After an exhausting day, does restful and natural sleep elude you just when you need it most? The problem may lie in your bedroom environment itself.

The average American gets only six hours and 40 minutes of sleep a night, falling far short of the National Sleep Foundation’s recommendation of seven to nine hours of restful sleep. If you are among the sleep-deprived, and you want to fall asleep naturally without sleep aids, take a careful look at how your bedroom environment may be sabotaging your sleep.

“A good laugh and a long sleep are the two best cures for anything.”

Irish Proverb

Six Ways to Make Your Bedroom a Sanctuary for Sleep

For those struggling to either get to sleep or stay asleep, the first place to start is in assessing the room in which you snooze:

There are Many Ways to Promote Great Sleep, but Look at Your Bedroom First

  1. Keep it dark – A stray streetlight beam or a TV left on overnight can interfere with your restful sleep, and the light of the morning sun flooding your room will wake you up before you may need to. Soft night light for midnight forays should not disturb you, but if you sleep during the day, blocking blinds or a sleep mask may be necessary.
  2. Keep it quiet – Keep your bedroom a sanctuary of quiet and peace. If you can hear dogs barking or people chatting, or if your spouse snores, you’ll not get the restful sleep you need to function fully. Earplugs are one way to block out sound, or you can try white noise or relaxation CDs. Some sleepers have found the sound a whirring fan makes soothes them into slumber.
  3. Keep the temperature comfortable – You don’t want to wake up in a pool of perspiration, but to achieve restful sleep, neither do you want to become so uncomfortably cold that you must get up and rummage in the closet for an extra blanket. Then you’ll really be awake.
  4. Keep your mattress in good condition – Goldilocks would agree that your bed plays a huge part in your quest for restful sleep. It should be comfortable and supportive enough that you do not toss and turn all night nor wake up with aches and pains in the morning. Did you know it is suggested that you buy a new mattress every five to seven years?
  5. Keep it well-ventilated – Be sure to air your bedroom out regularly and wash the bedding often. An air purifier or humidifier may also help with unpleasant air quality. And don’t forget that certain scents, like lavender, promote natural and restful sleep.
  6. Keep it inviting – Does your room’s décor gives you nightmares? Or is it inviting and pleasant, a welcoming refuge at the end of a long day? If there are heaps of clothes on the floor or draped over an old exercise machine, or stacks of paper about to topple off the dresser, the sense of chaos might interfere with the relaxation necessary for restful and natural sleep.

Other ways to promote high-quality, natural and restful sleep include herbs and supplements, aromatherapy, exercise, and relaxing meditation. But no remedy will be effective until you first set the stage and ensure your bedroom is the perfect environment for slumber by keeping the temperature at the proper level, shutting out noise and light, investing in a good mattress, creating a visually pleasing space, and making certain the air is fresh.

Do your kids have trouble sleeping? That could be a cause for a restless night too. Read more about helping your children sleep here.

Have a good night!

“Discover the great ideas that lie inside you by discovering the power of sleep.”

Arianna Huffington