WE all know the importance of a good night’s sleep, but many are aware of the struggles when it doesn’t go according to plan. 

Wearing socks to bed certainly divides sleepers, but an expert has revealed why they could actually be key. 

Martin Seeley, Sleep Expert and CEO of MattressNextDay, explained how socks in bed can help achieve a deep sleep.

He said: “Wearing socks to bed can help warm up your feet, which can signal to your body that it’s time to sleep. 

“This can help you fall asleep faster and experience deeper sleep. 

“When your feet are cold, your blood vessels constrict, which can make it more difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep.”

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The sleep expert added that it may not work on people who find sock-wearing in bed very uncomfortable. 

Deep sleep, also known as slow-wave sleep or stage 3 of non-REM sleep, is an important stage of the sleep cycle that provides many benefits to the body and brain. 

The average adult needs 7 to 9 hours of sleep and spends 10-15 per cent of it in deep sleep.

How can I get a deeper sleep?

1. Stick to a consistent sleep schedule

Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends. This helps regulate your body’s internal clock and improve the quality of your sleep.

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2. Create a relaxing bedtime routine

Develop a calming routine before bed to help your body and mind relax. This could include taking a warm bath, practising relaxation techniques like meditation or deep breathing, or reading a book.

3. Use lavender essential oil

Lavender has calming and soothing properties and can help promote relaxation and deep sleep. You can use lavender essential oil by diffusing it in your bedroom or adding a few drops to your bathwater.

4. Make your bedroom conducive to sleep

Keep your bedroom quiet, cool, and dark. Invest in a comfortable mattress and pillow, and use comfortable, breathable bedding.

5. Avoid caffeine and alcohol

Caffeine and alcohol can interfere with your sleep, so avoid drinking them in the evening.

6. Manage stress

Stress can interfere with your sleep. Find ways to manage stress throughout the day, such as exercise, meditation, or talking with a friend or therapist.

7. Exercise regularly

Exercise during the day can help improve the quality of your sleep at night. However, it's important to avoid strenuous exercise close to bedtime.

8. Try weighted blankets

Weighted blankets provide gentle pressure that can help promote relaxation and reduce stress and anxiety. This can help improve the quality of your sleep and increase the amount of deep sleep you get.

9. Sleep in a hammock

Research has shown that swaying in a hammock can help people fall asleep faster and experience deeper sleep. This may be due to the rhythmic movement that simulates being rocked to sleep.

10. Limit screen time before bed

The blue light emitted from electronic devices can interfere with your sleep. Try to avoid using devices for at least an hour before bed.

11. Practice sleep meditation

Sleep meditation involves focusing on your breath and relaxing your body to help calm your mind and fall asleep faster. There are many guided sleep meditations available online that can help you get started.

Why is deep sleep important?

Deep sleep is when the body produces growth hormone, which helps repair and regenerate tissues, muscles, and bones.

Getting enough deep sleep can help prevent hormone imbalances and associated health problems.

Deep sleep plays a role in regulating emotions, mood, and behaviour. 

It helps reduce stress and anxiety, and promotes a more positive outlook on life.

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Deep sleep is important for consolidating memories and learning new information. 

It helps the brain transfer information from short-term to long-term memory and strengthens neural connections, which improves cognitive function and performance.

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