It’s one of the most precious yet elusive things we’re all looking for: a good, peaceful, uninterrupted night’s sleep. But how often do we get it? With our lives busier and more stressed than ever, juggling jobs, family and an addiction to social media, it’s often hard to completely turn off at night and get a restorative eight hours.
Lack of sleep is something moms talk about at the school gates, businessmen won’t admit in boardrooms and college students take for granted. But what if you could wave a magic wand and get the perfect amount, every night? You’d do it, right?
Of course, there’s a catch – you’d have to pay. Sleep product review website mattressclarity.com carried out a survey of 3,000 people to find out just how much we would be willing to pay up for the privilege. And they made some very interesting discoveries.
It turns out that, on average, we’d be willing to spend $120 a night in order to get some proper shuteye. Sure, that’s the equivalent of around 60 Starbucks Grandes, but maybe if we gave up our caffeine addictions anyway we wouldn’t have trouble falling asleep in the first place.
People in different states were willing to pay more than others. Sleep is obviously highly important to people from New Hampshire – despite having relatively little traffic noise to keep them awake at night, New Hampshire locals would gladly dig deep in their wallets and hand over $200 if it meant sleeping easy. The good people of the Ocean State would be willing to pay $107. Those who valued a good night’s sleep the least were Oregonians, who would be prepared to offer $93.13 – which is still a considerable amount.
The survey also looked at what different professions would be willing to spend on sleep. Perhaps unsurprisingly, considering the long hours they work and the often stressful situations they have to deal with, healthcare workers would be prepared to pay the most: $164. The industry that values sleep the least is the pharmaceutical industry, with workers claiming they’d pay 91 dollars.
Mattressclarity.com also surveyed people to find out the steps that they take to help them sleep when suffering from insomnia:
Try to force yourself to sleep – 23.8 percent
Take sleeping pills – 14.3 percent
Drink alcohol – 3.2 percent
Work out – 3.2 percent
Do something relaxing like reading – 27.0 percent
Work or surf the Internet – 28.6 percent
14.3 percent said they’d take sleeping pills, while 23.8 percent said they’d just stay in bed, trying to force themselves to sleep. A significant 28.6 percent say they’d work or surf the internet. These are all actually detrimental to the quality of your sleep. If you try to force yourself, for example, all that tossing and turning only amps up your anxiety about it. It’s far better to leave your bedroom, try to read for a bit, take a bath or drink herbal tea, and go back to bed when you feel sleepy.
Sleeping pills are only too easy to rely on. When you take prescription sleeping pills over a long period of time, your body grows accustomed to the drug, and you need higher and higher doses to get the same sleep-inducing effect.
3.2 percent of people go for a workout if they can’t sleep – however, exercising right before bed raises your core body temperature, increases your heart rate and prompts your system to release stimulating epinephrine (adrenaline). And according to experts at mattressclarity.com, you should strive to use your bedroom solely as a space to go to bed.
“One thing is clear from our survey – we definitely value our shuteye,” said Joe Auer from Mattress Clarity. “When struggling for sleep you shouldn’t work, watch TV or use your computer in bed or the bedroom. The goal is to associate the bedroom with sleep alone, so that your brain and body get a strong signal that it’s time to nod off when you get into bed.”