Bright lights, loud noises, uncomfortable temperatures … these and other factors can lead to disrupted sleep. The following tips can help you to help create an environment that is calming, relaxing and soothing - one that encourages quality rest and sleep.
Check your bed. Is it comfortable? Lie down on it during the day, when you are not tired, and see how it feels. A bed that is too soft, too firm or that sags in the middle can impede your sleep. You can fix a too-firm bed with top padding, but a bed that is too soft or sagging should be replaced. It may seem expensive, but considering that you spend about 1/3 of your life on your bed - not to mention how quality of sleep affects your waking hours - a comfortable bed is worth the price.
• And Your Pillows. Like your bed, too soft or too firm pillows can affect your quality of sleep (as can the number of pillows you use). Experiment with different pillow types until you find ones that work best for you. If you suffer from allergies, consider hypoallergenic pillow.
• Look at Your Surroundings. Dr. Weil encourages a clutter-free home, which can help create a calm environment. Clean out anything you do not need in your bedroom, such as televisions, computers, stacks of papers, and knick-knacks, making the room’s sole purposes sleep and intimacy.
• Light and Sound. Excessive light and noise can impede quality sleep. To help block bright light, consider opaque window shades. If you have skylights, position your bed so your face is not directly in sunlight in the morning. For loud noises, consider inexpensive earplugs to block out sound or a "white noise" machine.
• Ideal Temperatures. Regulate the temperature in your bedroom so it is not too hot or too cold. Many people find that an ideal temperature is around 60 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit, but this depends on many factors including sleepwear preference, how many blankets you use, and your metabolism. Experiment to find the right temperature. If you and your partner disagree, compromise on a temperature midway between your respective comfort zones.
• Set the Scene. What promotes relaxation for you? Soft, lulling music, complete darkness, candlelight, a good book before bed… all can encourage relaxation and rest. Determine what helps promote a relaxed state and incorporate those elements into your nighttime routine and bedroom.