How sleep-friendly is your bedroom?

Kept awake at night, your mind may wander to the book sitting on the bedside table, your laptop flashing from across the room, that message you need to send. And your eyes may spy the flickering lights from your computer or the hovering streetlamp outside your window. Your ears may detect the noise from distant clattering trains or the humming of the refrigerator. You might toss and turn on a creaky old mattress, flip and fluff your pillow, thrash the sheets around your ankles, or kick off the comforter.

The quality of your sleep depends so much on the quality of your sleep environment. Unless they're just dog-tired or they've stayed up way past their bedtime, some people can find it tough to fall asleep in their bedroom. How sleep-friendly is your bedroom? Does it need a bedtime makeover?

Use your senses to scan your bedroom for a few sleep-friendly factors:

  • Look around your room: Do you see a television? Do you see a laptop computer or other office equipment? Piles of paperwork?
  • Turn off the lights in your bedroom. Now count how many tiny flickers of light still shine. If you lost count after your cell phone, your laptop, the lights from the television, the streetlamp outside, and your iPad, your bedroom isn't very sleep-friendly.
  • Close your eyes and listen to the sounds of your room. How many different distinctive sounds can you detect? Do you hear the washer and dryer tumbling? Is there street noise?
  • Take a moment to feel the air in the room. Is it stuffy? Overly hot? Too chilly? Just right?
  • As you tuck in, think about the comfort level of your bed itself. Is the mattress meeting your needs? Are your sheets and blankets appropriate for the season?

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