How to Get Better Sleep by Redoing Your Bedroom
In the great pursuit of better sleep, one major component is often overlooked or simply ignored: your bedroom.
When you research ways to sleep better, you’ll often find plenty of great advice. Here are just some of the better sleep articles we love:
- How to regulate your sleep schedule
- Watch when and what you eat before bed
- Effects of caffeine and alcohol on your sleep patterns
- Best positions in which to sleep
- How to pick a mattress
There’s certainly no shortage of studies and opinions on how to sleep, and why sleep matters.
All too often, however, our bedroom becomes a haphazard afterthought — an extra storage space, an extension of the laundry room, that out-of-sight-out-of-mind place in which clutter accumulates.
Our brains and bodies are hardwired to respond to our environment, especially when it comes to sleep. When you think about it, it makes sense that you might struggle to relax and unwind in a room that stresses you out.
Often the last to be decorated, cleaned, or even considered, the bedroom can become one more nuisance or stress when it should be your Fortress of Solitude…or should I say Slumbertude?
How to Design Your Bedroom for Better Sleep
You’re busy, and your bedroom is often overlooked for that very reason. To help make things easier, we’ve compiled eight ways to design your bedroom into the relaxing sleep sanctuary it ought to be.
Keep the Temperature Cool
A cool room sends your body signals that night has fallen and it’s time to wind down. Research suggests the ideal temperature for your room is between 60º and 67º Fahrenheit. This can be aided by a hot shower or bath a couple hours before bed. Health.com explains, “When you soak in a hot tub, your temperature rises, and the rapid cool-down period immediately afterward relaxes you.”
Reduce the Noise to a Dull Roar
Noise is a big factor when you try to sleep, whether it’s waking you up or keeping you from falling asleep. It’s not so much the noise itself as it is the inconsistency of outside sounds like dogs barking, cars passing, etc. Luckily our brain automatically filters out most noise it doesn’t interpret as a threat while we sleep.
For what it doesn’t filter, AlaskaSleep.com recommends you fill the space with low, soothing sounds, such as white noise or a fan, to control the noise immediately surrounding you. This helps drown out other sounds that might keep you up.
Clear the Clutter
Your mind tends to reflect your environment, so it goes to follow that an organized room is an organized mind. If this goes against your natural being, start small. Try simply making your bed every morning. Once that becomes a habit, move on to something else, such as folding laundry. Before you know it you’ll have a room even your mother would admire.
Opt for Warm, Dimmable Lights
Lighting is one of the most important aspects in your bedtime routine. Since your brain reads the light to decide what time it is — and therefore what mode to go into — the right lighting will go a long way toward getting you ready for deep, revitalizing sleep.
Bright white- and blue-tinted lights tell your brain it’s daytime, and is therefore time to work. Low, warm lights, on the other hand, send signals that it’s time to get ready to hit the hay.
Replace the stark bright bulbs with warm, preferably dimmable lights (a dimming switch is simple to install), or you can forego the main lights altogether a couple hours before bed and use lamps to light your evening routine.
And of course, once you’re actually ready to zonk out, keep the room as dark as possible (dark curtains or sleep masks are great ways to block out the light you have no control over).
Get Rid of Screens
Flipping through channels or scrolling through your news feed right before bed keeps your brain from winding down for the best zzzs. The biggest offense most screens impose, however, is the blue back-light emitted that keeps your brain in wake mode.
Ideally, the best option is to shut off all the screens in the bedroom within a couple hours of bedtime. However, if the screen is unavoidable, use a night mode setting or app that reduces blue light on the screen.
Choose the Right Sleep System
The right sleep system should be the focal point of your sleepy abode…not just aesthetically, but functionally. You need a mattress that doesn’t just provide a marginally comfortable flat surface for you to collapse on at the end of the day. You need a mattress on which you can stay comfortable and cool all night, and also supports your body’s natural, healthy shape.
Same goes for your pillow, and even your bed frame. Adjustable foundations provide a myriad of health benefits. They can help relieve pressure on your heart and major organs, improve blood flow, alleviate back pain, relieve acid reflux and snoring, and so, so much more. And with the best adjustable beds, you can even get a relaxing, health-promoting massage whenever your heart desires!
Choose Calming Colors in the Bedroom
Believe it or not, there can be function to your fashion. The colors with which you choose to decorate or paint your bedroom can have a profound influence on your sleep.
A study done by Travelodge looked into 2,000 homes and found that blue is the most sleep-inducing color, closely followed by yellows and greens.
Subjects of the study with these colors reported more sleep on average than those with more stimulating colors, such as purple (the color, not the super awesome comfort technology, which will actually enhance your sleep). According to the study, you might also want to steer clear of browns and grays.
Fill the Air With Soothing Scents
Aromatherapy can also create a relaxing and calming atmosphere. Studies show that the smells in your room can greatly enhance or hinder sleep. Make sure to keep your bedding washed, mattress clean, and the air full of relaxing scents, such as lavender.
Set Up Your Room for the Best Night’s Sleep
Setting up your bedroom for the best sleep of your life can be simple; you just have to remember these simple sleep tips:
- Keep the room cool — The ideal temperature is between 60º and 67º Fahrenheit.
- Control the noise — Drown out unwanted sounds with white noise from a machine, app, or even a fan.
- Clear the clutter — Your mind reflects your environment, so keep your room stress-free and organized.
- Get the right lighting — Warm, dim lights signal your brain to get ready for sleep.
- Turn screens off — The content keeps your brain buzzing, and the backlight keeps your brain awake.
- Choose your sleep system — The right mattress, pillow, and foundation will keep your body cool, comfortable, and supported for rejuvenating sleep.
- Decorate with calming colors — Blues, greens, and yellows are the most conducive to deep sleep.
- Fill the air with soothing scents — The smells in your bedroom can make or break your sleep, so keep it clean and use soothing aromas.