A new pillow and mattress system stimulates the body to trigger sleepy feelings by using heating and cooling sensations. Researchers say the new system helps people fall asleep faster and improves the quality of overall sleep.
Exposure to artificial light while sleeping is associated with weight gain and an increased risk of obesity in women. Compared to those who slept without artificial light, those who slept with television or light on were 17% more likely to have an 11 pound or more increase in weight.
Sleep duration can have a negative impact on memory skills and reaction time. While the effects of sleep deprivation are well documented, researchers report sleeping for longer than the recommended 7 to 8 hours per night is associated with more errors in memory recall and slower reaction times, with each additional hour of sleep impacting performance more.
An uncommon variant of the PDE11A gene impacts both quality and duration of sleep. Genetic regions linked to sleep quality are also associated with serotonin production. The study also reveals those with the same hip circumference and a higher waist circumference sleep less, although the effect is small.