This is news to me, as it’s no secret that I’m not a great sleeper. There are new studies out linking a lack of sleep to dementia and Alzheimer’s so this is serious business! Some swear by Melatonin, Valerian, hot baths and warm milk. Let’s take this as a wake up call to renew our efforts to spend a restful seven hours each night (minimum) sleeping.
A study of more than 1,000 UK adults showed that 25 percent of those who spend less than five hours in the land of Nod suffer from memory malfunction which affects their quality of life.
Participants aged 18 to 80 were asked to measure their sleep against five different “everyday” memories: having to check whether they’ve done something; forgetting to tell somebody something important; where things are normally kept; doing something they intended to do such as posting a letter and finding it difficult to concentrate.
Poor sleep was classed as under five hours a night and the results found that all aspects of memory are affected by low levels of sleep.
The most commonly reported memory failure was having to check whether they had done something with 50 per cent struggling with this problem at least once a week but the figure rose to two thirds for poor sleepers.
The independent academic research by psychologists at University of Leeds and leading bed maker Silentnight looked at the effects of sleep on memory and how people function day-to-day, outside of a lab, among the general public.
Dr Anna Weighall, a developmental cognitive psychologist with expertise in sleep research who led the study said: “Good sleep leads to improved memory performance and this leads to a better quality of life.
“It has long been said this is the case and we have noticed such findings in a lab, but this is the first time we have gone out to people in their everyday lives and achieved measurable results.
“It proves to us beyond doubt that those people getting a good night’s sleep can potentially have a better quality of life and hopefully, as a result, be happier.
So what can we do? Well here is a video of a breathing technique to help the insomniacs get back to bed, and sleep well.