Crowbarring ourselves out of bed in the morning is proving increasingly difficult now that sunrise takes place a lot later, and the pain is only going to intensify when the clocks go backwards next week.

However, while we can't control the weather, there are ways to lessen the pain and wake up refreshed rather than whacking the snooze button. We asked sleep expert John Bramm from Octapsring for his top tips.

Take a look:

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  • Cut Out The Caffeine

    Restricting the amount of caffeine you consume during the day not only helps you sleep better, but conversely can also help you wake up in the morning too. Many of us are victims of “having to have” a cup of coffee to help us feel alert for the day ahead, but caffeine dependence can actually inhibit its effectiveness, making you either feel groggy or encouraging you to imbibe more and more caffeine to! So try and limit how much you drink and I am sure you will see an improvement on those dark winter mornings.

  • Keep The Temperature Consistent

    The optimum temperature to both sleep, and wake up in, is around 16c – 18c. Any warmer than this can mean you can not only experience discomfort and restlessness during the night, but also see you struggling to escape the duvet in the cold winter mornings.

  • Don't Draw The Curtains

    Depending on the environment outside (if you have street lighting outside, for example, this may not be advisable), not drawing the curtains and just using a blind, can allow a small amount of natural light to seep through in the morning, and will allow you to wake up more naturally.

  • Don't Lie In

    I am sure this tip will not make me popular, but try to resist the urge for lengthy lie-ins during the weekends. Just like going to bed, waking up at a regular time helps your body get into a natural rhythm, and can stop you feeling groggy on those dreaded Monday mornings. Try it for one week, and I am sure you will see an improvement!

  • Invest In A 'Body Clock Alarm'

    It sounds obvious, but make sure you invest in a good alarm clock to help you wake up in the morning. Some of the best on the market are 'body clock' or 'dawn simulator' alarm clocks. They include light technology that gently wakes you up by simulating the sun breaking. Waking up to 'natural' light can ease you into those dark mornings, rather than being jolted aloud by a sharp, electronic noise.

  • Invest In A Good Mattress

    Getting a better night’s sleep is not only good for your health, it also helps you to wake up in the mornings. Make sure you have a supportive, body-zoned and temperature-regulating mattress, such as an Octaspring, use the correct tog duvet, and practice good ‘sleep hygiene’ in your bedroom by turning off any standby buttons and keeping the room airy.

  • Exercise Early

    Any sleep expert will tell you that exercise is vital in getting a good night sleep, but it can also help you in waking up. A small amount of exercise, even if just stretching or doing core exercises for 20 minutes, can help you wake up in the morning and ensure you feel refreshed and energized for the day ahead.

  • Try To Go To Bed At The Same Time Each Night

    Your body has a natural clock, and it’s important to try and keep it to a similar rhythm. Many of us are guilty of staying up later during the weekends, but this can wreak havoc with your body clock and is one of the reasons you find it so much harder to wake up on Monday mornings. Try and go to bed at the same point every night, if possible.

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