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Category Archives: Sleep Study

Why Your Brain Needs Sleep

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Many scientists have studied sleep and why it is that we devote so much of our time to sleeping. New evidence from a recent study by Maiken Nedergaaed and colleagues at the University of Rochester in New York has refreshed a long-held hypothesis that during sleep the brain cleans itself. The scientists studied mice to find that sleep allows fluids to easily run through the brain and clean out metabolic toxins, essentially cleaning the brain of garbage. Check out this video from D News about the study and it’s findings.  

Make sure you get your sleep so you can dump the junk from your brain!

Insomnia: Causes and Effects

Everyone has had a sleepless night here and there, whether it is because of an exciting event the next day or one too many cups of coffee. For one-third of Americans, insomnia is a nightly problem that affects their daily lives.

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There are a variety of causes that can be attributed to this problem. For some it can be caused by stress at home or work, a change in location, depression, anxiety, or certain medical conditions. For others it may be about sleep habits and environment. Some people eat poorly and too late in the day, others do not have a steady sleep schedule, and most have an unsupportive and uncomfortable mattress.

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There are many long-term effects that can result from insomnia. It can slow reaction times, result in poor performance at work, or cause weight gain or loss, irritability, anxiety, or depression, and it may put you at a higher risk for high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.

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A proper environment and schedule are key to getting great sleep, night after night. Setting up a sleeping and eating schedule can dramatically help with insomnia. Eat healthy foods earlier in the evening and make sure to give yourself a dedicated 8 hours of sleep per night. Also it is important to have a comfortable and supportive mattress. This will help to keep you from waking in the night from aches and pains. For more serious or continual insomnia cases, please seek help from a doctor.

The Cure for Snoring is…

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When it comes to sleep, many people or their sleeping partners have a problem with snoring. Some have turned to nasal strips, while others experience insomnia. This woman found a different, more homeopathic approach to helping her husband with his snoring habit…singing!

Read more from this article to find out how you too may be able to stop your snoring or that of your sleeping partner

“While there are a number of sophisticated medical treatments available, such as nasal and oral devices as well as surgery, Ojay’s solution is more akin to a natural home remedy. The British choir director claims that a series of routine vocalizations, performed 20 minutes a day over the course of less than a month, can reduce snoring significantly. That’s because these ‘singing exercises,’ she says, were formulated specifically to work out throat muscles that have weakened over time. The approach is based on the premise that firming up these muscles would allow air to pass in and out with less obstruction.”

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/cure-snoring-singing-180949408/

25 Facts You May Not Know About Dreaming

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Check out these great and unusual facts, compiled by List 25, that you may have never heard before.

If you do not have time to watch the video we have written them out for you:

25. The average human spends 6 years of his or her life dreaming.

24. Ancient Romans submitted their significant or unusual dreams to the Senate for interpretation.

23. The Beatty Papyrus is the oldest dream dictionary in existence. It was written around 1350 B.C.

P._Chester_Beatty_I,_folio_13-14,_recto 22. Birth order influences the world of progression of dreams. Men generally dream about more violence, and first-born females tend to have more aggressive characters. On the other hand, first-born males tend to dream about themselves in a more positive light than their younger siblings.

21. People who grew up watching black-and-white TV when they were younger dream in more monochrome settings while people who grew up watching color TV have more vivid and colorful dreams.

Family_watching_television_1958 20. Visually impaired people dream too. Those who lost their sight later in life can see visual images in their dreams, while blind people who don’t dream visually can dream in sound, smell, and touch.

19.  We only dream of faces of real people we have encountered but might not remember, because people usually see hundreds of faces every day.

18. Between 18 – 38% of people say they have experienced at least one precognitive dream, and about 70% have experienced déjà vu.

17. Daydreaming, according to psychologists, may be related to dreams that occurred during sleep.  However, they require different mental processes.

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16. Within 5 minutes of waking up, half of dreams are forgotten. Within 10 minutes, 90% are forgotten. In just 10 minutes, however, people are more likely to remember their dreams when they are awakened during REM sleep.

15. Dreams of unpreparedness, falling, flying, and public humiliation come from common human anxieties and seem to transcend social and economic boundaries.

Flying_to_Paradise_Stock_7_by_SimplyBackgrounds 14. The inventor of the sewing machine, Elias Howe, said the cannibals who chased him in his nightmares held spears that looked like the needle he designed.

13. Falling dreams typically occur in the early stages of sleep. The muscle spasms of these dreams are called “myoclonic jerks.”

12. Even fetuses in the womb dream.  Even with the lack of visual stimuli, scientists think their dreams come from sound and touch sensations.

11. Experienced by 40% of the population, sleep paralysis occurs when a sleeper awakens and recognizes his or her surroundings, but is unable to move for up to one minute.

10. Around 70% of characters in men’s dreams are other men, whereas women dream of an equal amount of men and women.

9. Plato believed that dreams originate in the organs of the belly. He described the liver as the “biological seed of the dreams.”

8. Research involving students suggests that waking someone up at the beginning of REM stage of sleep can cause irritability and hallucinations, and can eventually lead to psychosis.

7. William Shakespeare used dreams to help develop characters and advance the plot in many of his plays.

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6. The Greeks regarded dreams as messages from the gods, and would sometimes sleep in sacred places to conjure significant dreams.

5. Children tend to have shorter dreams than adults do, and 40% of them are nightmares.  Scientists believe this is because dreams act as a coping mechanism.

4. Studies have revealed that animals (mammals in particular) dream just like humans.

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3. Known as “Dream Incorporation,” while sleeping you may include or incorporate sounds and stimuli from your surrounding environment into your dream. For example, if your brother is playing a loud guitar next door, you may dream you are at a concert.

2. The word “dream” is most related to the West Germanic “draugmus,” meaning “deception,” “illusion,” or “phantom.”

1. Toddlers do not appear in their own dreams until the age of 3 or 4.

Which fact did you find the most surprising?  Comment below!

Four Ways to Help You Improve Your Sleep

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Four Ways for Improving Sleep

Environment can make a big difference in how well we sleep. One way to improve the quality of sleep is as simple as changing your bedroom. Sleep Junkie has some great tips to help make your nights more restful, including:

603967 Color matters…

The paint choice for your bedroom may seem like only a cosmetic preference, but it can really influence how well you sleep. Studies suggest that neutral colors are best for a bedroom because they provide a calming and relaxing vibe. Loud and harsh colors can actually distract and even irritate your eyes while you try to settle in for the night…If you want to redecorate, think about how the color might look or affect you as you drift off.

Darker is better for sleep…

It is important to make your room as dark as possible in order for most people to get a restful night’s sleep. To do this, you should use shades and curtains. If your room faces towards the sunrise and you don’t awake at the crack of dawn, than blackout drapes can help improve your shut eye, and eliminate pesky streetlights…The less light the more likely you are to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.”

Invest in a good, comfortable mattress…

The mattress that you choose is absolutely critical to how well you sleep… There is nothing more disturbing to your sleep than a lumpy and uncomfortable mattress.

Don’t forget the details…

There are a number of other extra things that you can incorporate into your bedroom to lull you to sleep. After you have selected a comfortable mattress be sure to include fresh sheets and a cozy comforter. All-cotton sheets keep your bed breathable and feel nice against your skin.

There are a number of things to consider when bettering your bedroom for a restful night’s sleep. Incorporating a few or all of these suggestions are sure to make your sleeping environment much more calming and relaxing.  While these things may take a few extra moments to transform your bedroom into a sleeping haven, it will be worth every minute once you realize how restful your sleep can actually be.

To read the article in full please click HERE.

Here at OMI, we can’t help rearrange your room, but we can help by providing comfortable mattresses, pillows, sheets and other accessories to help you achieve the best (and safest) night’s sleep.

Doctors Prescribe Sleep

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In today’s world of go-go-go attitudes, many people don’t find time to get a full night of sleep.   After a short night of sleep we all feel the effects: drowsiness, a lack of energy and just not feeling up to our full potential.  But what other effects are caused by not enough sleep?

Recently the New York Times published the article “Cheating Ourselves of Sleep,” in which they discuss the many harmful effects of the lack of a full night of sleep:

“Research shows that most people require seven or eight hours of sleep to function optimally. Failing to get enough sleep night after night can compromise your health and may even shorten your life. From infancy to old age, the effects of inadequate sleep can profoundly affect memory, learning, creativity, productivity and emotional stability, as well as your physical health.”

To see the full article click HERE.

Remember to take time for yourself.  Get the sleep your body needs!

Companies to Watch

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Sleep Retailers’ BEDROOM Magazine has released an issue of 2013 Companies to Watch, and OMI made the cut! A list of 20 companies in the industry was released after Las Vegas Market, where we introduced our new GOLS certification and enlarged showroom. The article is available to view online HERE.

OMI / California-based Organic Mattresses, Inc (OMI)’s impressive large-scale Organic Mattress Eco-Factory™ further substantiates its commitment to maintaining a smoke-free, fragrance-free, and cruelty-free environment. As the first US mattress manufacturer to receive GOLS certification on a mattress, OMI solidified its position as a luxury mattress manufacturer with an entire line of certified-organic latex and innerspring mattresses and sleep accessories. Visit www.omimattress.com or call 800.951.9196.”

Do you need a new pillow?

I just came across this great blog from our sister company, Lifekind.  I figured I would share it with you:

How do you tell when you need a new pillow?

We all have a favorite pillow on our bed that we love and gravitate toward. Mine has a special pillow cover, so I know exactly which one it is. It started out so nice and tall, and slowly, over time, became as flat as a pancake without my even realizing how much it was changing.It got me thinking: How do we really know whether a pillow is right for us or when it’s time to replace it?Here are some questions that can help you determine when it’s time to replace that beloved pillow. A “Yes” answer to any question is a good indicator it may be time to move on:
Is your pillow misshapen or lumpy?  Place it on a flat surface. Rather than laying flat,  do you notice lumps or a misshapen surface?
Does your pillow fail the “force test”?  For latex pillows, place your hand in the center of the pillow and push down. Is there sufficient resistance, or does your hand go all the way down to the surface underneath?For down pillows, fold them in half and then let them go. Natural-down pillows should slowly regain their shape, while synthetic down should spring back quickly. If they don’t, it may be time to move on.
Do you ache when you wake up in the morning?
Did you buy your pillow more than 24 months ago?
Do you wake frequently to readjust your pillow or change your head’s position?  Having an inadequate or uncomfortable pillow can cause pain and prevent a restful night’s sleep. If your neck or back hurt, it may mean your pillow isn’t properly supporting your neck throughout the night.  If you wake up periodically to readjust your head, it’s also reducing the amount of rest you’re getting. Without good, deep sleep, it can be harder to function throughout the day.Discovery News posted an article explaining why pillows become heavier as they age: “With just two years of use, one-third of a pillow’s weight is comprised of dead skin cells, bugs, and dust mites and their droppings.”  (For more information on what may be inside your pillow, visit Discovery News HERE)

Read the full article on their blog

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After I read this, I went home and checked my pillow, and found that my pillow needed to be replaced too! I chose the Crush 100% Natural Shredded Rubber Pillow for myself, while my husband enjoys a firmer pillow, so I am thinking a great holiday gift would be the Molded 100%-Natural Rubber Latex Pillow! I also saw the importance of a Pillow Barrier Cover for our pillows, to protect them from the things that we don’t want getting into them.

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The Crush 100% Natural Shredded Rubber Pillow

Certified Organic Cotton Bed-Bug and Dust-Mite Pillow Barrier Cover

Wool-Wrapped 100% Natural Shredded Rubber Pillow

100% Certified Organic Cotton Pillow

The Molded and Contour 100% Natural Rubber Latex Pillows

Pillows make such a great economical choice for a gift to help family members sleep safer. With the holidays fast approaching, why not give a small piece of comfort with an OMI pillow. Or if you’ve determined that you need to replace your favorite pillow, click HERE to find your local retailer to try out an OMI pillow today.

What Your Sleep Position Says About You

When you go to bed every night you flop around until you find that perfect position in bed.  A comfortable position is not just your key to a comfy night’s sleep, it can offer insights into your personality traits.

A study of 1,000 sleepers analyzed by body language expert Robert Phipps found that there were 4 main types of sleeping positions and each position pointed to specific personality traits.  How do you sleep?

The Fetal Position

If you curl up into a ball when you sleep you are not alone.  About half of the study group slept in a fetal position.  According to the survey, sleepers who are sleeping in the fetal position are looking for comfort and are often constant worriers.  While they are very conscientious during waking hours, these are people who tend to over think their tasks and daily lives.  Also tend to be shy and sensitive, though they present a tough exterior to the world.

The Log Position

The log sleep position is when you sleep straight in a vertical line, with your arms at your sides.  Nearly a third of the people studied slept like a “log” and this can indicate that they are a bit rigid with their personalities.

The Yearner

The yearner is when you lay on your side with your arms outstretched.  The study showed about a quarter of sleepers sleep in the yearner position. Yearners are people who get up in the morning with an excitement to get out there and chase their dreams.

The Freefall Position

 The freefall position is when you sleep on your stomach with your arms and legs all over the bed.  Only a fifth of the people studied were considered freefallers.  The freefall position can indicate that the sleeper is seeking control of time and space in a way that they do not feel they have when they are awake.

Regardless of what position you sleep in, you should be doing it on an OrganicPedic Mattress.  Discover your perfect position by visiting an OMI retailer near you.  Find them on our Store Locator HERE.

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