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Science of Sleep: What Time Should You Go To Bed?

Posted on by Sleep Expert

When we’re children, our bedtimes are usually regulated for us. Then as soon as we become adults, we are in charge of how late we stay up. This can be detrimental for our usual sleeping pattern. If you’re struggling to know when to go to bed or how to regulate your regular sleeping pattern, we’ve got you covered. In this blog post, we will be looking at the average time that adults go to bed, what time our Sleep Experts recommend turning off the lights and how you can get your sleep schedule back on track. 

What is The Average Bedtime For An Adult?

According to our study for Sleeptember which was completed in 2019, during the working week, the average bedtime among British citizens was 10.43pm.

Whilst the recommended amount of sleep is typically between seven to eight hours, ‘long sleepers’ may need more than that to feel well-rested and ready to take on the day. They could need up to nine hours of sleep, which may mean they will go to bed earlier or sleep in later. 

Or, if the struggle of regulating your own bedtime has hit you hard and you are currently in the sleep debt phase where you are catching up on your recommended amount of shut eye, you may also find yourself going to bed earlier than usual.

In addition, to the average bedtime being 10.43pm on weekdays, according to our Sleeptember study, three out of 10 householders claim they would be more productive at work if their boss allowed them to have a brief nap during the working day.


What Time Should You Go To Bed?

What time you go to bed, when you wake up and when you should start thinking about unwinding after a long day is dependent on many things. Such as the weather, how much work you may have to get done and what your evening plans are. So, what time should you be thinking about turning off the lights and snuggling down under the covers?

For younger adults, our Sleep Experts recommend getting seven to eight hours of sleep, or even nine if you are trying to catch up. The same goes for adults aged 26 to 64 and older adults, aged 65 and over. This amount of sleep should leave you feeling calm, rested and ready to take on whatever the upcoming day has in store for you. 

For children, more sleep is commonly recommended, as they are growing and getting good quality shut eye is vital to their development process. For example, new-borns should be getting 14 to 17 hours of sleep a day, which includes their regular naps. Whereas older children, from the ages of 6 to 13, should be averaging at around 9 to 11 hours of sleep, to ensure that they are both happy and healthy. Finally, teenagers, aged 14-16, will experience many growth spurts and go through the main developmental stages. So it’s important for them to get  8 to 10 hours of sleep. 

How Do You Make A Sleep Routine?

Making a sleep routine can be a daunting task, especially if your current circadian rhythm has been interrupted and you are trying to get back to your regular pattern. 

With the nation's addiction to technology like smartphones, tablets and computers, it's no surprise that so many people find that this is one of the main reasons that falling asleep can be difficult. Your circadian rhythm is governed by what the light is doing. It’s our natural sleeping pattern which beckons our bodies to wake when the sun is up and go to sleep when the sun is down. With blue light shining in our faces before bed, this can confuse us and make us feel more awake during the evening, when we should really be winding down and going to sleep. To set up a good routine before bed, our Sleep Experts recommend shutting off your phone a few hours before bed and instead, trying picking up a book or listening to some relaxing music. 

During our study for Sleeptember, we found that nearly a third of the UK (30%) blames their lack of sleep on being too hot or too cold under their duvet. This could be because the majority (51%) say they use the same duvet throughout the seasons, not changing togs for cooler sleeping in summer or to keep warm in the winter. Ensure that your quality of sleep is the best that it can be by having a duvet which suits the weather or even having a Four-Seasons Duvet, which will see you through the entire year. 

 Shop All Four Seasons Duvets

Finally, corner off some important ‘me-time’ before going to bed. Rather than taking all the stresses of work, social time or even just general life to bed with you, try to relax before turning off the lights. By setting out a few hours before bed to really focus on unwinding, having a cup of calming tea or putting a sleep playlist on will improve your quality of sleep straight away.