National Sleep Awareness Week is March 7-13

National Sleep Awareness Week is March 7-13, sponsored by the National Sleep Foundation  as an annual public education and awareness campaign to promote the importance of sleep.

Many people don’t sleep well because of their bed.  We’ve all heard that you should replace your mattress every 7-10 years, but it’s not just because of all the hype about bed bugs, body oils, skin cells and other unsavory things that can lurk in an old mattress, but also because mattresses wear out.  A saggy and unsupportive mattress can lead to back pain, hip pain, shoulder pain and other ailments that add up to a restless night’s sleep.

We took the opportunity to ask experts on sleep and finding the right mattress for you.

Connecting Women (CW):.  How many hours of sleep per night should an adult have? Children? 
Experts vary in their views about how much sleep is needed, but here is a general guide by the National Sleep Foundation
How Much Sleep Do You Really Need
CW:  What are some benefits of healthful sleep? 
When we sleep well, we wake up feeling refreshed and alert for our daily activities. Sleep affects how we look, feel and perform on a daily basis, and can have a major impact on our overall quality of life.   During sleep our muscles repair themselves from day's stress, our brain sorts out and consolidates memories, and our bodies release hormones that regulating growth and appetite. When we sleep well, we wake up prepared for the day, able to concentrate, make decisions, be productive and engage fully in work, school and social activities.
 On the other hand, short sleep duration is linked with:
  • Increased risk of motor vehicle accidents
  • Increase in body mass index – a greater likelihood of obesity due to an increased appetite caused by sleep deprivation
  • Increased risk of diabetes and heart problems
  • Increased risk for psychiatric conditions including depression and substance abuse
  • Decreased ability to pay attention, react to signals or remember new information
CW: How do mattresses affect our sleep? 
A proper mattress helps us to sleep sounder and deeper.  A good mattress has the right amount of softness or firmness to relieve pressure points and support heavier body parts so that we are able to rest comfortably in one position for longer periods of time.
An improper mattress may be too soft or too firm, or a worn out mattress may sag or retain body impressions that cause us to toss and turn in order to get comfortable.   
CW: What are some tips in finding the right kind of mattress? 
 Mattrresses are very individual.   According to Jeff Scorziell, president of Anatomic Global, a leading US manufacturer of memory foam mattresses, many consumers make the mistake of buying a brand name instead of getting a mattress that feels best for them.  Scorziell, who has sold thousands of mattresses as a former retailer, gives this advice:
To test out a memory foam mattress, Scorziell recommends laying on it for at least three to five minutes, as some visco foam must actually be warmed up by your body temperature in order to perform optimally.
“Lay on your back, your side, however you sleep.  Get a feel for the mattress.  Some might feel like wet sand, and some might have a denser feel.  Some are softer, some are plusher.  The feel of the mattress is not necessarily good or bad, just different,” says Scorziell. 

Among the latest innovations in memory foam is the formulation of the visco itself.  Anatomic Global developed a proprietary soy plant-based EcoMemoryFoam that health-minded consumers favor because it contains fewer petroleum-based chemicals.  Not only do these feel better underneath you, they smell better, especially when the bed is new. 
 Another evolution in memory foam is aeration.  Anatomic Global pioneered extreme open-cell technology which offers nine times air ventilation of standard memory foams.  The open-cell foam not only dissipates heat, it is not affected by ambient temperature within 30 degrees, so the bed’s performance does not change when it warms up or gets cold in the bedroom.  
If you prefer a traditional innerspring mattress, the general rule is more coils the better. One mattress maker whose products have been called "fit for a king" owes its hallmark sensational feel to its coils. Not only are E.S. Kluft & Company mattresses made with world-class craftsmanship and the finest materials available, they feature a technologically advanced design. Kluft’s nested, individually wrapped English premium steel springs provide proper balance, true motion separation, correct support and optimum pressure relief.
E.S. Kluft & Company's most celebrated mattress is the $33,000 Palais Royale, an ultra-luxurious mattress hand-tailored by skilled artisans  using the world's finest materialsinlcuidng an abundant blend of cashmere, mohair, New Zealand Joma wool and Talalay latex .  The layers  conform to your body to eliminate pressure points while layers of breathable certified organic cotton prevent heat and moisture buildup for unmatched comfort. These beds feature thousands of premium English springs encased in calico cotton to minimize motion transfer and to provide extraordinary support. Plus, each mattress is hand-tufted and hand-side-stitched to secure the inner layers of upholstery and enhance the overall performance from edge-to-edge. The result is the best of old world craftsmanship and sophisticated new sleep technologies. The Palais Royale is sold exclusively at Bloomingdale’s. 
Many manufacturers are adding adjustable beds to their collections to meet the comfort and lifestyle needs of today's customers.  Those archaic infomercials starring two elderly folk being folded up in an adjustable bed were ahead of their time.  One cutting-edge company, Sapapa by Aminach, offers adjustable beds that are popular with customers of all ages, with features like iPad/iPod plug ins, speakers systems in the headboard and adjustments for comfort for all types of activities, from checking email, e-shopping, watching TV, doing homework, reading or whatever you do in bed.  All of the Sapapa adjustable beds feature orthopedic mattresses with a reinforced middle section to prevent hamocking; plus, these beds are not just incredibly comfortable, they come in high-fashion styles and colors.
CW:  Promote site/service etc. (including social media networks)
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