I’m sure we’ve all been there. The alarm clock rudely chimes and suddenly we’re wondering “why is my bed more comfortable in the morning?”
Well, at least you’re not alone in your agony. As it turns out, there is a bit of science behind our morning sleepiness.
How Melatonin Explains a Comfortable Bed
When we sleep, our bodies produce a hormone called melatonin which makes us feel relaxed and comfortable, but once we wake up melatonin stops being produced.
Melatonin takes a little while to leave completely (between 20-50 minutes), so that explains the comfortable feeling you get upon waking, and why it eventually subsides. This also explains why if you wake up slowly, you're less likely to feel like this.
Getting the Rest Your Body Needs
If your bed feels much better in the morning, it could also be because your body isn't getting the requisite rest. There are 6 primary reasons that could explain why your bed feels much more inviting in the morning:
- You're using technology too soon before bed
- You're getting up in the dark
- You're drinking too much caffeine
- You're struggling to maintain a consistent bedtime
- You're spending too much time in the bedroom
- You're eating too soon before bed
Let's look at those in more detail:
1. Are You Turning Off Your Technology?
Technology is a wonderful thing, there’s no doubt about it. But as with most modern developments, a few first world problems have come along with it.
Electronics are the opposite of what we need before bed. The light from the device, whether that be a smartphone, tablet or TV, disrupts the body’s level of melatonin.
Melatonin is the hormone which dictates our sleep cycles, and if that’s all over the shop, then you won’t get the necessary amount of sleep cycles in before that alarm bell rings.
When it inevitably does however, you’ll be left feeling as though you got no sleep at all, even if you did hit the recommended eight hours.
2. Are You in the Dark?
Like many things, sometimes the solution is so much more straightforward than we originally thought.
While it’s important to set the scene before we sleep, it’s just as important to set the scene when we wake up too.
Attempting to crawl out of your lovely double bed while the room is still dark is only going to make it that much harder. Opening the curtains first thing will help activate the body’s natural circadian rhythms, and in turn help you feel that much more energised and ready to leave the comfort of your covers.
3. Are You Relying too Heavily on the Afternoon Caffeine Kick?
Caffeine takes a long time to leave your system, and by long, I mean over eight hours. Drinking tea or coffee after 2pm can have a massively adverse effect on your attempts to rest that evening.
Even if you’re not tossing and turning through to the daylight hours, the quality of your sleep will be what’s affected.
Since your mind and body are still being stimulated, it’ll be difficult for it to fully rest and recuperate, with a full sleep cycle perhaps only being achieved just as morning time approaches.
In that case, your brain will be woken well before it’s fully ready to, and you’ll end up feeling like you need a whole gallon of coffee before you can even contemplate leaving the safety of your duvet.
4. Are You Struggling to Stick to a Consistent Bed Time?
As children we’re taught to be in bed by a specific time each night, and yet as adults we throw these rules out the window.
Well, it turns out that, as much as it pains me to admit, our parents were right. A consistent bed time not only teaches the body when it should be tired, but when it should be awake too.
It may be that the reason your bed is so much more comfortable during the early hours, is simply because your body isn’t aware that it needs to be awake yet.
Erratic bed times can cause more chaos than we’re often aware of, so even the most basic of sleep schedules would help promote regulated sleeping patterns.
5. Are You Spending Too Much Time in the Bedroom?
In theory, the bedroom should be used for sleeping and relaxation only. I do understand however, that life often interrupts this golden rule, and bringing work into the bedroom is a habit we can easily slip into.
While it is tempting to just lock yourself away and crawl into a comfortable space while you study, write or type, allowing your work to encroach on your ‘safe space’ is a dangerous game.
The brain can’t help but associate certain spaces with specific tasks. Similar to how we associate certain smells with memories, if you’re consistently stressed within the same space you’re trying to sleep, then your brain won’t be able to switch off due to its association with feelings of intensity.
In turn, this will have an adverse effect on the quality of your sleep, and will make getting out of bed in the morning almost impossible.
If you can’t see yourself breaking away from working in bed anytime soon, try reducing the amount of times a week you work there. A change of scenery may have a positive effect on your productivity, as well as allowing your body to associate your bed with relaxation instead of trepidation.
6. Are You Eating Before Bed?
With modern life proving to be particularly hectic, eating your dinner 2-3 hours before bed is now virtually impossible.
Similar to caffeine, food activates the digestive system and the body is then forced to process your previous meal alongside attempting to rest.
Your mind may be unconscious, but your body is far from rested and as you attempt to wake in the morning, it will likely feel as though you haven’t had any rest at all.
And it’s because you haven’t, you just thought you were.
I do understand that fitting in a main meal is a difficult task in today’s world, and so if you find yourself consistently unable to find the time, I recommend switching around your lunch and dinner.
A heavier afternoon meal will help you feel full, and give your body plenty of time to digest, while a lighter evening meal will stop you waking up with hunger pangs, alongside putting less pressure on your body’s digestive system.
Skipping your evening meal is not recommended however, as your body needs fuel to both function and rest, in this case going without will only aggravate the issue.
Remember to Rest
With our modern lives getting progressively busier, making time for sleep can almost feel like an inconvenience. It’s important to remember, however, that daily stresses, lack of general productivity and even health issues can all be exasperated by a lack of good quality sleep. Struggling to find the will to get out of bed every morning is not simply a quirk, but a sign that your body is unable to keep up with your current lifestyle.
In this case, take the time to stop, evaluate and understand what aspects of your day can be causing problems, and more importantly, listen to your body.
Have You Considered Your Mattress?
If it's over 8 years old, it may not be too firm, or alternatively, too soft to provide you with the high quality rest you need.
Browse our mattress selection. At the end of the day, it's the end of the day and you need to be able to drift off peacefully.