Once you hit adulthood, your bedroom should really be transformed and grow up with you. Too many distractions find their way into the bedroom that cause restlessness and could cost you an invaluable night of rest. You may feel some of the sleep hindering habits may help you fall asleep because they have always been a part of your nightly routine. Then again, if you felt you were getting the best sleep possible you wouldn’t have stumbled on this list in the first place. Making an effort to wean your way off these unhealthy bedtime acts could be the only thing standing between you and good night’s sleep you’ve been missing out on.
1. Watching TV and Surfing the Web
More and more people are surprised when they visit my home and don’t find a TV in my bedroom. In the post college days, I’ve always felt the bedroom was made for two things – one of them sleep and the other is definitely not watching TV. Even more surprising to others, is that I keep all electronics, aside from a cell phone out of the bedroom. Having a laptop or tablet open and mindlessly scouring the web or playing games does just as much harm as watching TV late into the night. The bright lights from these screens make it difficult for many to fall asleep, and yet they continue to leave them on each night. The lights also disturb the development of melatonin, the hormone responsible for promoting sleep. If you feel the need to have a TV in the bedroom, invest in one that has the ability to turn off the picture, effectively transforming it into a radio. Additionally, for those who enjoy reading before bed, avoid using backlit e-readers and tablets, opting for something that requires another light source
2. Workaholics Heed these Words
Building on some of the thoughts above, refrain from working or doing coursework in bed. Remember the bedroom is made for two things, sleep and romance. Quarterly reports and term papers hardly fall into this category. Doing work introduces stress and stimulates the brain which is the opposite of what you’re trying to accomplish at bedtime. It also creates an unhealthy sleep pattern where your body recognizes the bed as a place of business and makes it harder to shut down. Have a space assigned in your home for work if you must work away from the office, and keep that place far away from the bedroom. Not only will it enhance your sleep, your partner will also appreciate you separating office and bedroom.
3. Four-legged Friends in Bed
This one is either going to be the easiest step to follow or one of the hardest. Growing up, pets were rarely found on furniture in any house but that has changed drastically. While some pet owners stand firm on the common area furniture, it has become commonplace to let the furry members of the family on the bed. Even the smallest of animals can take up a large amount of space as they tend to move around a lot in bed. They also tend to disturb sleep patterns in much the same way as infants. Investing in a comfy pet bed may be just as important to your night’s rest as the bed you sleep on.
4. Keep Conversations Light
This is not a get out of jail free card for your partner to avoid a fight or deep conversation. It just means they shouldn’t occur between the sheets. Specifically any conflict should try to be settled long before bedtime. Your body is averse to relaxing in a dangerous situation as a means for defense. This makes it difficult to fall asleep as your body continues to fight, and even if you do eventually pass out, you’ll likely wake in the same stressful mood you were in the night before. Some conflict is unavoidable and in some levels healthy, just keep from ambushing your partner in the sac and handle any differences in opinion long before it’s time to sleep.
For more information on healthy sleep habits, you can visit a sleep clinic in your area. Also, having a comfortable mattress is the first step in getting the sleep you need. That paired with eliminating these 4 bedroom activities should have you sleeping like a baby in no time.
This article was written by Brian Levesque. Brian has slowly been making the switch from college grad to functioning adult and has found a good sleep routine to be critical for success. He is now putting his English degree to use as a professional writer for Saatva Mattress. To read more of Brian’s work, visit his Google+.