Why do we feel safe under blanket?

Views:67     Author:Site Editor     Publish Time: 2019-02-12      Origin:Site

    Each and every one of us has a favorite sleeping position—whether it’s the fetal curl, the splaying starfish, the yearner’s stretch, or the log pose—and here’s what each one says about your personality. But there’s one sleep habit we all have in common, and that’s our tendency to sleep under a blanket.

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• Fetal position: Comfort seekers

    The most common sleep style, 58 percent of those surveyed sleep on their side with their knees tucked into themselves. Phipps says that people who snooze like this seek comfort to help them de-stress from the day. They’re also very conscientious and prone to over-thinking and worrying.

• Log position: Stubborn and set in your ways

    Twenty-eight percent of respondents sleep like a log, on their side with their head, neck, arms, legs, and body in a straight vertical line. Phipps says loggers are set in their ways, can be stubborn, and come across as bossy or aloof.

• Yearner position: Challenge chasers

    One quarter of people are yearners, they sleep on their side with their arms stretched out, which could indicate either that they’re chasing their dreams or, conversely, that they’re being chased. Yearners tend to seek exciting new challenges and opportunities, but can be too hard on themselves by expecting great results too quickly.

• Freefaller position: Out of control and prone to anxiety

    The most uncomfortable and least common position, 17 percent of respondents sleep flat on their tummies with their arms stretched north toward their heads. Phipps says freefallers tend to feel their life is happening to them and they don’t have control over it. They tend to wake up feeling anxious, both about lingering issues from the day before and what’s ahead.

    Although bedding used to be a luxury reserved for the rich and powerful, such as kings and wealthy merchants, these days sleeping under a blanket is fairly universal. And even if you’re roasting in your airless room, chances are you’ll still get tucked in. What gives?

    As always, science saves the day with the answers to our deepest questions. For one, your body’s core temperature drops before and during your slumber, so you need the blanket to stop your shivers. That nightly cool down begins about an hour before you hit the hay and continues to drop while you sleep, eventually reaching one or two degrees below your average body temperature. But once you reach the rapid eye movement (REM) sleep cycle, your body loses its ability to regulate its temperature. Your blanket is around to keep you warm—even on a sweltering summer evening.

    There’s a behavioral element to sleeping with bedding, too. Truth be told, we’ve been conditioned to use blankets since birth.

  “Chances are you were raised to always have a blanket on you when you went to sleep,” Dr. Alice Hoagland, the director of the insomnia clinic at the Unity Sleep Disorder Center in Rochester, New York, told Atlas Obscura. “So that’s a version of a transitional object, in sort of Pavlovian way.”

    Previous research also suggests that sleeping with a weighted blanket can do wonders for patients with anxiety and insomnia. Why? Sleeping underneath your bedding make you feel safe and protected, which increases your brain’s serotonin levels and decreases the presence of stress hormones.

    Scientific explanations aside, blankets are just plain soft and comfy. That’s reason enough to get tucked in tonight.

    Originally Published on Reader's Digest

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