If you struggle to sleep at night, your bedroom set up could be to blame. Good news: there’s an easy fix.
Do you want to wake up refreshed and in a good mood every morning?
Of course, you do. To achieve this goal, you need to create a sleep environment that will aid in getting good shut-eye on a nightly basis.
The good news is, it’s much easier to do than it seems.
These simple tips will help you create your own sleeping space that will boost your sleep quality!
#1 Find Your Perfect Temperature and Humidity
The climate in your bedroom has a huge impact on the quality of your sleep. It consists of two main parameters: temperature and humidity.
And you can easily regulate both to meet your demands.
The proper temperature is important because it can help your body produce melatonin. Melatonin is your sleep hormone and its levels in your blood increase when the body temperature drops a bit. That’s why the blood vessels in your skin dilate prior to sleep, to facilitate heat loss.
But if you have a higher temperature around, this process will be much slower, and as a result, you will struggle to fall asleep for a longer time, not mentioning the lower quality of sleep overall.
If your bedroom is too cool (lower than 60F), however, things won’t get better either. In this case, your feet and hands, which have a lot of blood vessels, will cool down very fast and may freeze, leading to uncomfortable sensations and disrupted sleep.
Adjust your thermostat somewhere between 60 and 67F — this is the optimal temperature range for a good snooze.
Now, what about humidity?
High humidity is pretty common during summer months and has several adverse effects on your sleep:
- It makes you sweat. If the air is humid, the sweat from your body won’t evaporate, and you will feel wet and uncomfortable.
- It can contribute to nasal congestions. This evaporation problem can result in fluid build-ups inside your nose, which will lead to congestions.
- It creates a perfect environment for pathogens. High humidity is a perfect condition for fungi and dust mites to grow. These two are the most common home allergens and can provoke hypersensitivity in some people.
During winter months humidity in homes drops, but this also comes with a couple of downsides.
First, if your bedding is synthetic, it will be more likely to generate static electricity due to dry air.
Second, dry air will cause the water to evaporate from your skin and mucous membranes much faster. This might result in headaches and sore throat, and may even lead to higher chances of catching the flu, as dried-out mucous membranes are a perfect target for germs.
So, the advice is to adjust your room humidity between 30 and 50% — this is the perfect range, according to the EPA — and regulate it throughout the year (with the help of an air conditioner, humidifier, or other devices) to maintain a perfect climate for sleeping.
#2 Get Yourself a Comfortable Mattress
Another factor that has a drastic impact on your sleep quality is your mattress. If you have been sleeping on your current one for more than 7 years, it’s probably time to replace it.
To get a good, sleep enhancing mattress, follow these tips:
- Choose the right mattress type. There are so many beds on the market today — foam, latex, hybrid beds, traditional innersprings, and fancy waterbeds — so it’s easy to get confused. That’s why you should learn about different mattress types and their comparison before shopping.
- Consider firmness. Firmness is subjective and its perception is mostly tied to your weight. Medium and medium-firm beds are a good pick for almost any average-weight sleeper, while firmer beds will better suit heavier sleepers. The position you sleep in matters too. Those who snooze on their side should look into softer models, while back and stomach sleepers will feel more comfortable on a firmer mattress.
- Don’t forget about your health issues. Obviously, if you have some back issues or chronic conditions causing pain, they should also be taken into consideration. It’s better to ask your healthcare provider for recommendations in this case.
#3 Deal With External Factors
A sleep-friendly bedroom is a bedroom without any irritants that can suddenly wake you up. In the modern world, these would be all sources of light and noise, so you have to minimize their presence in your bedroom as much as possible.
And here’s what you can do:
- Use blackout curtains or blinds. Curtains that block light from the outside are among the best things ever invented. They will save your sleep if you live in a light-polluted urban area.
- Try noise. No, it’s not a joke, you can really muffle some annoying sounds inside or outside your house with the help of another noise, also known as white noise. And the great thing is that many homes today have a ceiling fan which resembles the frequency of white noise very closely. But if you don’t have one, you can get a white noise machine or download one of those phone apps playing white noise.
- Switch off. Blue light emitted by gadgets affects your sleep no worse than outside noises. To eliminate the negative effect, avoid using your electronic devices at least an hour before bedtime.
#4 Add Some Plants
Getting a couple of home plants will not only add some life to your bedroom but also improve the quality of your sleep. See for yourself:
- Such plants as mint, lavender, eucalyptus, or jasmine are great air fresheners and can release soothing scents into the air, helping you fall asleep faster.
- Plants emit oxygen and decrease the amount of carbon dioxide through photosynthesis during the day. Thus, by the time you get into your bed, your bedroom air will be more oxygenated, which is another factor contributing to sound sleep.
- If you live in warm climates, you can get yourself such plants as citronella, floss flower, or geranium — they excel at repelling mosquitoes and other annoying small insects from your bedroom.
#5 Express Yourself
Finally, make your bedroom a reflection of your sense of style and character. This way, your brain will create positive associations with the time spent in this room, which, in turn, may promote better sleep experience.
For starters, you can change the wallpaper or paint the walls in the colors you like.
But be careful here:
Bright colors may have a stimulating effect on your brain, keeping you awake instead of aiding in falling asleep.
Also, add some personal touches, such as photographs, paintings, drapery, etc. — whatever makes you happy. This will help you turn your sleeping space into your sleep sanctuary.
Before pouring yourself another cup of coffee and resigning yourself to never sleeping well again, try some (or all!) of these tips for a better night’s rest. You need your sleep, after all!