Guide to a perfect night's sleep

Sleep is a crucial and often overlooked part of everyone's health and well being. Improve your sleep by buying the right bed, choosing the right mattress and taking care when selecting bed sizes. A bed that is comfortable for you with a mattress that provides support can make all the difference. Ensuring a good seven to eight hours sleep is vital for a number of reasons, not just to make sure you're well rested for the day. A lack of sleep can affect your productivity at work or your energy levels at home. Stay comfortable with a new bed from the Tesco range.

There are plenty of things you can do to help improve the quality of your sleep. From simple things like making sure the room is at the right temperature, to getting a whole new bed, you'll be surprised at the numerous ways you can impact the quality of your rest for the better. Not all beds provide the same support during the night so it is useful to look for the right bed for you.

Choosing the right bed

We spend a third of our lives in bed, so it is an important piece of furniture in your home. Everybody is different, not only are we all different shapes and sizes, but we also have our own unique preferences to how we sleep, whether we sleep on our sides, on our backs, or if we prefer soft or firm mattresses. Considering the size, texture and firmness of your mattress can improve your comfort during sleep.

An alternative to a traditional slatted bedframe is a divan, or box-spring bed base. Divans are basically wooden frames containing a sprung cloth-covered surface which a mattress is placed upon. This raises the height of your bed and leads the base and mattress combine for an extra comfortable night's sleep.

Mattress material

Traditional open sprung mattresses are a great budget choice, but may not give you all the comfort you need. These mattresses contain one long metal spring twisted into many individual shapes. If you have such a mattress and think your sleep quality could be improved, why not consider upgrading to a pocket sprung mattress?.

These mattresses contain thousands of tiny individually wrapped springs that lets the mattress better match the contours of your body. Or you could even opt for a memory foam mattress. Improvements in production have meant that memory foam mattresses are easily in the reach of consumers, and the total body support of memory foam might be exactly what you need for a good night's sleep. For more information read our mattress buying guide.

Duvets

As much as we all want to curl up warm at night, one of the most important aspects of getting a good night sleep is temperature control. It is important that your room is not too warm when you go to bed, and that is also true of your bedding. Pick out the duvet that will make you feel most comfortable all through the night.

When it comes to duvets the way to find out how warm they are is by checking the tog rating. The higher the rating the warmer the duvet will be. A tog rating over 12 will be perfect for winter, but may be far too hot during the summer when a duvet with a tog rating of 3 may be preferable. With this in mind it is a good idea to have a few duvets at home so you can swap them as the seasons change.

Pillows

When it comes to pillows, the most important thing to get right is the softness. Some people prefer softer pillows to firmer ones, and vice versa, so to ensure you get as good a night's sleep as possible it's best to make sure you have pillows that are perfect for you. Everyone has different preferences, but if you like to sleep on your back, a medium to firm pillow may be the best choice for you, whereas a softer pillow maybe better if you like to sleep on your front. Take a look at our bedding buying guide to find out more about choosing the right duvets and pillows.

Sleep advice

Aside from investing in the right bed and bedding, there are other simple tricks you can employ to try and boost the quality of your sleep.

A great way to teach your body to sleep better is to go to bed at a regular time. This is of course easier said than done, especially if you have young children, but getting into a habit of going to bed at the same every night helps your body to know that it is time to sleep. This also means getting up at the same time every morning, which may be easier during the weekend, than forgoing your lie-in at the weekend!

As well as going to bed at regular times, creating bedtime rituals can also help. This tells your body that it's time to unwind and start preparing for sleep. This could be going for a bath, reading a book, or making a cup of cocoa.

Another thing to concentrate on is to try and make your bedroom more sleep friendly. This could be anything from investing in thicker blackout curtains, investing in a white noise machine to drown out any outside sounds or ensuring that the room is always at a cool temperature.

As we are all surrounded by screens these days, it can also help to turn off any smartphones, tablets or TVs before bed. The light emitted from electronic screens can harm the body's ability to produce the hormone melatonin, which is vital to getting to sleep. The back-lighting on such screens in effect confuses your body into thinking that it is daylight hours, and not night time. Red and blue light from LED-backlit computer screens interrupt sleep and can suppress melatonin production significantly when compared to sleeping in a dark room.

The other important thing to remember is to be sufficiently active during the day. Getting regular exercise and eating right is vital for all aspects of your health, and nowhere is this truer than when it comes to sleeping.

There are lots of ways to help yourself get a good night's sleep, but all the tricks in the book won't help if you are suffering substandard bedding. So with that in mind, read over Tesco's mattress and bedding buying guides to find the right products for you.

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