Read a Real Book Before Bed to Get Better Sleep

Ever since I was a little girl I have read just before I go to sleep. The books have changed over the years but I still love to read a real paper book every night. But now I have developed a new habit that could be effecting my sleep.
If I watch TV in the evening prior to going up to bed, while I watch a movie I look up on my cell phone or Surface computer the director or the actors or the screen writer and that quickly devolves into me no longer watching a terrific movie, to looking up every interview of said, director, actor and screenwriter. Suddenly, I look up at it is 12:00 midnight and I have been staring at a blue light screen for hours. We know we shouldn't look at TV screens and computer screens or cell phone screens before we go to bed, but we do. It is interrupting our melatonin production thus the quantity and quality of our sleep and dreams. Here is the research.

Online survey reveals new epidemic of sleeplessness.

Date - April 3, 2014

Source - University of Hertfordshire


Nearly six in ten (59%) people in Britain are sleep deprived, new research shows. 78% of people are exposed to disruptive blue light from computers and smartphones before going to bed, and only 10% of people strongly agree that they have pleasant dreams. A new article outlines some steps people can take to improve their sleeping experience.

New online research, conducted to coincide with the publication of Professor Richard Wiseman's latest book Night School, suggests that nearly six in ten (59%) of adults in Britain -- over 28 million people -- are now sleep deprived and getting seven hours or less sleep each night. This is a significant increase on the 2013 figure of thirty-nine per cent taken from a previous study.

Richard Wiseman, professor in the Public Understanding of Psychology at the University of Hertfordshire, commented: "This is a huge rise, and the results are extremely worrying because getting less than seven hours sleep a night is below the recommended guidelines, and is associated with a range of problems, including an increased risk of weight gain, heart attacks, diabetes and cancer."
To assess one potential cause of the sleeplessness epidemic, respondents were also asked whether they used a computer, smartphone or tablet in the two hours before going to bed.
"The blue light from these devices suppress the production of the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin, and so it's important to avoid them before bedtime," commented Wiseman.
Seventy-eight per cent (78%) of respondents indicated that they use such devices during this period. Among 18-24 year olds this figure increases to a remarkable ninety-one per cent (91%).
"The 2013 survey revealed that around 57% of people in the UK were using these devices, so we are seeing a significant rise in the amount of blue light before bedtime," said Wiseman.
The survey also suggested that the vast majority of people's dreams are far from sweet, with just ten per cent (10%) of respondents strongly agreeing with the statement 'I would describe my dreams as pleasant'.
Professor Wiseman noted: "The dream data revealed considerable variation across the UK, with those in London and the Southwest agreeing the most, and those in the Northwest and Midlands agreeing the least."
Ten science-based tips have been compiled by Professor Wiseman to help the country get a better night's sleep.
10 science-based tips to a better night's sleep:
1) Banish the blues: Avoid using computers, smartphones or tablets in the two hours before you head to bed. The blue light stimulates your brain and prevents you feel sleepy.
2) The list: Make a list of all of the things that you have to do the next day or that are playing on your mind. This helps prevent you lying in bed thinking about these issues.
3) Tire your brain: If you are struggling to sleep, make your brain tired by thinking of an animal for each letter of the alphabet ('A' is for 'Ant', 'B' is for 'Bear').
4) Move your bed: You have evolved to feel safe when you can spot danger early and have time to run away, and so will feel most relaxed when your bed faces the door and is furthest from it.
5) Reach for a banana: Eat a banana before you head to bed. They're rich in carbohydrates, and these help relax your body and brain.
6) Reverse psychology: Actively trying to stay awake actually makes you feel tired, so try keeping your eyes open and focus on not falling asleep.
7) Wear socks: If you have bad circulation, your feet will get cold and cause sleeplessness. To avoid the problem, wear a pair of warm socks to bed.
8) Avoid the lure of the nightcap: Although a small amount of alcohol puts you to sleep quicker, it also gives you a more disturbed night and disrupts dreaming.
9) The power of association: Ensure that the same piece of soporific music is quietly playing each time you fall asleep. Over time you'll come to associate the music with sleep, and so listening to it will help you to nod off.
10) Do a jigsaw: If you lie awake for more than twenty minutes, get up and do something non-stimulating for a few minutes, such as working on a jigsaw.
UK Dream Data
The percentage of people in each region strongly agreeing to the statement 'In general, I would describe my dreams as pleasant' was as follows: London 13% South West 13% Scotland 12% Yorkshire and the Humber 12% North East 11% South East 10% East of England 10% Wales 9% North West 7% West Midlands 7% East Midlands 6%

Story Source:
The above story is based on materials provided by University of Hertfordshire. Note: Materials may be edited for content and leng

Patti Wood, MA, Certified Speaking Professional - The Body Language Expert. For more body language insights go to her website at Check out Patti's website for her new book "SNAP, Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language and Charisma" at Also check out Patti's YouTube channel at