Supercharge Your Sleep With Seven Simple Upgrades
These seven simple upgrades to your home environment are backed by science and can help to supercharge your sleep.
Upgrading your at-home sleep environment can be as easy as turning down the thermostat, wearing a blackout eye mask, and having your pet sleep on the floor rather than in the bed with you.
Some extra relaxing ways to wind down include “beditation” and spritzing or diffusing lavender oil over your pillows.
The deep touch pressure from weighted blankets can provide you with the final boost you need to supercharge your sleep for your deepest rest yet.
Did you know?
The color most associated with improved sleep and relaxation is light blue, so consider painting your bedroom or swapping out your decor and bedding for some more bluish hues - we’re big fans of the Glass Blue Tree Napper!
There’s a lot that goes into getting the perfect night’s sleep. Aligning things like the temperature of your room, the noises around you, the various lights seeping in, and even the type of blankets you use can all impact your sleep. Disrupt one thing, and you may disrupt your whole night of sleep - it almost comes down to an exact science!
While there are plenty of fancy gadgets out there designed to track and improve your time spent sleeping, the truth is, simplicity wins when it comes to sleep hacks. These seven simple upgrades to your home environment are backed by science and can help to supercharge your sleep. Let’s dive into the research, so you can start snoozing better tonight!
Keep It Chilly
Although a nice and toasty room seems like the coziest way to drift off to sleep in the wintertime, our bodies actually prefer our bedrooms to be a bit chillier. You probably know this already - think back to a time when you went to bed wearing layers of blankets and pajamas and woke up sweating by midnight.
Photo by Wesley Tingey on Unsplash
The science behind this relates to the internal temperature shift that occurs in tandem with our circadian rhythms, which are our body’s internal clocks. Body temperature tends to decrease around bedtime and continues to decrease until its lowest point at about 5 am. If we have our bedrooms too warm, it can disrupt this natural cycle.
A perfect combination is a room of about 67 degrees Fahrenheit with a breathable Bearaby weighted blanket atop you to keep you at just the right temperature.
Pets In Their Own Beds
This one is tough, especially if you love sleeping with your pup (like we do!). But their presence in your bed may impact your sleep in a negative way. Some studies have shown that people who have their dogs or cats snuggling with them get disrupted more during the night, mostly if you already have a sleep problem.
If you’re a light sleeper or prone to insomnia, you may want to get Fido and Whiskers their own special pet-sized beds on the floor nearby. If you don’t have many sleep problems, but your fur baby is extra-fidgety, extra-large, or extra-skittish, you also may want to focus on having your bed pet-free. Although it seems harsh, if your sleep is impacted night after night from their presence, it may be worth it.
However, no need to fully kick them out of your room! A recent study found that although sleep efficiency was reduced if the dog slept with them in the bed, having the dogs sleeping in the same room didn’t appear to show a disruption in sleep. However, many people do just fine with their dogs and cats sleeping with them, so do what’s best for you!
Swap Blue Light For Amber Glows
It’s well-known by now that blue light at night is no good for our sleep. (In case you don’t know, blue light is emitted from our smartphone and various tech devices and can disrupt our melatonin production.)
Rather than have blue light shining in our eyes, lights that are amber-colored and mimic candlelight are on the opposite end of the spectrum and can help us relax and get to sleep. Try a Himalayan salt lamp before bed to give off that perfect glow (while you read in bed without your smartphone!) to help you upgrade your bedroom with the right kind of light.
Get Your Room Nice And Dark
Speaking of light, it’s not great to have it shining in your eyes while you sleep. When the sunrises get earlier and earlier, it’s hard to sleep past dawn if sunlight is shining through your curtains. Two upgrades to try: over-eye sleep masks (easy version) or installing blackout curtains (advanced version).
Either way can ensure that the various lights we’re exposed to - like the blink of a digital alarm clock, stray headlights from a car driving by, or some sunshine seeping through the window - don’t disrupt your melatonin production earlier than you want it to. Lights out!
Nope, not a typo! “Beditation”, also known as meditating in bed, can be a great way to unwind after a long day and help to lull your mind and body off to sleep. Many times, bouts of insomnia are caused by racing thoughts and endless to-do lists swirling around your head. Simple meditations can allow these monkey mind tendencies to calm down and get into the right headspace for sleep.
Although there are some meditation apps on your phone, there are plenty of free guided sleep meditations you can download on the podcast app or search on YouTube. Hopefully, you can nama’stay in bed for your full 8 hours once you find a beditation that you like best!
Lay On The Lavender
Lavender has been long touted for its benefits for improving sleep and reducing anxiety, and there’s plenty of research to prove it. The lavender plant can be ingested in a supplement, applied topically, or inhaled via its oil with aromatherapy. Whichever way you get it, the components of lavender interact with GABA, one of our main neurotransmitters (brain chemicals) that calms down the nervous system and induces relaxation.
One study found that people with insomnia who were randomized to get lavender oil aromatherapy before bed saw improvements in their overall sleep scores, compared to those who got the scent of almond oil. Try diffusing a high-quality lavender oil near your bed, or mist your pillows with a lavender spray as part of your bedtime ritual.
Deep Pressure, Deep Sleep
Last but not least, we have to touch on our favorite sleep-booster, deep touch pressure! Known by its closest friends as DTP, this special type of pressure that comes from extra weight, touch, or squeezes on our bodies can lead to a cascade of hormones and neurotransmitters that benefit our sleep.
When a weighted blanket adds just the right amount of pressure all over our body while we lay in bed, more serotonin and melatonin get produced, which can help us drift off to our deepest sleep. Do yourself a favor and upgrade your sleep sanctuary with a weighted blanket - your nights and naps will never be the same!