What Is A "Sleep Divorce" And Should You File For One?

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If you love your partner but enjoyed sounder sleep when you were single, you’re not alone. From snoring to sleep-talking, to mismatched morning schedules, many factors can make it difficult for partners to get quality sleep together, which is why some choose to defy the cultural norm and sleep in separate rooms (or at least separate beds). This doesn’t necessarily signal that anything is wrong with the relationship, and in fact—given that poor quality sleep can seriously affect your mood and disposition—can actually be a great boon for romance.

Obvious issues like chronic snoring or blanket-stealing aside, some people simply don’t sleep as well next to another body, no matter how close or loving their relationship with that person may be. Sleep is too important to sacrifice for the sake of fitting into a cultural norm, so it’s time we stop stigmatizing couples for choosing not to sleep together.

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5 Of The Most Bizarre Things People Have Done While Sleepwalking

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Sleepwalking can sometimes be the stuff of nightmares. Usually, sleepwalking is more or less harmless or unremarkable. Once in a while, though, people exhibit extreme behaviours while asleep—usually with no recollection of them when they wake up! 

Remember that bothersome, persistent sleepwalking may signal a sleep disorder, so if you sleepwalk on a regular basis, it may be wise to consult your healthcare professional.

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How To Get A Proper Sleep At A Hotel

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Whether you're a seasoned jetsetter or a grounded homebody, getting a good night’s sleep in a hotel can be a challenge. There’s actually a solid biological reason behind this unfortunate truth—when you sleep in a new place, your brain stays half awake (to butcher the science a little). This is probably an evolutionary adaptation we’ve developed to help keep us safe in unfamiliar places… not that that's any comfort to a weary traveller battling jet lag!

Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to get a better night’s sleep at a hotel, from planning your stay to unwinding when you arrive. The key is to trick your body into believing that you’re in a familiar, non-threatening environment. 

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4 Weird Things That Happen While You Sleep

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Think sleep is peaceful, inactive, and quiet? Think again! Besides being a crucially important time for healing and recovery, sleep can be a stage for downright bizarre body behaviour. All kinds of wacky things can happen to your body while you sleep, even if you don’t consciously sense them or remember them the next morning.

Full body paralysis

Not to be confused with sleep paralysis—a terrifying subject we covered in an earlier post, paralysis is actually a regular part of sleep. During the rapid-eye-movement (REM phase), your body becomes temporarily paralyzed, probably to prevent you from acting out your dreams and hurting yourself!

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The Case For Delaying School Start Times

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Research shows that teens are among the least likely to get enough sleep on a regular basis. Given that sleep deprivation causes problems with memory, attention, and analytical reasoning, it’s no surprise that it’s a recipe for poor learning outcomes. Moreover, if teens weren’t moody enough, not getting enough sleep hampers a person’s ability to regulate their emotions in the short term, and can predispose them to mood disorders in the long term. And since most teens need about nine hours of sleep a night for optimal health, it makes sense at first glance that delaying school start times would improve their health and their learning outcomes. 

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5 Things You Would Never Think Are Affecting Your Sleep 

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You know that you should minimize the time you spend on your smartphone and avoid drinking coffee in the evening, but did you know that it’s harder to sleep during certain moon cycles, and that your choice of toothpaste can affect the quality of your rest? Here are five little-known factors that could be stealing your good night’s sleep. 

A full moon

The word lunatic comes from the latin root luna, and the meaning of the word stems from the belief that moon cycles can cause temporary mental disturbances. To find out whether or not that’s true, you’d have to ask your local werewolf, but there’s good evidence that a full moon makes it harder to sleep. The mechanism behind this effect is still largely unknown.

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Orthosomnia: The New Sleep Disorder You’ve Never Heard Of

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Sleep tracking devices and apps are all the rage, but is there such a thing as taking the pursuit of a good night’s sleep too far? According to a recent study, the era of the quantified self is responsible for an entirely new sleep disorder called orthosomnia. The researchers found that for a portion of people using wearable sleep tracking devices, a "perfectionist quest for the ideal sleep" actually exacerbated their insomnia, made them more resistant to therapy, and raised their stress levels unnecessarily. The term is a combination of the roots ortho, meaning correct or straight, and somnia, meaning sleep. Sleep tracking devices and apps are all the rage, but is there such a thing as taking the pursuit of a good night’s sleep too far? According to a recent study , the era of the quantified self is responsible for an entirely new sleep disorder called orthosomnia. The researchers found that for a portion of people using wearable sleep tracking devices, a "perfectionist quest for the ideal sleep" actually exacerbated their insomnia, made them more resistant to therapy, and raised their stress levels unnecessarily. The term is a combination of the roots ortho, meaning correct or straight, and somnia, meaning sleep. 

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5 Common Nightmares And Theories About Their Meaning

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According to many experts, dream interpretation is a bit of a fool's errand, but it’s still fun to speculate about what your dreams might mean. Here are five common nightmares and what they may say about your life.

Being naked in public

It’s 9:15 on a Monday and you’re late for the big meeting. Cursing traffic, you speed-walk into the office (doing your best to look casual), burst into the meeting room, look down at your briefcase and… it seems you’ve forgotten more than just setting your alarm. If you’ve had a nightmare about being naked in public—especially in a high-stakes scenario like a work meeting or get-together with your in-laws—you may feel vulnerable or insecure about something important in your real life.

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How Poor Quality Sleep May Be Hurting Your Fertility

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If you’re trying to have a baby or intend on having one at some point in the future, you probably know that your overall health is linked to your fertility. Did you know that sleep is no exception to this rule? In case you didn’t have enough to worry about while trying to start a family, research shows both men and women who don’t get enough sleep on a regular basis are more likely to experience problems with their fertility. Luckily, fixing your sleep schedule will affect your life in a myriad of positive ways beyond your ability to have children.

The reasons behind the infertility-sleep connection are different for men and women, though in both cases, hormones seem to play an important role. One study showed that both men who sleep too long and those who sleep too little are less likely to impregnate their partners—seven to eight hours seems to be just right for fertility. Of course, as with all studies that try to establish a cause and effect relationship between two events, it’s possible that other factors play the deciding role. For instance, poor sleep can also affect your libido and body weight. That said, the study authors did their best to control for these variables.

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3 Common Reasons You Can’t Stay Asleep And What To Do About Them

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When you make an effort to get to bed on time, waking up in the middle of the night can be like a slap in the face. For many people, it’s hard enough to get to sleep at a reasonable time—why won’t our bodies just cooperate and stay asleep through the night?

This experience is often referred to as middle insomnia, and it’s more common than you might think. Here are three common causes for middle insomnia and what you can do to mitigate them. Remember—if the problem persists, it’s always worth seeking the advice of a healthcare professional.

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How To Share A Bed With Your Partner Without Losing Sleep

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If you share your bed with a loved one, you know that it’s not always warm cuddles and pillow-talk. Sleeping next to another person can be wonderful—especially for men, who reliably sleep better next to a partner, while women tend to experience more sleep disturbances next to a partner than when they sleep alone. Things can be especially difficult when you and your partner’s schedules, light preferences, or other bedroom habits don’t sync up.

Here are five ways to make sleeping as a couple easier. Put these tips into practice, and your health (and relationship) will be better off.

Tackle snoring together

Snoring can be a sensitive issue for couples, but this is one annoying habit you definitely shouldn’t ignore. While some people are just predisposed to snoring for anatomical reasons, it can also be a symptom of sleep apnea —a potentially fatal medical disorder. If your partner snores, don’t be afraid to bring it up (gently) and encourage them to seek medical attention.

Consider two doonas

A "European-style" bed set up with two separate doonas can make it much easier to sleep next to someone who tends to tug on the covers. You’ll also be much less likely to disturb your bedmate if you go to sleep or wake up at a different time.

Create a plan of action for restless-child-syndrome

If you have kids, you’ve probably experienced the joy of waking up to a short, shadowy figure looming above you in the middle of the night whispering "mommy (or daddy)… I can’t sleep!" It can be hard to snap out of a groggy state at 3am, so decide what you’ll do in your waking hours—including who gets to take the little one back to bed. (We recommend a trade-off system).

Set boundaries around light and noise

This is especially important if you and your partner have different sleep schedules. Agree to employ headphones, white noise machines, eye masks, and earplugs as needed to mitigate the difference between your schedules.

Go mattress shopping as a team

A mattress is an important investment in your health, and if you’re both sleeping on it, you should make the purchase together. Regal’s in-store specialists are well equipped to find a mattress that suits your needs as a couple—just be sure that you’re both present for the fitting!

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Why You Should Sleep Like An Olympian, Even If You’re A Couch Potato

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We can’t all snowboard like Jarryd Hughes or ski like Matt Graham, but we can take a page from their books when it comes to sleep. Every athlete worth their salt knows that rest is just as important as training when it comes to athletic performance. Thus, by necessity, Olympic athletes are champions in the sheets as well as on the field (when it comes to sleep, of course). That said, it’s important to know that quality sleep carries enormous benefits people across the physical activity spectrum. No matter how much exercise you do (or don’t) get, you need seven to nine hours of shuteye per night.

According to Dr. Mark Rosekind , a sleep specialist who works with Olympic medalists, sleep has only recently come to the forefront of interest for athletes. Blame our society’s counterproductive obsession with productivity and performance at the expense of recovery time.

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5 Items Every Nightstand Should Have

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If there’s one area in your room you should keep organized at all times, it’s your night table. Sleep is your most vulnerable time, and getting there requires some measure of peace and tranquility. Cluttering the closest surface to your bed with old coffee mugs and ramen containers is not exactly conducive to this state. Keep the space organized and stocked with these five essentials.

Glass of water

It’s not fun to wake up parched in the middle of the night, especially if you have to spend the next hour deciding whether you should drag yourself to the kitchen or resign yourself to your thirsty fate. Fix this issue with a touch of foresight—keep a fresh glass of water next to you while you sleep. Even if you don’t need it at night, drinking a cup of water first thing in the morning is a great way to jumpstart your metabolism.

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Do You Need More Sleep After Intense Exercise?

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Olympic athletes and their trainers have long emphasized the importance of quality sleep for athletic performance. Usain Bolt, reigning Olympic sprinting champion, has said: “Sleep is extremely important to me – I need to rest and recover in order for the training I do to be absorbed by my body.”

What if you’re not planning on breaking any world records, but just want to see gains in your performance at the gym? Is it just as important for you to prioritize sleep? Absolutely.

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3 Ways To Stop Your Gadgets From Keeping You Up At Night

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How many nights a week would you say that you sleep within arm’s reach of your smartphone? If it’s every night, you’re in the company of at least half of Australia, according to a recent survey. Unfortunately, snuggling with your phone may be hazardous to your health.

LED light from digital devices confuses our body’s sense of whether it’s daytime or nighttime, which makes it harder to fall and stay asleep. Aside from that, being within constant reach of your social networks, work email, and every other aspect of your life that’s tethered to your mobile phone can make it difficult to relax. This is especially true if you’re prone to anxiety and/or insomnia.

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Why Does White Noise Help Some People Sleep?

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True white noise is the electronic version of an enormous band playing every single note (and intervals between notes) at the same volume, at the same time. It’s technically defined as the even distribution of all sound frequencies within a normal audible range, just like white light is an even distribution of all colour wavelengths within a normal visual range.

Fans, crackling campfire sounds, and rainstorms—that is, sounds you’re likely to hear from one of the many "white noise" apps available on your smartphone—are not true white noise. Rather, they’re colloquially referred to as "white noise" because they are types of consistent background noise. Genuine white noise is actually rather irritating to most people, since it contains a lot of high-frequency sound.

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5 Signs That You’re Sleep Deprived, Even If You Don’t Feel Tired

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Some people spend their days exhausted without ever realizing that they need more sleep. That’s because sleep deprivation often rears its ugly head in ways far less obvious than the feeling of tiredness—especially if you’re a heavy user of caffeine or other stimulants. Here are five subtle ways your body may be telling you to make sleep a priority.

You suffer from mood swings

Emotional regulation is a complex biochemical process. No matter how good your manners are or how hard you try to keep yourself in check, you’ll find it difficult to keep your cool if you’re not getting enough sleep. That’s because sleep deprivation impairs the parts of your brain responsible for keeping your emotions balanced and properly tethered to your environment.

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When Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep: Dreaming And Artificial Intelligence

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We already know that dreaming is a cross-species phenomenon. Dogs, cats, and even duck-billed platypuses dream. Renowned science fiction author Philip K. Dick once asked, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (His book with this title was the inspiration for Blade Runner, by the way). Turns out—in a way—they do.

In the interest of not jumping the gun, it’s important to say that researchers have not yet achieved anything like "true" artificial intelligence—that is, something that we can say is intelligent in the same way that humans (or dogs, cats, and duck-billed platypuses) are. Increasingly advanced examples of robots that can simulate intelligence abound, but we’re not yet living in the age of Bicentennial Man.

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5 Time-Tested Ways To Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions

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When the holiday buzz wears off and it’s time to get back to the grind, it’s all too easy to fold up your list of New Year’s resolutions and tuck it away in a drawer. Out of sight, out of mind, right?

We’re here to help you challenge that defeatist attitude and get the year off to running start.

Make your goals as specific as possible

Did you resolve to "read more books" or "get in shape"? Vague phrasing, and in turn, a vague mental concept of your goal, can make the process much more daunting than it has to be. Break your resolutions down into simple, manageable steps. Instead of telling yourself to read more books, resolve to read for 20 minutes before bed each day (bonus: this will likely help you get to sleep). Don’t aim to "get in shape"—choose a concrete workout schedule. Remember, every large achievement is made up of numerous small feats.

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How To Avoid Holiday Burnout With Quality Sleep

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Christmas is behind us, New Year’s celebrations approach, and if you’re like many Australians, you’re already well on track to experiencing the dreaded holiday burnout. The holiday season is supposed to leave us refreshed and ready to take on the new year, but if you don’t balance letting loose with a little self-care, you may end up more tired than you were on your first day off work!

As you may suspect if you’re a regular reader of this blog, your first line of defence against holiday burnout is getting adequate sleep. With a jam-packed holiday social schedule, It’s inevitable that your regular sleep schedule will shift somewhat, and that’s okay, but you should do what you can to maintain it. Now is as good a time as any to practice good sleep hygiene both before bed and throughout the day . Making sure your sleep routine doesn’t get wildly out of whack will make you better company at parties anyway.

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