmares can be related as well to a particular event such as physical or mental exhaustion, a change of climate, etc. If it’s due to anxiety, a weighted blanket can be an excellent remedy.

Second step: Treat the origin of nightmares

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As much as possible, you have to find a way to treat the nightmares by getting back to their origin.

Regarding nightmares related to stress

If nightmares are due to stress, there are several options available depending on the cause.

If you suffer from permanent stress, you should consider going to a sophrologist or doing yoga to learn how to better manage your stress. You can also occasionally take a course of magnesium chloride.

On the other hand, if you suffer from one-time stress, whether it is because you are making a decision or because you have complicated problems to manage, use NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) practitioners to help you get the most out of your thinking, management and analysis skills.

When it comes to post Traumatic Stress, you can use an eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) practitioner, follow Ericksonian hypnosis sessions, or work with a biodecoder (biological disease decoding practitioner).

And if your nightmares are caused by stress you have been carrying with you since childhood:

Call a psychologist or psychotherapist (or child psychiatrist for children). Or try turning to a hypnotherapist or a biodecoder. You can also use magnesium chloride as it helps reducing stress.

Regarding nightmares related to taking medication

In case of nightmares related to taking medication, read their instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for an alternative to this treatment.

Note: Many medications can cause nightmares, such as Singulair® for treating asthma, some anti-HIV treatments, and even some anxiolytics and sleeping pills.

Nightmares related to a withdrawal period

If your nightmares are related to a withdrawal period, do not give up and get help from specialists in centers or by an addictologist. They can take care of you and take into account your nightmares in addition to your withdrawal related difficulties.

Also you can find out on the internet – especially on forums – people who live or have lived the same thing as you to help you cross this course.

Nightmares related to a particular event

Identify the event that is causing your nightmares and make sure you fix it as best you can.

If possible, take a little rest to get off your feet and stop getting tired.

Again, participating in sophrology or yoga sessions could help you.

Third step: Prevent the appearance of nightmares

If you tend to be subject to nightmares, some basic precautions are necessary:

Avoid horror movies or stories that may scare you, especially if you are sensitive. Unconsciously, these stories may resurface during your REM sleep.

For children who are easily worried in the dark, leave a night light on or open the door with the light in the hallway lit while they fall asleep.

For slightly larger children, it is possible to draw monsters or a representation of what children see in their nightmares. By enclosing the drawings in a drawer or in a “magic” box, the child can feel safer.

In addition, it is possible to limit nightmares by putting children to bed at a regular time, reading them a story or stroking their head gently to help them fall asleep.

Fight against nightmares with aromatherapy

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Several essential oils are interesting to fight against nightmares, especially when spread for a quarter of an hour before going to bed:

  • True lavender essential oil (Lavandula angustifolia or officinalis) or with that of lavandin;
  • sandalwood essential oil;
  • Patagonian pine essential oil associated with twice the amount of Rosewood essential oil.

For kids :

Make a mixture with 1 drop of Angelic essential oil and 1 drop of Bitter Orange essential oil.

Apply it in a gentle massage on the solar plexus at bedtime for two weeks.

For adults:

Mix 1 drop each of the following essential oils: Roman chamomile, Marjoram with shell.

Apply this preparation on the solar plexus at bedtime for two weeks.

Another possibility :

Make a preparation with 2 ml of Patagonian pine essential oil, 4 ml of Rosewood essential oil and 15 ml of hazelnut vegetable oil.

Apply 3 drops of this mixture on the solar plexus or the spine.

Take dietary supplements

Some of the interesting dietary supplements to help avoid nightmares include those which treat anxiety:

  • Aluminum (in small quantities) found in water, salt, flour, mushrooms, green vegetables, dairy products;
  • Lithium found in algae, fish, crustaceans, whole grains or beet;
  • Magnesium (magnesium chloride, maximum 300 mg per day), present in legumes, dark green leafy vegetables, seeds, nuts, chocolate and banana;
  • Zinc, found mainly in oysters, but also in nuts, vegetables, whole grains and meats.
  • Side vitamins, especially vitamin B1 (thiamine, 1 to 1.6 mg per day) that you can found in pork, liver and kidney, dairy products, egg yolk, brewer’s yeast, cereals, pulses, fresh fruits, nuts (make sure to avoid prolonged cooking so as not to destroy it); or vitamin B2 (riboflavin or E101 dye, at a rate of 1.6 mg per day for an adult) that you can more or less find in the same food as the food containing B1 vitamins, but also in oily fish, cocoa, mushrooms, sausages, whole wheat bread, spinach, chicory, dandelions … It resists heat better than thiamine, but it is sensitive to light.

References:

Weighted Blankets to manage anxiety

Weighted Blankets for anxiety
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Most people experience anxiety every now and then, but this is a normal physiological event with no adverse effects. However, there are some individuals who experience moderate to severe anxiety regularly. They may start to fear and fret about minute things that may be of no importance. Often the anxiety can result in severe symptoms of panic and fear within minutes, leading to complete loss of control.

In these individuals, anxiety can occur at any time, even a small trigger can set off the symptoms.

When moderate to severe anxiety occurs on a regular basis and causes panic attacks or leads to intense fear, it often leads to a poor quality of life. People with severe anxiety will try to avoid any situation that causes the symptoms and consequently often lead to sheltered life or become socially isolated. People typically seek medical advice or alternatively seek the comfort of  an infused weighted blanket.

There are many cases of anxiety including medications, certain disease states, mental health disorders and in many cases no cause is ever found.

Some common anxiety disorders include social phobia (eg afraid to speak in front of people), specific phobias (eg afraid of snakes, heights) or separation anxiety disorder (often seen in children).

What are risk factors for anxiety?

Common risk factors for anxiety include the following

  1. Trauma; especially individuals who have been physically or emotionally abused. Individuals who have witnessed traumatic events like the death of a family member are at a risk for developing anxiety at some point in their lives.
  2. Illness is a common cause of anxiety; people who have been diagnosed with cancer or a chronic disorder can develop anxiety.
  3. A common risk factor for anxiety is stress; For example, one may worry about their financial situation or the thought of losing a job.
  4. Some personalities are more at risk than others for developing anxiety
  5. Having a mental health disorder like depression
  6. Finally, excessive abuse of alcohol and illicit drugs can trigger anxiety

When anxiety affects the quality of life, one should seek treatment.

 Weighted Blankets to manage anxiety
image credithttps://fosteranddobbs.com

What are treatments for anxiety?

The two traditional treatments for anxiety include medications and psychotherapy. Medications can control the symptoms but they also have side effects, are expensive and have to be taken for a long time. Similarly, psychotherapy sessions are not cheap and one has to undergo many sessions before any benefit is seen.

 What about weighted blankets to treat anxiety?

Luckily another treatment option for anxiety is weighted blankets. The application of weighted blankets is similar to acupressure. The weighted blankets compress the skin and underlying tissues and trigger release of chemicals, which then act on the brain to modulate mood, behavior and anxiety. The weighted blanket is best applied at night since it also produces excellent sleep. The hugging effect generated by the weighted blanket produces a sense of calm, relaxation and diminished anxiety. The benefits of a weighted blanket are not immediate and may take a few days. To get the maximal benefit of weighted blankets one should also change lifestyle.

weighted blankets to treat anxiety
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This means discontinuing alcohol and use of illicit drugs, developing good sleep hygiene, participating regularly in exercise, interacting with online self-help groups, and participating in a variety of social activities.

Last but not least, one needs to be really careful when using weighted blankets on kids because the weight of the heavy blankets can rarely interfere with the child’s breathing.

Conclusion on using weighted blankets to combat anxiety

It is important to understand that the use of a weighted blanket does not always cure anxiety but it will reduce the symptoms over time. In some cases, weighted blankets can be combined with anti-anxiety medications to get the most benefit.

Infused weighted blankets

Infused weighted blanket
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For people who have difficulty falling asleep, have anxiety or stress, a simple remedy that works is the use of infused weighted blankets. Also known as gravity or weighted blankets, infused weighted blankets have been used for many years to manage anxiety in certain groups of children. Latest evidence is indicating that infused weighted blankets may also be beneficial for adults.

What exactly are infused weighted blankets?

exactly infused weighted blankets
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https://5beddings.com

Infused weighted blankets are specially made with a filler material inside the blanket fabric. The filler material can be fine grains, rice, beads, silicone, plastic polymer, an artificial sand-like material or weighted feathers. The fillers are evenly spread in such a way so that they will not all accumulate in one spot.

How do infused weighted blankets work?

Over the years, it has been noticed that when infused weighted blankets are used in children with behavior disorders, the child quickly becomes calm and restful. Now it is believed that infused weighted blankets work similarly to acupressure or massage therapy. The additional weight on the skin, muscle, and joints, stimulates sensory nerves which transmit a signal to the brain, which in turn releases neurochemicals that lower stress, decrease pain and improve sleep. The infused weighted blanket act as a body-hugger and overall provide a comforting sensation. You can read more about ‘The Science of How Weighted Blankets Work’ on our detailed weighted blanket review.

How heavy should the infused weighted blanket be?

In general, the infused weighted blanket should not be more than 10% of the adult body weight. The maximum weight of the blanket should be 25 pounds. Most individuals will find that an infused weighted blanket of 15-20 pounds is ideal for sleep, comfort and stress relief. Kids’ weighted blankets typically weigh only 3 – 5 pounds.

Who should not use weighted blankets?

The infused or gravity weighted blankets are not recommended in infants. In general, one should avoid these blankets in children under the age of 3. In infants, there is a risk of sudden infant death syndrome which may be triggered by the blanket.

What fabrics are used to make the infused weighted blankets?

The infused weighted blankets are made of many fabrics including cotton, flannel, satin, fleece, wool, and Minky. The choice of fabric is entirely based on personal preference. However, if you have heat-sensitive skin, go with satin. If you feel cold all the time, go with cotton, Minky or fleece. The latest infused weighted blankets come with an external cover, which makes it easier to maintain the blanket. Only the cover needs to be removed for washing.

Related Reading: Best and Worst Drinks for Sleep

Are the infused fillers in weighted blankets harmful?

The only potential danger of a weighted blanket is suffocation of a baby due to the extra weight. That’s in fact why weighted blankets are not recommended for kids less than 2-3 years. Other than that there are no harmful effects of these blankets. The fillers for the infused weighted blankets are harmless materials that have no adverse effects. The fillers are inserted meticulously inside the fabric so that the chances of a leak or perforation is very low.

Infused weighted blankets
image credit
https://aessentialstore.com/products/tranql-lavender-infused-blanket-kids

Are the infused weighted blankets durable?

Yes, just like the conventional blanket, the infused weighted blankets will last you a long time with simple maintenance. This mainly depends on the durability of the glass beads and the seam strength. You can use them every night or whenever you feel anxious, can’t sleep or have anxiety. Today, the infused weighted blankets are also made of cool filler materials so that they can be used by individuals who constantly feel hot while sleeping. Also, there are heated infused weighted blankets that can be used during winter.

How to select a weighted blanket?

best weighted blanket
image credit https://supercomfysleep.com

Weighted blankets are not ordinary blankets; unlike the traditional blankets, these blankets have fillers inside the fabric that makes them feel heavy. Over the years, it has been shown that weighted blankets not only provide relief from the cold weather, but they also have therapeutic benefits. For years, therapists have used weighted blankets to manage children with autism, ADHD and other behavioral disorders. However, the weighted blankets can also be used by adults to manage anxiety, insomnia, joint and muscle pain, and stress.

How do weighted blankets work?

As we outline on our weighted blanket review, the scientific principle behind their success is something called Deep Pressure Touch stimulation. The weighted blankets have fillers inside like glass beads, rice, silicone grains, weighted feathers, and fine sand particles. When the weighted blanket is draped over the body, the pressure on the skin and joints results in the stimulation of nerves, which in turn activate certain parts of the brain, which releases chemicals (melatonin, serotonin) that diminish pain, increase sleep, reduce anxiety and stress, and provide an overall feeling of comfort and security. This is what is known as deep touch pressure (DTP) or deep pressure therapy (DPT).

Types of weighted blankets?

 types of weighted blankets
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https://magicweightedblanket.com

 The weighted blanket is selected based on the individual’s weight. Experts suggest that the ideal weight of the blanket should be about 7-10% of the total body weight or a maximum of 25 pounds. There are weighted blankets of different weights for different purposes. Some people benefit from the light weighted blankets (8-17 pounds ) and others benefit from heavy weighted blankets (18-25 pounds).

How to select a weighted blanket?

To get the maximal benefit of a weighted blanket, it is important to select the blanket with the right weight. Selecting the correct weighted blankets not only provides more comfortable and good sleep, but it can also help erase or reduce symptoms of anxiety, stress, and pain. Here are some tips on the selection of a weighted blanket:

In general, the lighter weighted blankets (less than 10 pounds) are recommended for children. Adults tend to benefit from weighted blankets that weigh between 12-25 pounds.

If in doubt, always select a king-sized weighted blanket rather than a Queen. The reason is that two people can comfortably use the same blanket for good sleep and therapeutic benefits.

Select a weighted blanket with an outer cover that can be removed. This makes it easier to maintain the blanket and prevent damage to the internal fabric. The outer cover, also known as a duet, can be removed and cleaned if it gets dirty.

Many studies have demonstrated the benefits of weighted blankets on sleep. If you have difficulty sleeping, then select a weighted blanket that is about a pound heavier than 10% of your body weight. You want a weighted blanket that provides a touching and hugging sensation, which has been shown to work best for insomnia.

If you have anxiety or stress, select a weighted blanket that is light (between (8-15 pounds). These blankets apply gentle pressure on the body without causing too much compression. The lighter weighted blankets tend to have a calming effect on the brain and help one cope with anxiety and stress.

If your child has autism, ADHD or other behavior disorder, select a slightly heavier weighted blanket (12-20 pounds). The reason is that the heavier blankets provide a more secure feeling and help achieve a peaceful state of the mind. While many of these children may not be socially interactive, they do respond well to weighted blankets which provide a generalized sensation of being hugged, which leads to restful sleep.

For stress relief, the lighter weighted blankets should be selected. Those that weigh between 8-12 pounds are recommended. The lighter weighted blankets will help prevent the constant turning and tossing and allow you to fall asleep fast and deep.

How to select a weighted blanket?
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https://blog.ideafit.com/

How often do I need to use weighted blankets?

It is important to understand that in order to get the maximal therapeutic benefits from weighted blankets, they have to be used regularly. The benefits tend to occur rapidly but if you want them to last, then regular use is recommended. In fact, there is no reason why a weighted blanket cannot be used as a traditional blanket.