6 Steps to Building Your Sleep Sanctuary
Prevention & Treatment After commuting and office chaos, it’s great to come home and relax. But does your bedroom invite in sleep or is it just another stop in your busy day?
Find an oasis of peace with these six tips that will help you turn your bedroom into a sleep sanctuary:
1. Ban technology
Many people watch television in the bedroom. But TV actually stimulates the mind rather than settling it down. Even the most relaxing show interferes with your body clock because of the flickering lights. The same is true for a computer screen or cellphone. So don't bring your laptop to bed with you. If you associate your bed with work, it will be harder to wind down at night. Reserve your bed for sleep and sex only.
2. Dark and cool
Darkness triggers the body to produce melatonin, which helps you sleep. Too much light in the bedroom confuses your body clock. Hang heavy curtains to block out light or use a sleep mask. The temperature in the room also affects how well you sleep. Most people sleep best in a slightly cool room.
3. Comfort first
Like Goldilocks, you want your bed to be “just right.” If you share a bed with someone, make sure you both have enough space. A queen- or king-size bed is best. If you wake up with back pain or you’re tossing and turning at night, check your bed for signs of wear, like lumps or sags. If you’ve had your mattress for five years or more, it might be time to get a new one.
4. Luxurious linens
Your bed linens and pajamas should be soft and comfortable, as well. Choose breathable natural fabrics, such as 100-percent cotton.
5. Quiet, please
Sleep studies show that we get a more restful night’s sleep when we are not distracted by sounds. If you can’t avoid or eliminate noise from dogs, neighbors or traffic, try masking it with white noise or soothing music. Earplugs also can help.
Fragrance can help to quiet the mind and invite sleep. Essential oils in lavender, chamomile or sandalwood are particularly relaxing. Just a drop on your pillowcase will help you drift off into slumber.
When you create a sleep sanctuary, you look forward to going to bed knowing that you will get a great night’s sleep.