University students often lead demanding and stressful lifestyles, whether it’s attending classes, working to meet coursework deadlines or even attending late-night parties – all of which can leave minimal time for rest.
For most young people embarking on university life, sleep is probably not at the top of their agenda. However, experts suggest that the current generation of university students experience greater pressure than previous age groups. And with research showing that almost 90% of students experience stress, getting quality sleep is perhaps more important than ever before.
Sleep deprivation can have a big impact on important aspects of the mind and body, such as mood, energy, memory and the ability to learn. Memory and learning are consolidated during sleep and this mostly happens during REM sleep – a phase that occurs after deep sleep.
The pressure to do well can tempt students to pull all-nighters when cramming for exams. However, this is counter-productive as with fewer hours to reach the REM phase, the brain doesn’t get enough time to absorb what they’ve studied the night before.
Fortunately, student accommodation providers are waking up to the importance of sleep, when it comes to aiding wellbeing and academic success for both the student and the university. As a result, they are investing in better quality facilities and more comfortable student rooms.
Ideally, students should have at least seven and a half hours of sleep per night in order to perform and flourish, both physically and mentally. In an effort to achieve better sleep health for students, Hypnos Contract Beds has worked with a wide range of accommodation providers on improving the standard of their beds.
One example is true Glasgow West End, a new-build property providing top-quality rooms for more than 500 students. Hypnos was selected to provide the Student Deluxe mattress which combines a single-sided pocket-sprung, no-turn construction, with natural and blended comfort layers giving the ultimate night’s sleep for the resting student. What’s more, innovative torsion side supports add much-needed strength to the perimeter of the mattress, allowing the bed to withstand regular seated use.
Another useful option for student accommodation, which can typically be tight on space, is a sturdy, practical bed base for extra storage. Less clutter is also thought to improve mental health, and products like the Hypnos FlexiBase have the added benefit of having the option of one or two open sides, which can be hidden discretely behind an aperture flap.
As the first carbon neutral bedmaker in the world, all Hypnos beds are designed to be 100% recyclable at the end of their life. And when that time comes, we’ve developed a disposal and recycling service, with raw materials reused in other industries.
The advantage for accommodation providers investing in premium quality beds is that they are built to last. Products such as the Student Deluxe are offered with Hypnos’ five-year guarantee, as well as anti-bed bug, anti-microbial and antibacterial protection. In contrast, cheaper beds offer a false economy because they often need to be replaced after a couple of years.
Another important consideration is making sure that the beds meet the latest fire safety accreditations. In the UK, a domestic bed cannot be used in a contract environment as it doesn’t adhere to the same specifications.
For example, domestic furniture must pass the BS7177 low hazard standard while furniture for the contract market must also pass the BS6807 test – or Source 5 (Crib 5) test – and proves medium resistance to ignition. Buying or maintaining a bed that isn’t compliant with commercial fire- retardant standards is not only an offence which can lead to prosecution in the event of a fire, but it also puts student lives at risk.
With student wellbeing shooting up the list of priorities for universities, sleep health and safety is an area that is coming under increased scrutiny. Accommodation providers that offer more premium comfort levels are well placed to take advantage of these trends and students will get the rest they need to help them operate at peak performance and graduate with flying colours.
Chris Ward is group marketing director at Hypnos Contract Beds