I’m a sleep expert – here’s how the anniversary will affect your snooze

The Queen’s platinum jubilee is in full swing – and Brits are being granted a four-day weekend.

But if you make the most of partying, you might notice that your sleep has been affected.

Big events like a four-day weekend can disrupt our normal sleep pattern, an expert has warned

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Big events like a four-day weekend can disrupt our normal sleep pattern, an expert has warnedPhoto credit: Getty

This can happen when we’re not in our usual routine, leaving us feeling tired and light-headed.

Getting enough snooze is important as it helps us feel rejuvenated.

As we all continue to attend garden parties and BBQs this weekend, one expert has said this change in pace could throw your sleep schedule off balance.

Speaking to The Sun, Theresa Schnorbach, sleep researcher at Emma – The Sleep Company, revealed the four ways the celebrations can affect you.

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1. drink day

Celebrations are often accompanied by a glass (or more) of alcohol, but the relationship between sleep and alcohol is complex, Theresa said.

She explained that alcohol is naturally a depressant and can act as a sedative, reducing the time it takes you to fall asleep.

“However, alcohol has also been found to adversely affect sleep patterns and specifically REM sleep (the phase of your sleep cycle that usually begins around 90 minutes after you fall asleep).

“This means that while you fall into a deep sleep stage easily, you get less of the earlier, more restful sleep stages.

“The imbalance this causes in the natural cycle of your sleep stages means you’re likely to wake up at night and have trouble falling asleep again.”

The guru said that the time it takes your body to sleep off alcohol can vary depending on your body and the amount consumed.

“If you drink throughout the day, I would recommend alternating between alcohol and water and stopping a few hours before bed,” she added.

2. food comas

With BBQs and cakes galore, it’s likely we’ll be indulging over the bank holiday weekend.

Theresa said this means you could potentially fall into that “food coma” we usually reserve for Christmas.

The sleep scientist said this overeating causes a spike in glucose that can make us sleepy — but actually likely leads to less restful sleep and more nocturnal awakenings.

“To combat sleep issues, avoid eating for at least 2-3 hours as this gives your body time to digest properly.

When we lack sleep, we make it harder for our brain to take in and process information and are likely to suffer from negative mood swings

Theresa Schnorbachsleep scientist

“Research suggests that a traditional Mediterranean diet rich in fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, whole grains and seeds could help send you to dreamland.

“You can also swap red meat and processed foods associated with barbecue season for omega-3-rich fish and vegetables for better sleep.

“These are less likely to cause nighttime disturbances because our bodies don’t have to work as hard to digest them all,” she said.

3. later nights

With the extra days off many Brits will be enjoying, there is a temptation to deviate from your normal sleep schedule.

But Theresa said that when we keep a regular sleep schedule, our bodies “learn” when to produce the right hormone and neurotransmitters at the right time to prepare you for rest and then keep you awake during the day.

She stressed that both your physical and mental health can be damaged by the “sleep guilt” caused by multiple late nights.

“When we lack sleep, we make it harder for our brain to take in and process information and are likely to suffer from negative mood swings.

“If you’ve had a long night and your body is craving some rest, a little power nap will do you good, but I would encourage you to stick to your normal sleep pattern as much as possible to avoid sleep deprivation,” she said.

4. Noise

It’s more than likely that many people will want to continue partying into the night, with the murmur of the celebrations potentially disturbing those looking to rest up earlier.

Theresa suggested that one way to combat this is to play white or pink noise.

She said: “The more commonly known white noise (similar to what you might associate with static noise) is produced when every frequency that the human ear can hear is reproduced with the same amplitude.

“Pink noise is similar but has deeper tones and lower waves. Pink noise has been found to help reduce brain activity, which in turn aids sleep, and both pink and white noise can help relax our brains, ready for rest and combating external noise pollution.”

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https://www.the-sun.com/health/5481402/sleep-expert-how-jubilee-impact-snooze/ I’m a sleep expert – here’s how the anniversary will affect your snooze

Sarah Y. Kim

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