A dark room, the sound of rain – and a game of cricket are most likely to send Brits to sleep, a study has found.
The poll of 2,000 adults, commissioned by bedding giant Slumberdown, revealed the top 50 things most likely to send us to the land of nod include a hot bath, the sound of your children reading to you, luxury bedding and work meetings.
A ticking clock, a long game of Monopoly and perhaps controversially, watching a Star Wars film also feature in the list.
It also emerged 87 per cent of Brits have nights where they struggle to get to sleep, with three quarters admitting they wish they got more shut-eye than they currently do.
Slumberdown’s sleep expert, Sammy Margo, said: “It’s interesting how many fun and unusual things made the list, a cat purring and a ticking clock are certainly new to me, but I can understand how these sounds could be soothing for some people.
“The thing that stood out for me was how the top three things most likely to send us Brits to sleep all revolve around the bedroom itself. A dark room, a freshly made bed and luxury bedding are all things I would recommend to help create that sleep zone which becomes your night time sanctuary.”
A dark room came top of the list of things which send us to sleep, followed by freshly made, or luxury bedding, reading a book and a large meal.
A nice cuddle came sixth, with a hot bath, a fleecy blanket, hot water bottle and the sound of the TV on in the background completing the top ten.
A long film, travelling in a car or on a train and the sound of a cat purring also featured within the top twenty.
Sport didn’t fare so well with cricket (23), golf (27), snooker (29) and Formula 1 (32) all featuring within the top 50.
Match of the Day (35), watching the horse-racing (44) and football results shows such as Final Score (45) also result in many feeling sleepy.
Worryingly for bosses though, employees could be feeling more sleepy than productive during working hours with warm offices (14), meetings (18) and Powerpoint presentations (24) on the list.
Camomile and herbal tea, Question Time, shopping channels and The Antiques Roadshow also leave Brits feeling slightly sleepy.
The study also found that while a lucky 11 per cent find it easy to fall asleep, and can sleep anywhere, more than a third finds it difficult to nod off. With the average adult getting gets less than seven hours of sleep a night – an hour off the recommended eight hours.
For half of Brits, a lack of sleep has resulted in more than just feeling tired for the day with 28 per cent saying it has led to rows with their partner, while another 20 per cent have made a mistake at work.
Others admitted tiredness led to rows with their children or work colleagues, falling asleep at work or even an accident of some kind.
Sammy Margo continued: “It is rather worrying that a third of us wish we could get more sleep then we currently do. At this time of year many of us are struggling to get a good night’s sleep because of the dark mornings and short days.
“One of the most important items that can aid a restful night’s sleep is good quality bedding, so for 2016 review your sheets, duvet, mattress and pillows for a better night’s sleep.
“There are also a range of snooze foods which contain high levels of Tryptophan which will help to promote a good night’s sleep. They include bananas which is practically a ‘sleeping pill in a peel’, turkey, almonds, oats, marmite type substances, dairy products and soya products.
“Finally try to sleep in complete darkness. Even a tiny bit of light in your room can disrupt your sleep rhythm and the release of your sleepy hormone melatonin.”
Top 50 things most likely to send you to sleep
A dark room
A freshly made bed
Reading a book
A large meal
A hot bath
A fleecy blanket
A hot water bottle
The sound of a TV show in the background
The sound of rain
Your hair/arm/back being stroked
Watching a long film
A warm office
Sitting on a train
Sitting in a car
Smell of lavender
A ticking clock
A cat purring
Political party broadcasts
A burning candle
A Star Wars film
College or university lectures
An episode of Downton Abbey
Match of the Day
A long game of Monopoly
The shipping forecast on Radio 4
The Antiques Roadshow
A Lord of the Rings film
Revising for an exam
Prime Minister’s Questions
Horse racing on the TV
Final Score/Soccer Saturday (Football results programmes)
Reading with a child/listening to a child read
Writing an essay