Body and Bedroom Optimization Tips for a Better Night's Sleep
Statistics estimate that 75 percent of Americans report having sleep problems at least three or more nights per week, which is about 70 million individuals nationwide. A lack of sleep can cause a myriad of physical and emotional symptoms including difficulty concentrating, irritability and lower performance levels overall. With this in mind, consider taking these nine easy tips to optimize the body and the bedroom to promote a better night’s sleep.
Get in Sync With Circadian Rhythms
Circadian rhythms are 24-hour cycles in living being’s physical processes that are endogenously generated as well as by external cues such as temperature and sunlight. These natural rhythms can fall out of sync, preventing individuals from getting the recommended amount of daily sleep. Try to stick with a solid sleep schedule—even on weekends—and avoid napping to help the body realign with circadian rhythms for better overall sleep.
Take Care of Your Body
Those who live a generally sedentary lifestyle at home and at work, should take at least 30 minutes a day to exercise and should also ensure. Not only does physical fitness improve health, but it also helps restore natural circadian rhythms as the body natural tires from the workout. With the exception of stretching movements, avoid exercise an hour before bedtime.
Certain types of food and drink can disrupt sleep patterns and should be avoided as bedtime approaches. Spicy or sweet foods are common culprits, and are best enjoyed during the daytime. Caffeine and nicotine are stimulants with obvious sleep repercussions, but what many don’t realize is so is alcohol. That nightcap may help one get to sleep, but alcohol is known to often disrupt one’s sleep in the middle of the night.
Maintain a Sleep-Friendly Environment
While some may like a warm and cozy bedroom environment, the human body tends to sleep better when the room temperature is between 60-67 degrees Fahrenheit. Some individuals opt to use dehumidifiers, fans and other implements to help regulate room temps without utilizing air conditioners.
Blue light is a relatively modern term that refers to the light emitted by the screens many covet dearly—laptops, cell phones, LCD televisions and readers, etc. Blue light can actually damage the eyes over time and seemingly make them tired at night, but it also has an effect on the brain that is activating. Hence, blue light is altering the sleep patterns of millions, so avoid such devices for at least an hour prior to retiring for the evening.
There are modern bulbs with built-in microprocessors such as the Drift Light, which operates just like other bulbs but with a twist. Activate its ‘midnight mode’ and the bulb slowly fades into darkness over the course of 37 minutes. These bulbs are an affordable and fast way to transition the bedroom to promote better sleep.
Those who prefer complete darkness for sleep and are not fond of eye masks should consider investing in black out curtains for the bedroom. While adding beauty to a room, these curtains can be an ideal solution for those who have eastern facing windows or a surplus of outdoor lighting shining inside.
While not a viable solution for those who require complete silence for sleeping, a sound machine that creates nature sounds or white noise can help certain individuals fall asleep and stay asleep longer. As an alternative to buying a machine, one can use their computer and find a huge selection of free ‘sleep promoting music’ online.
Establish a Bedtime Ritual
Parents don’t hesitate to establish such routines for their children, but many tend to neglect creating one for themselves. Explore various relaxing and stress-relieving activities in the evening such as reading, meditation, or warm baths that tend to have sleep-inducing effects.
Start at the Source: The Mattress
Did you know that new bedding is shown to improve sleep quality? Before you make any huge (or expensive) changes, check out your mattress situation.
Dylan Snyder is a team leader and real estate consultant at The Snyder Group. His business is augmented by his high-caliber team of seasoned buyer specialists and a dedicated marketing department. He believes a good home caters to a healthy lifestyle, and that sleep quality should be considered when making any changes to the home or bedroom.