Could camping in the wild cure insomnia?

Modern living is increasingly depriving people of sufficient natural light, according to researchers
Modern living is increasingly depriving people of sufficient natural light, according to researchers

Friday, 10, Mar 2017 07:57

by Tom Leaning

A recent study in Current Biology has found that a couple of nights in the great outdoors could re-set the body's internal clock.

As a result, insomniacs would be able to fall asleep more quickly, wake up brighter in the morning, and enjoy an array of other health benefits.

The reason, said researchers, is that modern living is increasingly depriving people of sufficient natural light, causing the timing of their circadian rhythm to slip.

But Cumbrian Holiday Park owner Henry Wild says that the report's suggested cure might not chime with the lifestyles of people who are more accustomed to their creature comforts:

Mr Wild said: "Camping is great fun, but unless you are a lifelong fan, it's unlikely that you will take immediately to bedrolls, sleeping bags, and possibly chilly nights.

"Tents have the drawback of letting in light which, in summer, could mean your body telling you it's time to get up rather too early in the morning.

"Dawn is also the waking time for birds, and their morning chorus might not sound quite as sweet with four hours still to go before breakfast.

"But our Hideaways provide a more practical solution as they have curtains which can be drawn, and an outer shell to baffle the song of even the loudest lark.

"Neither are you likely to wake up shivering with cold in the night - which might defeat the whole object - as Skelwith's Hideaways also have internal heating," said Henry.

But in all other respects, he says, the experience will offer exactly the same prospect of a sleeping solution as spending nights in a tent.

The park's Hideaways are sited in a forest glade which, after sundown, provides just the degree of more intents darkness suggested by the study.

Skelwith's pods even have their own loos, solving the dilemma of campers who must face a yomp to a distant toilet block if the need arises in the night.

Accommodating two people, they also feature a comfortable double bed, shower, kitchen zone, fridge, TV, and large picture windows with exterior decking.

"We have long known that falling asleep in the great outdoors is a great remedy for getting quickly off to sleep, and not waking up feeling groggy in the morning," said Henry.

"Even better, as many of our guests know, you take those benefits home with you - and can re-set your body clock any time by making a return visit.

"But, of course, there is a risk - and if anyone finds that the cure is working too well, we'll happily arrange on request a gentle morning tap on the door!" said Henry.

There is more information about the Hideaways at Skelwith Fold at www.Skelwith.com

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