Better Bedroom = Better Sleep

better bedroom = better sleepSummer’s end has us spending more and more time indoors. This gives us more and more time to see all the things we want to change about our homes. My list is seemingly endless, including everything from a new coffee maker to a complete renovation of the basement. Somewhere on that list is a makeover for my bedroom. It has made the top ten every year since we bought this house, but since it is only my husband and me who spend time there, it gets relegated to the bottom of the list. No one else sees it, right? But, when you think about it, we spend a major part of our lives in bed, and as we are explaining this week during Better Sleep Week, adequate rest is incredibly important to our health. With so many Americans suffering from lack of sleep, setting the stage for sleep should be a priority.

Design a Better Bedroom for Sleep

  1. Clear the clutter. The bed should be for sleeping and sex only. Remove any distractions from your room. Keep your bedroom clean and clutter free. It may seem like the perfect place to store your purchases or keepsakes, but a streamlined bedroom is a better bedroom. You don’t want the last thing you see before you shut your eyes to be things you need to put away.
  2. Set boundaries and get a good lock. If your kids are old enough to knock, they should be doing so before entering your room. Did I mention the bed is just for sex and sleep? Both will be better without the potential for unwanted visitors.
  3. Choose soothing colors. Evidence shows, colors matter. A soft palette will encourage decompression after a long day, and encourage relaxations. Studies show purple is the worst color for sleep. Yes, your eyes are closed but what you feel as you get into bed matters.
  4. Abolish screens. There is almost nothing more disruptive to falling asleep than looking at a screen right before trying to snooze. Watch TV in another room, check your email and texts for the last time at least 1/2 hour before going into your bedroom and if you must read, do it the old fashioned way … on paper.
  5. Lower the temperature. Research has shown a cooler room is a better sleeping room. You are better off with more covers and less heat. Our body wants to cool down while we are sleeping and a lower ambient temperature will help it do just that.
  6. Eliminate or muffle sounds. If you are exposed to loud outside noises, try a sound machine or thicker curtains over the windows. Rugs can help muffle outside noises as well. Respect the sleep of others in your house by keeping things quiet after bedtime.
  7. Lower the lights. Even though you are going to shut them off, keep the lights low as you get ready for bed. Bright lights tell your brain it is time to be awake. Remember, we aren’t evolving as fast as our technology. We are still hard-wired to wake and sleep with the sun. Don’t make bedtime feel like midday, you will only be telling your brain to stay awake. When you get in bed, make the room as dark as possible, even to the point of covering digital glowing numbers on clocks and computers.
  8. Finally, and most importantly, the bed itself! We partnered with DUXIANA to bring you Better Sleep Week (check out or #PeaceAtLast contest to win a down comforter valued at over $900,) so I figured I would ask them what makes a great mattress. Seems it is all about maintaining your correct personal posture. The mattress should not dictate your sleeping position, but rather support it. “One of the major misconceptions people have when choosing a mattress is that they confuse the word ‘firm’ for ‘supportive’. Research has shown that beds that are too firm create an inflexible mattress, forcing the body to conform to it.” A good mattress is worth the money. For more tips on how to create a better bed, check out Erin’s post.

You have the perfect bedroom, and still can’t fall asleep or stay asleep? The experts at The Valley Hospital suggest you speak with your doctor.

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Author: Karen Latimer

Karen is a Family Physician, founder and president of Tips From Town. She loves combining all she learned as a doctor with all she continues to learn as a mom of five to bring you interesting, useful and fun information on the Family Pages.