According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 3 Americans are sleep-deprived. We’ve got a lot on our minds and sometimes it’s hard to wind down. But there are some things you can do to make your bedroom so comfortable it’ll be hard NOT to fall asleep.
Cool Down the Room
Experiment to find a temperature that’s perfect for you and your partner because some of us tend to feel warm all the time, while others feel cold all the time. Experts suggest keeping your room between 60 and 71 degrees Fahrenheit. Besides utilizing the thermostat, running a fan or cracking your bedroom window, when temps are cooler, is a great solution.
Control the Light
Having a dark room at night is important to reinforce a healthy circadian rhythm—our internal clocks that alert us to when it’s time to go to bed or to wake up. Light also impacts melatonin production in our bodies. It’s vital to have window treatments that help us control the light, and temperature, in the room. (If a room heats up from the sun all day, it’s hard to cool it down in time for bed.) Layered window treatments will get the job done. For instance, pairing sheer shades with blackout drapes will give you the option of pulling the drapes closed to keep out all of the light at night, or for an energy-boosting nap during the day, if you choose. On the other hand, pulling back the drapes will let in some light during the day, and full-on light when you lift the shades.
It isn’t only noisy neighbors who can disrupt your sleep. Sometimes family members watching TV in another room, or just going about their own bedtime rituals, can unintentionally create sounds that keep you from dozing off, or wake you up after you’ve fallen asleep. A white noise machine may help drown out those sounds. Many fans can produce that white noise too. There are also some great apps with white noise settings that often come with a timer to turn off the sound if you’d like, or maybe you prefer soothing music to relax you.
Relax with Aromatherapy
Essential oils are all-natural sleep aids that are extracted from plants. They’re named essential because they’re comprised of the essence of a plant. A limited number of studies have shown that some essential oils, such as lavender or sandalwood, can help you fall asleep easier, and stay asleep, because they induce relaxation.
Make Intentional Mattress and Bedding Choices
It’s very important to choose a mattress and pillows that support your neck and spine correctly to protect you from injuries down the road. The materials the mattress is made from—like memory foam, latex, coils or hybrids–will determine how firm it is, and how your body heat is dispersed. And the type and number of pillows you use will determine whether or not your neck is aligned properly. Once you’ve chosen the ideal mattress and pillows, remember to be just as intentional about choosing your sheets and blankets. Natural fabrics that are breathable are your best bet for sheets and blankets because they will allow for more air circulation, and don’t forget to swap out the heavier versions for lighter-weight materials in the summer. You know where to find me for advice on all your bedding needs, including quality inserts to fit your duvets and pillows, and sheets and quilts created to fit over-sized beds and mattresses.
You’ll find some great tips to turn your children’s bedroom into a sleep haven in my October magazine.
And speaking of children, October is window covering safety month. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), corded window coverings are one of the top five hidden hazards in American homes. Corded window coverings are a strangulation hazard as infants and young children can accidentally become entangled in the cords. A serious accident can only take seconds. Pets can get tangled too! Please check your windows for safety hazards. I only offer products that are certified Best for Kids. You’ll find more information and safety tips here.