The secret to a great night's sleep

Want a great night's sleep? Move to Leicestershire...

We've launched our very own interactive map revealing the sleeping habits of the nation, including Britain's 'sleepiest counties'.

Our research with The University of Leeds found 25 per cent of Brits only slept for five hours or less per night - more than two hours less than the national recommended average of seven and a half hours. 

We have created an online search tool to highlight where in the UK the sleep debt is most prominent, and which of the UK's counties fared best and worst when it came to sleep satisfaction. 

Our results found that Leicestershire leads the way as the nation's 'sleepiest county', with residents getting on average over seven and a half hours of sleep per night, closely followed by Worcestershire with an average of seven hours. 

Top five sleepiest counties (achieving 7+ hours of sleep per night)

1. Leicestershire
2. Worcestershire
3. Edinburgh
4. Northumberland
5. Norfolk 

The research has revealed how some areas of the country are certainly faring better than others when it comes to bedding down. 

Residents in Herefordshire and East Riding of Yorkshire received less than five hours of sleep per night! 

The research also found a sizeable discrepancy between how much sleep Brits intend to have and how much we actually get. While we recognise that between seven and eight hours is what we need, we typically get nearly an hour less than intended. 

Lecturer in Psychology Dr Anna Weigall, who led the sleep research at University of Leeds, noted that the greatest sleep disruption lies in the Home Counties, and areas where long commutes are required. She argues commuter behaviour could be responsible for the tug of war between intended and actual sleep.

Our sleep expert, Dr Nerina Ramlakhan believes there are many factors, including mental health, diet and technology, which can result in Brits being unable to nod off.

She said: "There are many factors that can prevent us from being happy sleepers but there's plenty of simple things we can try to help get a more enjoyable night's sleep. 

"My top tips would be to manage your work-life balance and set a time when you stop thinking and talking about work, to go 'tech free' for at least 90 minutes before bed time, and to make sure sugary snacks and heavy meals are avoided before bed".

How does your bedtime compare? Find out using Silentnight's interactive sleep map and get more tips from sleep expert Dr Nerina on how to get a great night's sleep -www.silentnight.co.uk/sleep-matters/interactive-map/

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