It’s no secret that staying asleep becomes more difficult as we age. According to the results of a 2005 poll conducted by the National Sleep Foundation, 39% of adults ages 55 and older said they wake up a lot during the night (compared to 24% of adults ages 18-29 and 31% of adults ages 30-49).
But Alexandra Zatarain, Co-Founder and CMO of Eight Sleep, says that outside factors—including the environment we sleep in—can have a substantial effect on the quantity and quality of our sleep. In a recent article published in the Huffington Post, Zatarain discusses how bedroom setup can impact sleep, and we thought we’d share a few of her insights:
- A comfortable mattress is key to getting a good night’s sleep, and it’s important to take the time to select one that works for you. Many mattress companies offer trial periods and warranties, so do not be afraid to use them. For guidance when buying a mattress, consult The Mattress Nerd.
- The right sleep temperature is also important,as being too hot or too cold can make it difficult to fall or stay asleep. Researchers recommend a sleep temperature of between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit, and Zatarain recommends looking into a smart thermostat, which allows you to schedule your sleep temperature and self-adjusts throughout the night to keep you comfortable. It’s also important to note that your body adjusts its own temperature throughout the night, so wearing less to bed allows your body to better regulate its own temperature.
- A pillow designed for your sleeping position is likely the pillow you will find most comfortable. Memory foam pillows are a good option for back sleepers, as they provide consistent neck support. Side sleepers should use a medium to firm pillow for their head and place a pillow between their knees to encourage proper spine alignment. Sleeping on your stomach is not recommended, so if you’re a stomach sleeper, consider trying a body pillow to help you adapt to side-sleeping (as a pillow against the full length of your body simulates the feeling of sleeping on your stomach.)
- Look into blackout curtains and noise-cancelling panels or white noise machines if you’re sensitive to light or noise. Blackout curtainsblock outside light that may come through blinds, shades or lighter curtains. Noise-cancelling panels dampen the echo and reverberation of outside sounds through absorption, while white noise machines mask these sounds and encourage relaxation.
Read the full article here.