When was the last time you had a full night of sleep, let alone a good one? With today’s 24-hour workday and constant digital demands, we often find ourselves struggling for decent shut-eye—not to mention that majority of Americans are not getting enough sleep on a daily basis. To figure out why that is, we spoke with actress Jamie-Lynn Sigler, the face of mattress company Serta’s latest campaign Declare Peace, who shared with us the most common sleep problems and a few tips that you can try in order to solve them. “Good sleep is essential for everybody; it’s the greatest gift we can give to ourselves,” she said. “When you’re a mom like me, and you’re trying to balance a career, being a wife, being a friend and managing an illness [she has multiple sclerosis], you can forget to take care of yourself.” Ahead, five simple tweaks that’ll have you waking up refreshed and ready to take on the day.
Sure, you're tired (and you've counted as many sheep as your math can handle), yet you still find yourself tossing and turning in bed—sometimes with minutes that turn into hours. Easy trick: Get out of bed and engage in a simple physical activity, whether it's a light yoga sequence or breathing exercises. "If I get myself in the most relaxed mood possible, meaning stretching and meditating before bed or lighting candles, it can kind of alleviate the tossing and turning," Jamie-Lynn said.
If you've ever woken up with a cramp or sore muscle, it's most likely caused by your sleep position. And with mattresses that cater to all kinds of sleepers—from pillow huggers to freefallers—it's become easier than ever to find one that caters to your needs. "It's important to find a mattress that gives you the support that your body needs so that you're not waking up with aches and pains in the morning," said Jamie-Lynn, who sleeps on a Serta iComfort mattress that offsets the restlessness caused by MS.
Waking up sweat-drenched or in a midnight chill doesn't happen only when you've had a nightmare; oftentimes this is caused by the change in your body's temperature, which can disrupt your circadian rhythm. By wearing moisture-wicking pajamas or even taking a warm bath an hour or so before bed, you'll manage to keep cool, resulting in better sleep.
Sharing a bed with someone might have its perks (a.k.a. cuddles with a real-life SO v. this editor's imaginary BF)—but it also comes with its disadvantages. If your partner snores, rolls from side to side or gets up frequently in the middle of the night, you could be losing precious shut-eye. As a solution, you can use props like ear plugs, order a mattress with a firmness control system or—if it's a long-term issue—going separate ways come bedtime. (Sad, but morning snuggles, anyone?)
For Jamie-Lynn, waking up feeling well-rested is essential to a healthy lifestyle—and she's convinced that every peaceful night begins with a good mattress. "You need to give yourself rest to destress and have your bedroom be your sanctuary," she said. "At the center of our bedroom is your bed and mattress, so you want to do as much as you can to make that space as serene and peaceful as possible."