Easy Ways To Improve Your Sleep When You're a Light Sleeper
Sleep for me can be an elusive thing. While I generally don't have issues falling asleep, staying asleep is whole other can of worms. I am simply not a deep sleeper, never have been except when I was a teenager and my body needed hours upon hours to wreck hormonal havoc on me. Lately I've been determined to if not completely fix the issue at least improve and ensure that I am not woken up multiple times throughout the night. I've recently introduced a few things into my nighttime routine along with some things that I have been doing for years that have helped.
Black out curtains
I purchased black out curtains a few years ago and they have been amazing. Not only are they great if you simply want privacy (no light reflection can be seen from outside), but you also have the benefit of darkening your room at night completely. This helps lull the body into a deeper sleep. Mine have helped a lot. I have this set from Wayfair in my bedroom. They also function as thermal curtains which is an added bonus for cold winter months.
A recent addition to my nighttime repertoire. I'm still not a hundred percent sure I like them, but I know they work for other light sleepers. There is something about all sound being blocked out that bugs me a bit. But it does help. I purchased this brand from Amazon.
Read a book
I've mentioned reading before as a great way to wind down after before bed. This is a habit that I have admittedly fallen out of recently and want to get back on track with because it really does help. Just make sure that the book you are reading is one you won't be compelled to stay up all night reading. I'm looking at you Game of Thrones. I try to stick with either something soapy and romantic (I'm outing secret my romance novel addiction here) or non-fiction.
Invest in a white noise machine
I have recently considered buying one as I know a few people who swear by them and say that it really helps their sleep. White noise is scientifically proven to help with a deeper sleep. When we sleep our brains are still processing noise (something light sleepers struggle with particularly). White noise has been shown to drown out these "background noises". So it's worth a shot.
Listen to light music
Similar to white noise, some people find soft music helps lull them into a deeper sleep. I cannot completely vouch for this one. Music generally does the opposite for me as my brain really likes music and finds it engaging. I am a Bossa Nova (Brazilian Jazz) lover and it's the only type of music that relaxes me enough to fall asleep to. I recommend Astrud Gilberto's and Babel Gilberto's music specifically. So relaxing.
Stop drinking liquids before bed
This one is fairly obvious, but going to sleep with a full bladder will affect your sleep. I am notorious for doing this because I immediately get thirsty before bed and chug a glass of water. And then find myself getting up to go the bathroom at 2am. It['s a vicious cycle. So if you can manage it, try to stop drinking liquids at least two hours before your bedtime. Your bladder will thank you.
Turn the heat off or open a window
In the fall and winter months I turn all heating off in my bedroom before going to bed. I get incredibly hot when I sleep and being hot will wake you up and make it hard to fall back asleep. In the summer I sleep with my ceiling fan on to keep the air circulating without it being too chilly.
Try a cooling pillow
I mentioned in my Amazon Wish List post that I wanted a Cooling Pillow. My body is like a little furnace most nights and I get especially hot around my head and neck at night. A pillow with cooling gel helps negate this and aid with a more conformable sleep.
Invest in a weighted blanket
Funny/weird story: When I had dental surgery last month my dentist took a few x-rays. The dental assistant placed that large heavy radiation shield blanket thing-y on top of my body as I lay in the chair. And I immediately felt calm. Like instantly. The weight of it was so comforting that I actually started to fall asleep! As soon as I got back home I started googling "weighted blankets". Turns out the science behind this is pretty solid and amazing. Weighted blankets have been shown to help children with autism, people dealing with anxiety and people who struggle with sleep issues. I will be investing in one for the winter months!
Are you a light sleeper? What tips and tricks have you found work to help you have a deeper, more restful sleep? Let me know in the comments!