Let's talk about sleep - the importance of rest

bride floating in the air with head on pillow trying to sleep

A new nationwide study has revealed as many as 86 percent of us now regularly struggle to drift off - not good if you're wanting to look and feel your best physically and mentally in the run up to your wedding day and on-the-day itself!

Research has revealed the top 20 natural sleep inducers in the modern age – and counting sheep or mugs of Horlicks did not make the cut. In fact, modern Brits are more likely to get intimate with their other half, listen to a true crime podcast, watch a comedy show, tidy their room from top to bottom, or cuddle up with their pet. But the survey shows, simply reading a book is the number one snooze inducing activity (23 percent), followed by scrolling through social media (22 percent), despite the consensus that looking at phones is bad for our sleep patterns.

A mindful 16 percent say stretching or yoga is a great way to feel sleepy, while ten percent practice mindful breathing and 13 percent feel you can't beat a cuddle with you partner, according to the survey by Leonardo Hotels UK & Ireland In addition, 13 percent spray lavender mist on their pillow, and the same number like to listen to the radio to help them drop off. The survey also suggests Brits love a routine, with 72 percent saying they go to sleep at the same time every night – 10.16pm on average.

According to the data, the main barrier to getting a good night's sleep is stress (47 percent), followed by money worries (31 percent), too many things to do (25 percent) and the pressures of work (16 percent). As many as 14 percent of those polled blame their partners' snoring for their lack of sleep, while 11 percent said their partner's constant tossing and turning makes it impossible to drop off. In fact, it takes Brits an average of 39 minutes to fall asleep, with the average person getting 6 hours and 36 minutes sleep on average, well below the NHS recommended eight hours of shut eye.

Suzanne Cannon, Head of Marketing at Leonardo Hotels UK & Ireland, says: "We know that getting a good night's sleep is incredibly important for health and wellbeing, and the struggle to drift off is felt by so many. A night's rest is paramount in our guest objectives, and we believe that the right room setup is key. At Leonardo Hotels, we pride ourselves on providing our guests with the utmost comfort. Our exclusive DREAM beds, which feature intelligent body support, bespoke feather and down duvets and soft fluffy pillows, and high-quality air-con which can be set to the ideal temperature, means our guests can look forward to waking up fully replenished and ready for the day ahead."

Overall, 29 percent of those surveyed admitted they still have a soft toy or teddy bear from their childhood in their bedroom, ready for a bedtime cuddle. And when it comes to the perfect temperature for sleep, the data revealed a cool 18 degrees is the sleep sweet spot. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the nation's sleep deficit leaves us feeling sluggish (60 percent), irritable (48 percent) and lacking in concentration (28 percent). And a resounding 94 percent of Brits agree that happiness consists of getting a decent night's sleep.

THE 20 BEST WAYS TO FALL ASLEEP, ACCORDING TO BRITS

  1. Read a book - 23 percent
  2. Scroll through social media - 22 percent
  3. Stretching/yoga - 16 percent
  4. Cuddle up to partner - 13 percent
  5. Spray lavender on the pillow - 13 percent
  6. Cuddle up to dog/cat - 11 percent
  7. Practise mindful breathing - 10 percent
  8. Tidy bedroom from top to bottom - 9 percent
  9. Watch a comedy show - 9 percent
  10. Wear a sleep mask - 6 percent
  11. Listen to the radio - 6 percent
  12. Get intimate with partner - 6 percent
  13. Write a to-do list for the next day - 5 percent
  14. Listen to a guided meditation - 5 percent
  15. Drink chamomile tea - 4 percent
  16. Dream of being on a tropical beach - 4 percent
  17. Listen to a true crime podcast - 4 percent
  18. Get a massage from partner - 3 percent
  19. Write in a journal - 3 percent
  20. Listen to whale song - 2 percent

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