New Product Lines now available. Overstock Pillow Sale! An interview with our own Terri Treat and a party invite.

New Products and Products Line
This is the most exciting time to come in to Cotton Cloud. We have an
abundance of amazing new products such as upholstered headboardsoutlet tableupholstered headboards
in contemporary, modern and transitional designs. Covered in the most luxurious fabrics these beautiful bed frames are the right amount of style to elevate the sophistication of even the most simply designed bedroom. Next to the bed, place one of our new outlet tables; available in 3 colors pecan, cherry and java. The
nightstand has both outlets and USB
ports which inside of outlet tablehides all the wires inside the table for a clean look. Plug a lamp and your phone in without worrying about tripping over the cords or having enough outlets to plug in your devices. Limited stock available so hurry in to take a look.

Dalyn RugsAlso, new to the store is Dalyn Rugs. These extremely affordable, quality rugs are an incredible value that beat the prices of rugs at that big blue and yellow store that we all know and love. Choose from machine woven, hand tufted, printed or customize your own rug. The colors are vibrant and the patterns range from traditional to modern to contemporary. We have samples to feel of the wool and jute rugs in the store.

One thing you are definitely going to want to try out are our adjustable bases! Lay adjustable basedown and elevate your head, feet or try the massage feature; all operate by a hand held remote. The adjustability of the head and foot will help with acid reflux, back pain, blood circulation and breathing. There are 3 models of beds, each one better then the last. The adjustable base will fit into nearly every bed frame with the frame acting as a fence around the base. Futons and latex are ideal for these types of adjustable bases as they are very malleable to the movements.

Another new option we have is the twin lounger designed with kids or students in mind. A great packageloungere that includes a metal frame with a thick cotton and foam mattress and 2 large pillows for only $515. It is a twin size bed or put one or both of the sides up to easily turn it into a sofa or a lounger. You can choose from over 20 different fabric samples to personalize the look.

Last but not least are all the new accessories we have placed around the store. accessoriesArtistic accent bowls, fun ceramic birds, Buddha statues and more to add the finishing touch to your room. We now have beautiful hanging mirrors and even handmade sea grass baskets. Many of the accessories are one of a kind hand picked by our managers. Come find what you need for your home in our showroom!
Buy One, Get One Half Off Pillow Sale!

We have an overstock of our beloved Latex Cloud Pillows and this means savings for YOU! We hanpillowsdcraft these versatile sleeping style pillows in a natural cotton shell and fill them with the perfect amount of chopped latex. They provide support for your neck and head while still being mold able. These fantastic pillows are buy one get one half off!! Hurry in, offer only good while supplies last!

Terri Treat Interview

With March being Woman’s History month, we decided to shine the light on the owner of Cotton Cloud, Terri Treat and learn how she grew such a successful Eco-friendly business. Cotton Cloud Natural Beds and Furniture focuses on sustainable, non toxic products and materials.  We sat down to discuss what it’s like being a female business owner and advice for aspiring entrepreneurs.

When asked about her experience as a female business owner, she laughed and simply stated, “It’s a mans world.” She said she feels blessed to be living in this country since in some other places women have fewer rights and may not even be able to Terri Treatown a business. Terri feels empowered, respected, a part of the community. She received her PHD from the school of hard knocks and believes that has helped her stay in business and be successful. By honing her own business skills, Terri was able to build her business based off of her personal principles instead of guidelines they teach in school. She knows that she could have made more money faster if she had joined the corporate world. However, by being a natural giver and bringing compassion into her everyday business practice that energy has brought prosperity and growth to Cotton Cloud.

Terri’s advice for small business owners is to first find your passion and put your energy into it. “Visualize where you’d like to be, so you have a clear idea of who you want to be.   Past failures do not predict future ones. If you have an amazing product, get it out into the world.” Terri is a strong advocate for self-care.  As a business owner, you will find most of your time is taken up by running the business and training the employees. To not burn out; Terri says to be responsible to yourself first. “I keep strict working hours, 6am -4pm. I go to yoga and eat to feel well. No matter my schedule I donate 3 hours to myself daily.” The most important aspect to growing a successful business is to have a product or service that you are behind 1000 percent. “Learn and grow through experience,” she says; trust your instincts and create a business model that works for you and your core desires.
Portland Michfest Party at Cotton Cloud! A Slice of MichiganThe party goddesses are at it again! Join us on Saturday April 18th from 8pm-12 for a fundraiser party for the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival. All proceeds support sending more women to the festival in Michigan during its 40th Annual celebration this August 4th -9th. A sliding scale of $5-$20 will get you in for hours of dancing, live music, food, drinks, tarot readings and haircuts! Join in the raffles to win a ticket to the Michigan Festival. Pay at the door or RSVP and get your ticket online at http://bit.ly/michfestportlandrsvp1 . Learn about the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival at www.michfest.com.

music festival
A Slice of Michigan

Date: Saturday April 18th

Time: 8pm-12am

                                                Location: 701 NE Broadway Portland Or 97232

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For November we have a photo contest of Cotton Cloud in your homes, big savings on inventory and floor models, how to get the best nights sleep, the details of our food drive, and our newest staff feature: Judy!

Cotton Cloud Photo Contest

We’ve been welcomed into so many homes over the years, and we’d love to see what you’ve made of our beds, couches, pillows, dressers, and so much more!

Cozy Cotton Cloud CatEnter to win our photo contest! Post a photo of any item you’ve purchased from Cotton Cloud to our Facebook page  with #cottoncloud by November 15th and show us some love!! Categories include: Most creative, Funniest, and Best photo including a child or pet (or stuffed animal).

Prizes:

1st Place = $100 gift certificate to Cotton Cloud
2nd Place = $50 gift certificate to Cotton Cloud
3rd Place = $25 gift certificate to Cotton Cloud

One photo entry per family please. We will contact the winners and re-post the winning photos via a Facebook announcement on November 17th, 2014.  Good luck!

Huge Holiday Inventory Closeout Sale!
Fall cleaning for us means big savings for you!

We are clearing out our 2014 inventory to get ready for the next year. All futon mattresses in stock, and floor models on the showroom floor, are 10% off! Come in and find a great price on a great piece for your new year.

                  The Importance of Your Sleep Position

How you sleep is as much a factor as what you sleep on, and we can help you with both!

Crawling into bed should bSleeping Positionse a calm, soothing routine that relaxes you before you drift off to sleep. Slipping under the covers and into your favorite sleeping position without a thought. However, for many getting into bed means pain, frustration and restlessness. One should awaken refreshed and energized for the new day not sore, stiff and drowsy. Three common culprits are an out of shape mattress, poor pillow or improper use, and sleep position. Changing one or all three of these things can greatly improve your nights rest. The most common cause of pain and stiffness during sleep is improper sleep position. It is important to keep your spine in alignment and support the natural curves of the spine throughout the night.

The first step to releasing pain from sleeping is to decide if it is your mattress or your sleeping position that is the culprit. If your mattress is worn out or sags in any area then it is time to find a replacement. Pay attention to how your body feels on your bed. Is your lower back supported or does it curve into the mattress? Do you feel any pain, discomfort or tingling in any area of your body? It is important to know what your mattress lacks so that you know where to start in getting a new one. Lay down on a few mattresses and pay attention to how your body reacts to laying in your sleeping position. Does your body feel supported? Do you naturally relax after a few minutes of laying quietly? These are qualities to look for when mattress shopping.

Pillows are an easy way to improve the quality of sleep. Most of us hold on to pillows for far too many years. Pillows should be replaced every 2 years. No matter what position you sleep in theStack of comfy pillows pillow you use needs to support the natural curve of your neck. Generally, a flat pillow is best for back sleepers and stomach sleepers, though stomach sleepers may be more comfortable without a pillow. Side sleepers should look for a pillow that has some loft to it and that allows the neck to stay aligned with the spine by supporting the curve between the shoulders and head.

Pillows are also a great way to keep your spine in alignment while sleeping in your favorite position. For back sleepers placing a pillow under the legs or under the curve of the lower spine will support the natural curve of your spine. Back sleeping is a good way to alleviate back pain. Some issues that occur with back sleeping are snoring and sleep apnea.

Another way to use pillows to aid in sleep posture is for side sleepers to place a pillow between the knees. This keeps the top leg and hip in alignment with the spine. It also helps keep the top leg from sliding forward which can cause the spine to twist at the waist. Side sleepers also should choose a mattress that is medium firm. While on your side the mattress should contour to the curve and weight of your shoulder and hip. If your mattress is too firm you may be waking up in pain or with a tingling sensation in your arms or legs. Although, stomach sleeping is not recommended for proper alignment, if you do prefer to sleep like this it is suggested to place a thin pillow under your hips. This keeps your spine from curving down into the mattress. Sleeping on your stomach can cause you to turn your head to the right or left in order to breathe causing neck and shoulder discomfort.

All in all, your position can also be the difference between a good sleep and a bad sleep. Remember to experiment with the positions for a little longer than one night. Sometimes we get used to sleeping one way for so long that it takes a bit of adjusting to make a new one work.

Cotton Cloud Food Drive

“My SNAP was cut by $11 this month, and that might not sound like very much, but to me it’s the difference between eating the last five days of the month or not. It’s a big amount to me.”- Delinda (Tillamook)

Foods to donate to our food drive

Cotton Cloud is holding its second food drive from November 1st – December 21st. We are happy to bring our fun little futon loving family together to give to our whole community. Hunger affects 1 in 5 families and for the third year in a row Oregon Food Bank has distributed more than one million emergency food boxes throughout Oregon and Clark County Washington. The struggle is real and it is growing.

“Unfortunately, requests for emergency food stubbornly continue to climb. Unemployment isn’t the only driver of this unprecedented need. Underemployment and limited benefits have forced people with jobs to seek emergency food. And the high cost of food, gas, utilities and rent makes it even more difficult for families to cover basic expenses.” said Janeen Wadsworth, interim CEO of Oregon Food Bank. Our neighbors, classmates, co-workers, our town, and our country is in need of food security.

In Oregon alone over 270,000 people eat from emergency food boxes per month. 92,000 of those are children. Oregon has the worst rate of child food insecurity in the nation. Our children are worrying about where their next meal is coming from. No one should go hungry especially children. “I don’t worry so much about me not eating. My kids have to come first. We’ll eat a piece of bread with mayonnaise because my kids ate all the dinner. Or the kids just get mayonnaise sandwiches for dinner, because that’s all I have.” Beth (St. Helens) It is an epidemic that will only get worse with our countries continued long term unemployment. Please, help us in giving back to our community and feeding our neighborhoods. Bring in 5 or more food items or a $10 donation and receive a free wool 12 x 20 toddler pillow (a $35 value) between November 1st and December 21st. All donations will go to the Oregon Food Bank to be distributed throughout Oregon and Clark County Washington. Together we can help fight hunger.

Employee Feature: Judy Navaroli

photo of JudyI’m an east coast native from North Carolina. I relocated to Portland 4 years ago with my husband Jay. I enjoy all Portland has to offer but most of all the people. I moved to Portland because I wanted to thrive around like minded people, who are eco-friendly, helpful and eccentric. I like watching movies, cooking and creating wall art out of junk. I’m a junky for junk. I should be, I like to restore and reuse. A teaching from my mother and grand mother.

My second passion is cooking. Due to health issues I turned to a plant based diet and soon found that you are truly what you eat. I also wrote my first cookbook Red Neck Vegan in North Carolina and I’m excited about the release of Red Neck Vegan volume II.

I’ve been in furniture and home décor sales for over 15 years and find helping people gives me great joy. I’m very excited to be a part of Cotton Cloud. I look forward to educating customers on safe and reusable products for themselves and their families. Creating a safe haven for their home while reusing and recycling products instead of filling land fields.

Special codes and discounts

We at Cotton Cloud value our relationships with our customers. Which is why we like to offer discounts to those that value us back. Show your support by liking us on Facebook or following us on twitter and watch for discount codes that are only available on social media.

Also did you know that our sister companies Natural Felt and Sleepy Sheep Organics are on Etsy? Follow us on Etsy and we’ll return the favor. Let’s spread the love for natural and organic bedding!

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Local Love.

Imagine your local economy is like a swimming pool with all the wealth of the area swimming around.
It swims from person to business to person in circular waves.

A person buys a new mattress from a local manufacturer and the local manufacturer hires employees. The employees buy groceries from a local farmer. The farmer also ranches sheep and the local mattress manufacturer buys the wool. The money circulates around and around in the pool.

But, there is a hole in the pool that the money seeps through anytime someone in the community purchases goods that are made out of the state or country or uses a bank based in another state or even pays income taxes.

How do we preserve our local economy and keep the pool full? Local manufacturing is key to a strong economy, but 90 percent of manufacturers are small and midsize companies that seldom have the resources to compete in a global economy. As a country, helping manufacturing thrive is one of the best investments we can make in our economy.
With so many companies outsourcing you may wonder what you can do to help. The solution is simple; shop at your local small businesses that manufacture their own goods and avoid the large box stores, chain restaurants and shopping with the large online retailers. Avoid the temptation of online retailers. They may be cheaper since they generally don’t have the overhead of a brick and mortar store, but you may not receive the personalized customer service or be able to try out the product before buying. It’s important to remember that “overhead” equals the paying of rent, utilities and employee wages… which all contribute directly to the local economy. Not only will shopping locally help the economy and employ our friends and family, it is the most sustainable way to shop since there is little to no fuel expense necessary to ship the goods.
As a natural mattress manufacturer, we have the competitive advantage of being a leading innovator. We can customize a mattress to your specifications and have the freedom to create a unique product and use feedback to improve existing products. We know exactly how the natural fibers that are used in our mattresses are processed and can ensure no chemicals are added. Because we purchase our raw materials and sell them directly from the factory, we can not only use much higher quality materials but we can sell the mattresses at a much lower price making our customers happy while building a strong economy.

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Wool Toppers Made Fresh Daily.

wool topper

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Check out this video from Greenington Bamboo Furniture to see how some of the beautiful platform bed frames and dressers we carry are manufactured.

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For September we have big savings in our back to school red tag sale, Bunkie bedding for making bunk beds neat and simple, new buckwheat and millet hull pillows for relieving headaches and neck pain, our new tri-fold and stowaway frames, and our staff feature: Andrew!

Back to School Red Tag Sale!

It’s the beginning of a new school year and at Cotton Cloud that means fantastic Back To School Sales!! Come join us now through the end of September for our red tag back to school sale.
Back to School Sale
Select mattresses, floor model bed and couch frames, pillows, comforters and toppers are all marked down 20 – 40%. Come check out dressers, chests, nightstands, armoires and more solutions for your storage needs! We even have our adorable and whimsical Katzpajamas totes on sale. They are perfect for carrying your books, laptop, art supplies or groceries! Also included in the sale are surprise accessories spread throughout the showroom. Everything from lamps, planters, vases and more! The only way to discover them is to come take a look around.
 

Bunkies for Bunk Beds!

Having trouble getting your child to go to bed and stay there? No luck training them to make their bed each morning?

Ever wish you had a magical way of making the bunk bed without climbing on the top or bumping your head on the bottom? Well, we have just the solution for you! BUNKIES!

What is a bunkie you ask? A bunkie is like a sleeping bag for twin and full size beds. Imagine a fitted sheet with a comforter that is attached to one side and zippers that open on the other side. There are straps that buckle under the mattress to hold the bunkie in place. No more waking up to find the blanket kicked to the floor and feet tangled around in the sheets. This amazing yet simple feature helps keep the bed looking neat and tidy!

The bunkie opens at the head and the foot for complete versatility and ease. New bedding has a way of creating excitement for kids about going to bed. With over 70 different machine washable fabrics to choose from you are bound to find the perfect design for your home, cabin or beach house.

 

Buckwheat Hull & Millet Hull Pillow

Neck pain, headaches…NO MORE!!!

image of millet and buckwheat hullsWe recently stated carrying buckwheat and millet hull pillows which offer many great benefits. They are  recommended by chiropractors to relieve neck pain and head aches because the hulls provide a firm, breathable support that reduces strain on the neck and back. You will notice the buckwheat hulls adjusting to your body’s contours, then locking into place. This support keeps the spine in alignment. You can also remove or add filling to personalize the pillow to your specific need. Buckwheat pillows are great for side and back sleepers.

Your buckwheat pillow comes in an organic cotton fabric that is removable for washing. Just store your hulls in another bag, as the hulls should not get wet. The buckwheat hulls themselves are nearly free of any particles. The are grown without any fertilizers or pesticides and are hypoallergenic and Eco-friendly. Anyone using this pillow can rest assured knowing they are having an ergonomically correct sleep on a USA made chemical free pillow! Check out this testimonial from the store manager, Rain Rezendes below.

“We had some customer inquiries about buckwheat hull pillows which piqued my curiosity. I did some research and introduced them into the store fairly recently. After about 6 months of neck pain on my left side I wondered if there was a connection between my pattern of sleeping primarily on that side and having limited neck rotation and pain so I decided to give one of these pillows a try. I was a little concerned that the sound of the buckwheat hulls might not be conducive to sleep, but was pleasantly surprised that it was not bothersome at all. Sleeping on this pillow felt like it was meant to be, the hulls adjusted and fit perfectly between my shoulder and neck. It’s only been a couple of weeks but I can already feel the pain in my neck subsiding. I love this pillow for being Eco-friendly and for remaining comfortable and cool all night. The only thing I regret is not trying one sooner!”

USA Made Tri Fold Futon and Folding Stowaway Frames

Back by popular demand are the simple tri fold futon frames!

image of a tri fold frameOur new vendor, KD Frames (located in Athens, Georgia) uses only locally sourced poplar wood. Each frame is made using kiln dried tulip poplar grown in the southern Appalachian mountains and is completely unfinished and non-toxic. These simple, affordable frames provide long lasting, high quality furniture for years to come. The lounger is available in Twin ($165), Full ($175) and Queen ($195) sizes. It has four adjustable back positions and the lounger  folds under to create a chair.
 

image of a stowaway frameAlso available are the folding stowaway frames which are perfect for guests. Simple, low to the ground and the perfect solution for keeping your futon off the floor and saving space. This frame literally folds in half and can be easily stored underneath another bed frame. When folded the twin size dimensions are 8”x39”. Stop by our showroom to see one in action as well as other matching accessories including T.V., end, coffee, and bedside tables. Cotton Cloud Natural Beds & Furniture is the only retailer selling these loungers in the state!
 

Employee Feature: Andrew Izzett

photo of andrewThe name is Andrew, and I feel more than amazing knowing I am working for a fantastic company that fancies on helping out the community and overall well-being for everyone in terms of one of the most important factors in everyday life… sleep. Rather than thinking about sleep, the greatest factor for me is what am I sleeping on? So many things I did not know and I have never been so happy being a part of educating clients and learning more for myself about the health benefits of being Eco-savvy minded when shopping for your bed mattress or a futon! Especially being diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes a couple years ago, I have been more natural minded than I was years ago and it is quite the eye opener!

Usually you can find me watching A LOT of movies or researching upcoming movies, it is my guilty pleasure! From horror to comic book movies even foreign films, I watch it all. I thoroughly enjoy cooking and learned a lot from working for a local business like this one for 8 years in Oregon City called Pioneer Pizza. From what I did there, I do want expand and further my education in the culinary industry and ultimately run a restaurant or if the moons align… open up a restaurant with the hopes of influencing a menu which would accommodate for diabetics like myself and reach out to local farmers and such to help maintain a healthy & local economy.

 

Special codes and discounts

We at Cotton Cloud value our relationships with our customers. Which is why we like to offer discounts to those that value us back. Show your support by liking us on Facebook or following us on twitter and watch for discount codes that are only available on social media.

Also did you know that our sister companies Natural Felt and Sleepy Sheep Organics are on Etsy? Follow us on Etsy and we’ll return the favor. Let’s spread the love for natural and organic bedding!
 

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For July we have info on our Eco-valley wool, decorative fabrics, and info on the effects of sleep deprivation.


Pacific Northwest Eco- Valley Wool

The process and benefits.

Happy sheep in Eco-valleyCotton Cloud provides you with a multitude of wool products. We offer pillows, toppers, beds and duvets all made with our luxurious wool. As you know Cotton Cloud is dedicated to bringing you natural, chemical free, and sustainable products to your home. Wool is one of those amazing natural products that even technology can not duplicate. Scientists have been trying for years to produce a synthetic fiber that has the benefits of wool. As of today they have yet to succeed. Wool has some amazing benefits. It is hypoallergenic and a natural flame retardant and will extinguish itself if it catches on fire. For those of you who sleep warm, wool is also a great temperature regulator. By pulling moisture away from the body allowing it to evaporate you are guaranteed a sweat free sleep. Other benefits of wool are that it is supporting and comforting with studies coming out of Europe that show people who sleep with wool have a lower heart rate which indicates a deep, restful sleep. It is also naturally renewable and absorbs air pollutants without re-emitting them.

Our wool comes from a variety of sheep farms in the Willamette Valley. We blend wool from different of sheep breeds to create premium wool batting. You can rest easy knowing that our wool comes from happy, healthy sheep, raised on sustainably managed farms. The farms use proper rotation of grazing fields to reduce the risk of sheep getting internal parasites and flocks are guarded from predators with trained sheep dogs as opposed to trapping and shooting them. We test the wool to make sure no herbicides or pesticides are used in the grazing fields and to check that the sheep are raised with alternative veterinary practices to minimize their exposure to chemicals. A mild, non-toxic detergent is used for the scouring (cleaning) of the wool which leaves no detectable residue and is biodegradable. This creates some of the finest and resilient wool available. Raw wool is sent to the University of Mass-Lowell that compares our wool to competitor’s for strength, resilience, flammability and endurance. Cotton Cloud’s wool will last twice as long as other mattresses before compressing.

Style Through and Through

Duvets, sheets and curtains…oh my!

Cotton Cloud Natural Beds & Furniture has expanded our fabric display to showcase some of the comforter sets that are available. Most people know that we carry a very large selection of futon covers but did you know that all of our fabrics can be made into duvet covers, poly filled comforters, bed sets, pillow shams, window treatments, shower curtains, bed skirts, coverlets, etc.? Some duvets can even be flipped over for a fresh yet coordinated look.

Photo of curtainsWindow treatments are available with grommet panels, roman shades, tab or tie tops and rod pocket style. With so many options make sure to ask a salesperson to help you with the details. We are now also carrying a variety of sheet sets made with 100% cotton, Organic Cotton or Bamboo. These luxuriously soft sheets will make getting into bed each night a cherished experience and getting out of bed each morning an accomplishment worth celebrating!

The Effects of Sleep Loss
The serious business of getting enough rest.

Think one night of sleep loss doesn’t affect you? Think again! Many people assume it isn’t a big deal to lose one night of rest, but the effect sleep deprivation can have on your mind and body are actually quite surprising. When days turn into weeks of continuous sleep deprivation, the results can even be devastating. The myriad effects of sleep loss on everything from weight to memory means getting rest is one of the most important things we do every day.

Healthy adults usually require 7-9 hours of sleep per night, but recent prominent surveys have shown that a significant proportion of Americans are getting much less. Sleep is as integral to our health as nutrition and exercise, yet many people are overwhelmed with hectic schedules and trim their hours of rest to accommodate the demands of family, work, and social activities.

Cognition

Cognitive performance, including complex decision-making skills, innovative thinking, basic math and reaction times are critically affected by sleep loss. The speed, accuracy, and the ability to multitask may also be impaired. Sleep deprivation also slows communications between the frontal lobes of the brain, which affects your attention span, particularly in acoustic and verbal information, referred to as echo memory, and for visuospatial information, referred to as iconic memory. During the night, various sleep cycles play a role in “consolidating” memories in the mind. In 2009, American and French researchers determined that brain events called “sharp wave ripples” are responsible for consolidating memory. The ripples also transfer learned information from the hippocampus to the neocortex of the brain, where long-term memories are stored. Sharp wave ripples occur mostly during the deepest levels of sleep, thus, reduced sleep = reduced sharp wave ripples = reduced memory consolidation, facial recognition, and work performance efficiency.

Mood & Emotion

Moms often put kids down for naps when they get cranky, and one study indicated that our moods can indeed be affected by a lack of sleep. When deprived of rest, areas of the brain associated with depression and emotional reactivity become more active. Tired people are more likely to overreact to negative experiences and may have less ability to regulate emotions as the prefrontal cortex is hampered. Given that a single sleepless night can cause people to be irritable and moody the following day, it is conceivable that chronic insufficient sleep may lead to long-term mood disorders. Chronic sleep issues have been correlated with depression, anxiety, and mental distress. Sleep specialists also say that sleep-deprived men and women report lower libidos and less interest in sex. Depleted energy, sleepiness, and increased tension may be largely to blame. All of these self-reported symptoms improved dramatically when subjects returned to a normal sleep schedule.

Driving Is More Dangerous

Driving is negatively affected by sleep loss as your ability to concentrate, analyze and react are diminished. Drowsy driving is a major problem in the U.S. In a National Sleep Foundation survey, 60% of drivers admitted to driving drowsy and 37% admitted to falling asleep at the wheel in the past year. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration attributes 100,000 accidents, 40,000 injuries and 1550 deaths to drowsy driving, and AAA attributes 17% of all deadly crashes to fatigue.

Immune Function & Health Problems

It is natural for people to go to bed when they are sick. Substances produced by the immune system to help fight infection also cause fatigue. One theory proposes that the immune system evolved “sleepiness inducing factors” because inactivity and sleep provided an advantage: those who slept more when faced with an infection were better able to fight that infection than those who slept less. In fact, research in animals suggests that those animals who obtain more deep sleep following experimental challenge by microbial infection have a better chance of survival.

In the long term, the clinical consequences of untreated sleep disorders are large indeed. They are associated with numerous, serious medical illnesses, including:

  • Diabetes
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Heart attack
  • Heart Disease
  • Heart Failure
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Stroke
  • Obesity
  • Psychiatric problems, including depression and other mood disorders
  • Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
  • Mental impairment
  • Fetal and childhood growth retardation
  • Injury from accidents
  • Disruption of bed partner’s sleep quality

Sleeping Better

Recognizing the impact that even a single night of sleep loss can have on your life highlights the importance of adequate rest. Between work, fun and responsibilities, it can be difficult to prioritize sleep, yet not doing so can wreak havoc in all aspects of your life, straining relationships with family, reducing productivity at work, causing disease, and even shortening your lifespan. When you are rested, you look better to others, you physically feel better and your mind is sharper.

So, if you’re trying to decide between an extra hour of shuteye or continuing a Netflix marathon, choose sleep. Remember, even one night of sleep loss can have a big effect on your body, your looks, your mental state, and even your safety, especially when it becomes a habit.

What to Do:

Power Down An Hour Before Bed

Nearly all Americans — as many as 95 percent, in fact — use some tech gadget in the hour before bed at least a couple of nights a week, according to the National Sleep Foundation’s 2011 Sleep in America poll. But the blue light emitted from TV, laptop, tablet and smart phone screens disrupts the brain’s natural melatonin production and can trigger alertness, keeping you awake later.

Experts recommend going screen-free about an hour before bedtime and picking a less disruptive way to unwind during that time instead. Why not try a warm bath, a good book or some nighttime yoga?

Commit to at least 7 Hours

It’s true that there’s no magic number of hours of sleep that every adult must get, but in general, most people require 7 to 9 hours to feel and function their best. Risk for a number of the serious consequences of short sleep, like heart problems and obesity, increases dramatically when people get fewer than six hours at night.

Calculate seven hours back from the time you need to wake up, then hit the hay as close to that time as possible. Take into consideration how long it takes you to fall asleep and whether or not you wake up frequently throughout the night.

Consider What and When you eat and Drink

If you rely too heavily on that 4:30 p.m. cup of coffee or that glass of wine before bed, consider committing to healthier eating and drinking habits for sleep in the coming year.

Experts recommend ditching caffeine six to eight hours before bed to make sure it’s out of your system by lights out time. Alcohol, while it can help lull you to sleep, is only disruptive later on in the night. It’s also a good idea to steer clear of fatty foods too close to bedtime, since they can lead to fewer hours of sleep, and sleep-disrupting issues like indigestion and acid reflux.

Sleep on a Comfortable Mattress

It’s not just a catchy phrase; research now shows that getting deep, restorative sleep on a comfortable, supportive mattress can better enable you to wake up each day physically, intellectually and emotionally renewed. In this improved state we are more efficient, productive and better equipped to relate and interact with our family and others.

Every month, the average person spends 10 days sleeping on a mattress. We all understand that daily vitamins, exercise, and healthy meal choices all have a cumulative beneficial effect over time. The positive effects of sleep over time may have even more dramatic effects on our health and appearance.

If you feel like you are not getting the most restful night’s sleep, then stop by Cotton Cloud and talk to one of our friendly sales associates. With their knowledge, they can help you find the perfect sleeping solution, whether it be a new mattress, pillow, comforter or mattress topper.

 

Special codes and discounts

We at Cotton Cloud value our relationships with our customers. Which is why we like to offer discounts to those that value us back. Show your support by liking us on Facebook or following us on twitter and watch for discount codes that are only available on social media.

Also did you know that our sister companies Natural Felt and Sleepy Sheep Organics are on Etsy? Follow us on Etsy and we’ll return the favor. Let’s spread the love for natural and organic bedding!

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