Press Release Headlines

Good Night's Sleep a Key to Better Health

Proper Bedding Selection and Care Help Promote Optimal Rest

DES PLAINES, Ill., Dec. 1, 2009 — As a nation, we're becoming more aware of the health risks associated with lack of sleep. New evidence indicates it also is expensive. Lack of sleep — with its associated health problems and corresponding medical costs — is one factor draining our medical system, according to the recent report, "Sleep Disorders and Sleep Deprivation: An Unmet Public Health Problem," conducted by the Institute of Medicine.

Sleep researchers have proven that a lack of sleep can contribute to depression, aging and weight gain or heighten the risk for a variety of major illnesses including cancer, heart disease or diabetes — whereas a good night's rest can rejuvenate your body and appearance, sharpen mental acuity and improve your emotional outlook.

While multiple articles provide tips for falling asleep, such as avoiding caffeine or turning off electronic stimulation such as computers and the television, few address one of the most important, most intimate relationships that can positively affect your sleep: what you're sleeping with. Just as lack of sleep can cost you both physically and financially, the proper investment in sleep can reap real and long-term benefits to your mental and physical health.

Bob Hickman has been in the bedding industry for years, most recently as Vice President of Sales and Marketing at luxury bedding manufacturer United Feather & Down. Drawing on his years of expertise, Hickman shares the following tips to make sleep more successful.

Breathe easier. Over time, older pillows can contain dust mites, which can increase breathing problems like asthma or allergies. Either clean or replace your pillow.

Test your pillow. Fold your pillow in half. Does it spring back quickly to resume its former shape? If not, it's time for it to go. Most down alternative pillows should be replaced every year, and natural down or feather/down blends, every two to five years. This ensures performance and proper support for your head and neck. If your pillow is lumpy or flat, it's probably at the end of its lifespan.

Make it personal. The first question to consider when replacing bedding is, "What is your sleeping style?" Whether a side, back or stomach sleeper, there are products designed specifically to help you get a better night's rest. The Personal Comfort Pillow Collection made by United Feather & Down features uniquely designed pillows specially constructed for each sleeping style, to keep your neck and spine properly aligned while you sleep. Specifically:

  • Side sleepers should look for a gusseted pillow with a raised and even sleeping surface.
  • Stomach sleepers should look for a pillow with tapered ends and a gentle, sloping surface.
  • Back sleepers should look for a pillow with firm outer chambers to cradle the head and a soft center chamber.
  • Pillow stackers should look for a pillow with multiple chambers that perform like two pillows in one — meaning less waking up at night to reposition pillows.

Go natural. Natural fill offers unmatched breathability and temperature regulation. Down-alternative bedding is a close second, but cannot match the original when it comes to natural fiber's innate ability to wick away moisture and retain heat.

Think silver! Pure silver fibers, such as the ones offered in United Feather & Down's SilverFill(R) down-alternative bedding, have been proven to increase circulation and promote better health, along with resisting germs and bacteria growth for the lifetime of the product. And unlike nanotechnology with encapsulated silver, SilverFill(R) uses pure silver, declared on the product's federally regulated law tag.

Add a pad. Studies indicate an uncomfortable mattress can lead to back and shoulder stiffness or pain. A top-quality mattress pad can transform your flat mattress into a comfortable sleep surface and add years to the life of your bedding. It's a trick many hotels use to freshen up their mattresses and ensure the best possible sleep experience for their guests.

Freshen up. To help improve your skin condition, wash your pillowcase at least weekly or more frequently if you perspire heavily. Wash bed linens at least once a week and air them out daily before making your bed.

Dry that down. Down, by nature, wicks away moisture, which is what makes it so comfortable. But the moisture can build up and undermine the wicking power, so fluff your comforter in the dryer occasionally. To add loft, throw a few tennis balls into the dryer with your comforter.

Invest in quality. The economy might be bad, but a bad night's sleep makes everything worse! This is one investment where you should not skimp. Purchasing better quality product will serve you better in the long run.

CONTACT: Kelley Regan, 773-317-3550 or Email

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