Sleep Environment Basics

Posted by Tyler Britton on Dec 28, 2020 8:00:00 AM


Why Sleep Environment Matters

If you are looking for ways to improve your sleep quality overall, one of the easiest ways to start is to begin by taking inventory of how your bed and bedding may be adding or subtracting to the overall experience.  Take a second to think about your bedding right now.  Does it make you feel like you want to climb right into bed?  Or is it lumpy, scratchy, or just downright too hot?

It was one said that there are two things in life not to skimp out on: comfortable shoes, and comfortable bedding.  The logic is that when you are not in one, you are in the other!

While this is not exactly true, the point remains that having comfortable bedding can support an overall quality of sleep, which can lead to an overall improved quality of life.  While there are a lot of ways to improve sleep quality, in this article you will see a few interesting and potentially new ideas.

The Basics of Quality Sleep Environment

The basic sleep set up for an ideal sleep environment includes these factors:

  • Bedding and sheets
  • Temperature
  • Light
  • Sounds

While all of these are worthwhile aspects of sleep environment to take a look at, in this article you will learn primarily about the first two bulleted points.  This is because these two are fundamental for establishing a quality sleep environment.

Basics 1: Cool Off During Sleep

One product that is designed to cool the body down during sleep is called the chiliPAD. It’s a water-filled mat, which is placed on top of the mattress and under the sheets. The chiliPAD cycles cool water (around 55 degrees) through the mattress, which can promote better, deeper, and more restorative sleep.

Cooling down before and during sleep is associated with some distinct improvements to sleep quality, including:

  • Reduced night-sweats
  • Shorter time to fall asleep
  • Less tossing and turning during sleep

Also, waking up to a cool room kick-starts the body into day-time mode. Just like a cold cup of water can make you feel more alert; a nice cool room can encourage getting up and moving.

Basic 2: Bedding

An important consideration for the actual mattress is the level of firmness or softness that you desire.  It may be intuitive to think that the softer the bed the more comfortable it is, but this is not necessarily true for all people.

Many people are surprised to learn that they sleep much better with a slightly firmer mattress than they would initially have thought.  A simple way to find out the preferred firmness of your future mattress is to trial an adjustable mattress.

Basic 3: Ideal Pillow

Do you wake up with neck pain? Does your neck get stiff at night and you have to rouse and move to get comfortable again? Do your arms/hands fall asleep at night?

All of these can be heavily mediated by your pillow. A nice pillow is not a luxury, it’s a necessity.

A nice pillow can change your sleeping-life in a good or bad way. The difference between an ergonomic, memory foam pillow and the cheapest pillow you can find is only about $20. This is the price of a few lattes. And considering how long our pillows last and how much difference they can make in your quality of sleep, that $20 a fantastic investment.

Basic 4: Quality Sheets

Like your pillow, nice sheets shouldn’t just be a luxury. They can be instrumental in giving you that warm and fuzzy feeling that helps you get to sleep. Nice sheets not only feel more comfortable, but they usually breathe better, which is nice in hot summers.

Also like pillows, the difference between high quality and low quality sheets is not much money: perhaps $40 or $50. Considering that sheets tend to last a couple of years or more, depending on your use, they, also, are an excellent investment.

Nice sheets include higher thread count (600+), with a range of different materials from cotton to bamboo. What matters is what materials feels best to you.

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