How to make your Bedroom Environment Essential for Sleep
Sleep experts have discovered that sleep quality doesn’t just rely on the physical body. The environment around you and your bedtime routine is equally as important to your sleep hygiene. Apart from maintaining a good routine at night that supports a consistent sleep schedule, it’s become clear that the bedroom is a key factor in your sleep quality. Below are some tips on how to ensure that your sleep environment, aka your bedroom environment, is the best it can be.
The very basis of your bedroom is your walls and floor. Though there’s not much you can do with your floor, other than perhaps adding a cozy rug if you find it warranted, you can easily change your walls to make them more conducive to a good night’s sleep. You’ll want to choose a color that isn’t too bright or bold as those colors will fight against the calming ambiance that you want your room to have.
According to experts, the best color to paint your room is blue. This is because of the way the brain registers the color blue compared to other colors. There are receptors in the retinas known as ganglion cells that work with the brain to register the color blue. Once registered, the sight is communicated to the same area of the brain where natural chemicals like melatonin and cortisol are created. This particular stimulation promotes the creation of melatonin – the sleep hormone- while blocking the creation of cortisol – the stress hormone. This process works best when the blue is a soft tint instead of something deep or bold.
Another great color to paint your bedroom is yellow, as it is a color that promotes calm and tranquility. Experts find that people feel very peaceful when they are in a yellow room. Just like with blue, you’ll want your yellow to be a soft, pastel tint as a brighter yellow is shown to boost energy and stimulate the mind. Other colors that are good for sleep – as long as the correct tint is chosen – are green, light gray, light pink, and beige.
Whatever color you choose, make sure you choose flat paint. Anything with shine or gloss as a finish will make your walls reflect any light in the area, creating a bright environment even when the colors themselves aren’t bright. This is particularly an issue when you’re trying to sleep.
When it’s time for bed, your bedroom should be shrouded in complete darkness for optimal sleep. This means you should avoid having a lamp or hall light on, and you should get blackout curtains to keep any outdoor light safely out of your sleeping environment. If a light is needed so you can safely navigate your room, it’s best to keep this light small, dim, and warm. It’s also a good idea to keep this light low to the ground, both to make your walking path illuminated and to keep the light from shining in your eyes.
Before bedtime, lights are okay in your room as long as you keep them low and warm. This is especially true for your bedside lamp that you may use while reading or relaxing before bed. Though there is a trend to use more energy-efficient bulbs like LED lights in the house, this might not be the smart choice for your bedroom lighting. These lights often produce blue light, just as your TV, phone, or other electronics do. Blue light should be avoided at all costs before bed, so it’s best to choose a light that’s warm and non-blue light. If you have your heart set on LED lights, use a red or amber color as they work against blue-light emission and promote a warm, calming feeling in the area they light.
The centerpiece of your room is your bed, where you’ll experience your night of sleep whether it’s good or bad. Your bed can have a great impact on your sleep quality. You’ll want a mattress that is big enough to be comfortable for you while not too big that it makes the bedroom feel cramped. The mattress should be a firmness that you find comfortable, something that everyone feels different about. If you like soft, go with soft, if you like hard, go with hard, and so on. If you’re part of a relationship and your partner doesn’t enjoy the same type of mattress as you, look into adjustable mattresses. If you get hot at night, you might want to look into cooling mattresses. It’s also recommended that you replace your mattress every 5 years to reduce discomfort and allergens.
The mattress isn’t the only part of the bed that’s important for sleep. You’ll also want to ensure your bedding suits your needs. If you’re easily overheated while sleeping, choose blanket material that promotes cooling and moisture-wicking while avoiding anything too thick or fuzzy which will add heat. You’ll want to choose pillows that work well with whatever position you enjoy sleeping in, and that are fresh, lump-free, and allergy-friendly.
Organization and Air Quality
As previously mentioned, you’ll want to ensure that the room isn’t too cramped with an oversized bed or too much furniture. Many people find success in avoiding walls near their bed to keep from feeling closed in while trying to rest. Try to keep your bedroom as clean and clutter-free as possible, making the environment feel more comfortable and positive.
Airflow and temperature are very important when it comes to sleep. The way your bedroom is organized can factor into the way the air is flowing, but you’ll also want to do a few other things to help. First, you’ll want to keep your room at a good temperature. The best sleep occurs in a room that’s between 60-70 degrees, according to experts. If you find that room gets stuffy or too hot at night, try adding a fan or cracking a window. If your bedroom’s air is too dry, invest in a humidifier.
Many people have found success with having plants in their bedrooms, which regulate humidity, calm the mind, and purify the air. Many people swear by having candles or essential oils in the room to promote feelings of relaxation and to make the air more comfortable to breathe. It’s also best to avoid eating or drinking things other than water in your room to keep any lingering odors out.
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