If you suffer from insomnia or frequent nighttime awakenings, the problem could be your sleep environment.
Many factors such as body temperature, noises in the night, mattress type and even bedroom color scheme can all lead to a night of poor sleep.
Does a high thread count equal better sleep? How can pillows help alleviate your allergies?
Find out the answer to these questions and more in our nine top tips for creating the best space for a full night’s rest.
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How Does Your Bedroom Environment Affect Your Sleep?
Your sleep environment affects both your sleep quality and sleep duration.
You’ll sleep far better in a dark, well-ventilated room without sensory disturbances.
As feng shui expert Catherine Hilker puts it:
“An ideal master bedroom will enhance intimacy as well as provide an environment for relaxation, rest, and rejuvenation. As such bedrooms are ideally yin in nature. Yin qualities are quiet, dark, soft, nurturing, introspective, receptive, etc.”
In other words, your sleep environment is crucial to your sleep health so you should try to organize your bedroom to facilitate quietness and calm.
How to Make Your Bedroom Better for Sleeping: 9 Top Tips
Your REM sleep may be interrupted due to light, sound, or smells. If this happens frequently, the impact will start to affect you physically, mentally, and emotionally.
Learn how to make your bedroom better for sleeping with these nine simple tips.
#1 – Create the ideal bedroom temperature
Your bedroom temperature plays a big role in how you sleep. Both shivering and sweating stimulate your brain, keeping rest at bay.
According to sleep psychologist Michelle Drerup:
“Typically it is suggested that the temperature in the bedroom for adults should be between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit for optimal sleep. Your body temperature decreases as part of the sleep initiation process, and this range of temperature is thought to actually help facilitate this decrease.”
You should always use a blanket because the need to curl up and snuggle is hardwired into human DNA.
Play with the temperature regulation in your room until you find the best setting.
Try adding a weighted blanket for warmth.
If you always find your room is too hot, you should try the Moona Active Cooling Pillow Pad.
As one customer, David, puts it:
“I used to wake up during the night very hot and couldn’t get back to sleep, or wake up with a headache that at times would turn into a migraine. Now, I sleep throughout the night, the covers stay on and I haven’t woken up hot in the past week.”
#2 – Cut out all sources of light
Your levels of melatonin are extremely sensitive to light. Even dim lights are enough to suppress the production of melatonin and lead to insomnia.
For optimal sleep, turn off all overhead lights.
If your room is plagued by the glow of streetlights, install blackout shades.
Turn your phone upside down and place your alarm clock under the bed.
A sleep mask is also a quick and easy fix to block all sources of light.
If you don’t enjoy a completely dark room, use gentle lights such as red or pink bulbs.
#3 – Block out unwanted sound
If bumps in the night constantly upset your circadian rhythm, this will have wide reaching impacts on your health.
Try using ear plugs or headphones to block out sound.
Bluetooth Sleep Headphone are great for cutting out external noise and sending you to sleep to your favorite calming music or meditation.
These in-ear headphones help to keep pesky sounds at bay an fit snug in your ears.
Alternatively, try blocking out sound with a white noise machine.
White noise is a mixture of sound waves produced at the same frequency. Because it is a steady stream of sound, it prevents you from being startled by a pet or passing car during the night.
As one user, Sarah E, puts it:
“Perfect sound to lull me to sleep and cover the sound of my neighbor’s barking dogs! Even helps keep my own dog asleep! Highly recommend!”
#4 – Choose comfortable bedding
If you want to sleep better at night, start with your sheets.
Bright, vibrant bedspread colors may stimulate your brain into thinking it is daytime. Buy more relaxing sets of sheets such as purple, gray, or blue instead.
Likewise, a high thread count doesn’t equal better sleep. Hot sleepers should steer away from anything over 400 as these will trap heat. Check out some great mattress reviews
Cotton sheets are the best for sleeping because they keep you cool in summer and warm in winter.
If you suffer from an anxiety or stress induced sleep disorder, try a weighted blanket. These blankets use pressure therapy to produce calming effects while you sleep. The soothing chemicals released in your body are similar to those you get during a hug.
#5 – Pick a relaxing color scheme
Improve your sleep hygiene with a bedroom color scheme that promotes rest and relaxation.
Bright colors are too energizing and will stimulate your brain even late at night.
Warmer colors such as red and orange are especially prone to insomnia.
When creating a bedroom design, choose cool colors like blue and green. Studies have shown that blue has the greatest calming effect on the brain.
Green will remind you of nature and make you feel as if you’re sitting in a relaxing forest. With both green and blue, light and dark shades have similar effects.
If you prefer vibrant colors, choose a pale, muted tone (such as blush pink or sugar cookie yellow) that is similar to early morning light. This will help you wake-up without disturbing your rest.
#6 – Remove electronic devices
When it comes to electronics, it’s not just the blue light keeping you awake — it’s the distraction, too.
When you’re struggling with insomnia, the knowledge that you can kill time watching TV or playing on your phone will cause you to stay awake even longer.
Likewise, watching the hours tick by on a digital alarm clock will make you worry about the hours of sleep you are missing.
For the most restful sleep, remove all electronic devices from your room.
Stop using your phone and laptop at least an hour or so before bedtime.
If you need an alarm clock to wake up, turn it away from you so that you can’t read the time in the middle of the night.
#7 – Address your allergies
That’s not true.
Sensitivities to dust mites, pet dander, pollen, and mold are some of the most common allergic reactions associated with poor sleep.
If any of these cause your allergies to flare up, try the following:
- Use multiple pillows to keep your head elevated and drain your sinuses during the night.
- Install a humidifier or dehumidifier depending on your type of allergies.
- If you are allergic to pollen, take a shower at least one hour before bed to wash off any outside residue.
- Do not let your pets sleep with you and keep them off your bed throughout the day.
#8 – Add in plants
According to feng shui expert Jeffrey Welder, incorporating plants into your bedroom design will help you sleep better:
“Plants have a calming effect through their soothing green colors and by providing oxygen.”
He recommends using bonsai trees, peace lilies, English Ivy, rubber plants, or hanging terrariums.
In addition to the calming effect of plants, adding shrubbery will also filter toxins in the air and produce oxygen while you sleep.
Keep plants in the corners of the room to promote energy and airflow.
Start with at least two plants for the ultimate calming effect.
#9 – Try relaxing smells
The right scent can help send you off into sweet dreams.
Sleep experts have found that lavender oil and peppermint help people with sleep issues get better shut-eye.
Lavender has been proven to lower blood pressure, heart rate, and body temperature.
Peppermint is often used to soothe aching joints or upset stomachs.
The calming qualities of both herbs make them excellent scents for improving sleep quality.
For the best results, add a drop of lavender or peppermint essential oil to an air purifier. You can buy a lavender candle or spray the scents on your sheets before bed each night or try Deep Sleep Pillow Spray.
To Sum Up
Now that you know how to make your bedroom better for sleeping, it’s time to try it out.
Improve the feng shui (and oxygen) in your room by adding a few plants. Bring cool colors into your décor with dark blue or green bedsheets.
Remember to avoid bright, warm hues, such as red or orange, because these will stimulate brain activity.
Welcome to Snoozerville! I’m Dr. Alex Hartley, your guide to the world of restful sleep. With a Ph.D. in Sleep Science and years of experience as a sleep therapist, I’ve dedicated my life to understanding and improving sleep quality. My passion lies in uncovering the mysteries of sleep and sharing practical, science-backed advice to help you achieve the best rest possible. Beyond my academic pursuits, I’m an advocate for mindfulness and relaxation techniques, which I incorporate into my daily routine. At Snoozerville, I aim to transform your nights, combining the latest research with easy-to-implement tips. Whether you’re a chronic insomniac or just looking to improve your sleep hygiene, join me on this journey towards peaceful, rejuvenating sleep.