Many different factors play a part when it comes to getting a good night’s sleep. According to Consumer Reports, in 2015 Americans spent approximately $41 billion on sleep aids and remedies and, “more than a third of American adults are not getting enough sleep on a regular basis,” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. So if you too have issues falling asleep and staying asleep at night, rest assured (get it!?) that you are not alone. Factors from lighting and noise, to having too much caffeine late in the day, to stress and more, can create obstacles to a sound night’s sleep.
Improve your quality of sleep by taking steps to better your sleep environment, and your mindset, with these tips!
Turn Off The Lights
Exposure to light stimulates your brain and body in numerous ways which makes being subjected to light right before bed, and during sleep, a huge contributing factor to your quality, or lack thereof, of sleep. The hormone melatonin sends signals to the brain letting it know when to rest and when to be awake, and light is one of the natural factors that affects the messages that melatonin sends out. When it’s light out melatonin sends out messages of wakefulness, and when it’s dark out, messages of restfulness.
Some ways to lessen the effect of light on your sleeping pattern is to invest in blackout curtains, wear an eye mask to sleep, cover up lights from electronics (like those dreaded, blinking, blue lights!) and not use devices like your laptop, tablet or cell phone right before going to bed. The blue light that emanates from digital devices is especially detrimental when it comes to sleep.
I bet you know more than a few people who claim that they cannot fall asleep without having the television or radio on. While they’re convinced that the noise is aiding them in falling asleep at night, in reality that noise is disturbing and diminishing their sleep. Even while asleep, the brain continues to process, register and respond to sound. So even if the noise isn’t physically waking you up at night, it is still messing with your quality of sleep.
For those who really can’t kick the habit of having some noise going on in the background as they fall asleep, white noise is a great alternative. The whirring noise from a fan or space heater can do just the trick. There are also white noise generators that you can purchase which have different white noise settings to pick from.
Your Mattress Matters
The size and firmness of your mattress is very important, and individualistic, to your sleeping pattern. If your mattress is too firm, lumpy or soft for your liking, it’s time to invest in a new mattress that is more inline with your preferences. The size of your mattress matters too, you should never be hanging off of your mattress or struggling to find room while sharing a bed with your partner. While mattress shopping, be sure to try out the mattress at the store and (if possible) participate in a 30 or 60 day trial with the mattress to see if it’s the right one for you.
In addition to the mattress itself, keeping your mattress, sheets, blankets and pillowcases clean will reduce dust buildup and any allergy symptoms that may arise from the presence of dust.
Cut Out The Clutter
Clutter can create a stress and anxiety so one way to keep those reactions to a minimum is by keeping your bedroom calm, clean and organized! Need some help clearing up space and decluttering your bedroom? Outside storage might be the best route! With an on demand storage company like Zippboxx, you never have to go to a self storage facility. All of the work is done for you and you have a handy barcoded and photographed inventory of your stored items so you can quickly request a delivery of your items, or schedule another pickup, with just a few clicks. Super simple!
Keep Tabs On Temperature
Keeping your bedroom cool when it’s time to go to bed is another way to get a better night’s rest. Your body temperature drops naturally while you sleep so if the room you are sleeping in is too hot that can interrupt what’s going on naturally with your body as you fall asleep. Don’t go to extremes though. Keeping your thermostat somewhere in the mid-sixties is usually a good place to keep it for optimal sleep temperature. Remember, if you get cold, you can just pile on more blankets!