Back-to-school season is in full swing, and students everywhere are getting organized to return to class. But among all the stationery, tech and attire, there’s one academic essential you might have left off your list: Sleep.
According to this Canadian Health Measures Survey, one in four people between the ages of 18 and 34 don't sleep enough, and one in five adults don’t find their sleep refreshing.
If you’re a student, anxious about grades and spending hours hitting the books, it’s unsurprising that good sleep might be tough to get. It also doesn't help that most dorm beds are notoriously uncomfortable.
If that’s not enough to encourage you to reconsider your sleep space, maybe grades will. This MIT study, published in Nature, found that students who had greater quality and quantity of sleep actually got better grades than those who didn't.
So, whether you're living off campus or in a dorm, investing in good sleep can really pay off. Here are some ways you can take care of this back-to-school essential right now.
Start With The Basics
It’s hard to get a good night's sleep when your pillows and mattress aren’t up to par. Taking some time to find the right style for you can make a world of difference.
When you're in a dorm, you don’t get much choice when it comes to mattresses. If this is you, a memory foam mattress topper, like this one by Bloom, can add a game-changing layer of support and comfort.
If it’s time you invested in a new mattress, it’s helpful to go in store and try out a few. The Sleep Experts at Sleep Country Canada can help you find the best mattress suited to your individualized sleep needs and help you get your best night’s sleep.
Refresh Your Bedding
With the big things out of the way, it's time to turn to your sheets and duvets.
Your bedding can have a big influence on how warm or cool you are while you sleep, which in turn impacts your sleep quality.
So much, in fact, that you may want to keep a rotation of seasonal bedding to deal with Canada's temperature extremes and sleep well all year round.
In warmer months, a cotton sheet set is generally more comfortable. The PUR Organic Cotton Sheet Set, for example, can help heat dissipate as you sleep, so you stay cool throughout the night.
When the temperature drops, a brushed microfibre sheet set is wonderfully soft and can keep you warm and snug.
Finally, an all-season duvet that can regulate temperature is a great option that stays comfy no matter the weather.
Keep Stress & Anxiety In Check
If you’ve ever laid awake in bed, head filled with thoughts of your school work, desperate to fall asleep — that’s probably stress.
Thankfully, there are all sorts of ways you can set up your sleep environment to help you drift off. Weighted blankets, for instance, give the same cozy feeling as a hug and can help reduce tossing and turning throughout the night.
The science is there too. Sleeping with a weighted blanket has been shown to help with insomnia for people with generalized anxiety disorder.
The rule of thumb for picking a weighted blanket is to get one that weighs roughly 10% of your body weight, but you can start lighter if you're not used to the feeling.
There are even weighted sleep masks. These BlanQuil Dream Shades are designed to soothe tired eyes and block out light so you can fall soundly asleep — perfect for after a long day studying at a computer.
Whether you’re heading to the dorm or living off campus, it’s worth considering how you’re supporting your sleep this school year.
To try things out in person, head to your nearest Sleep Country Canada location and find out just how comfy bedtime can be.