How to Set Up Your Bedroom for a Good Night's Rest
As the room where you may spend nearly a third of your life, the bedroom should be tailored to support its main purpose – sleep. The quality of your sleep can be easy to forget about because as one of the basic biological necessities, we do it without thinking. Stress, medical conditions, and your own habits and behaviors can all interfere with your sleep quality. However, there are many ways to set up your bedroom and use design elements to improve the quality (and many times lengthen the duration) of your sleep.
1. Bed Placement
Bed placement affects the aesthetic balance of the bedroom. Most people naturally place their bed against the largest wall in the room. However, the shape of your room or location of windows or closet doors may require an alternative location. For example, rectangular rooms can be divided into quadrants with the bed in one quadrant and a table and chair or loveseat in the opposite quadrant for balance. Large square rooms may feel more symmetrical and inviting with the bed placed a few feet from the wall, creating an “island” effect.
2. Mattress Comfort
To help your mind and body relax, your mattress should support both sleep and sex. That means you need the right mattress that supports both your weight and preferred sleep position by keeping your spine aligned. Softer mattresses work well for side sleepers, who benefit from their ability to conform to their shape. Back, and especially stomach sleepers, usually sleep better with a firmer mattress because it prevents the spine from bowing. Your weight also plays a role in mattress comfort. The heavier you are the firmer your mattress will need to be.
3. Use Color to Your Advantage
Colors can have a psychological impact. Cool colors like blue and green have a calming effect. A Travelodge survey conducted amongst 2,000 people found that sleep duration was highest in blue rooms. If blue doesn’t work for you, neutrals and pastels have a similar calming effect and allow you to easily change the rest of your décor to match the season.
4. Control the Light
Light exposure heavily impacts your sleep-wake cycle. While you may love light and airy curtains, they may not be enough to keep light pollution out at night. Blackout curtains, heavy drapes, or blinds that keep moonlight and street light from entering the bedroom can help lengthen your sleep cycle.
You also need to control the artificial light in the bedroom. Opt for incandescent rather than high-efficiency light bulbs as they give off a bright blue light that stimulates the brain much in the same way as sunlight. And, if you need a nightlight for the occasional bathroom trip, choose a motion activated model and place it low to the ground so it doesn’t interfere with your sleep.
5. Bring Nature Indoors
Nature has a naturally soothing effect on both mind and body. A walk in the forest can even ease the symptoms of anxiety and depression. You can have that same comfort in your bedroom. Houseplants, many of which can also remove biotoxins, easily bring the color, shape, and scents of nature indoors. Try to find plants that work well for your climate. Some plants give off excess moisture which works well in desert climates while others thrive in the shadows.
The bedroom should feel like a sleep sanctuary that allows your daily stress to stay outside the room. With the right design elements and furniture placement, you’ll be resting at ease before you know it.