Everyone knows how important a good night’s sleep can be for our mood and energy levels - but failing to sleep properly and failing to ensure that your bedroom is the perfect sleep haven it should be could also have a big impact on your overall health as well.
New research from the National Institutes of Health has just revealed that sleeping with a TV or light on in the room could be a potential risk factor for gaining weight or developing obesity.
The results were varied depending on the level of artificial light exposure at night. Using a small nightlight wasn’t linked to weight gain, while women who slept with the TV or a light on were 17 per cent more likely to put on 5kg or more.
“Humans are genetically adapted to a natural environment consisting of sunlight during the day and darkness at night.
“Exposure to artificial light at night may alter hormones and other biological processes in ways that raise the risk of health conditions like obesity,” Chandra Jackson, head of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Social and Environmental Determinants of Health Equity Group, said.
Making sure that your bedroom is designed to help facilitate a good night’s sleep, whether you’re worried about weight gain or not, is an absolute must. We lead such busy lives these days that without getting a quality seven or eight hours each night, it can be stressful, difficult and even more tiring trying to get everything done that we need to.
So what can be done? Making sure the room is quiet is a must, while you’re far more likely to have a good night’s rest if the space is dark and cool, as well as clean, tidy and free from dust and other potential allergens.
Installing a dimmer switch so you can quickly and easily adjust the lighting levels of your contemporary classic lights would be a good idea, so you can have a bright space in the morning when getting ready for work but are then able to turn the lights down low when it’s time to kick back, unwind and get ready for bed.
Layering your lights cleverly is a good move in this part of the house, so try and strike the right balance between accent, task and ambient lighting. This means that no matter what you’re doing, you’ll be able to create the lighting you need with no fuss or bother at all.
You can use the likes of floor lamps, chandeliers, pendants, flush-mounted ceiling lights and so on to create your ambient lighting in the bedroom. For task lighting, meanwhile, think about using table lamps on your bedside tables, wall sconces or pendants hanging down above the bed so you can read or do a bit of work from the comfort of your bed.
As for accent lighting, dimmer switches - as previously mentioned - make a great addition to any bedroom. These can help you make the transition from being awake and active to feeling more peaceful and ready for bed.
It’s also important that you choose the right kind of light bulb, as this will have an impact on the way the lighting itself functions and how you work with it. Decide for yourself just how bright you’re happy with the light and choose the lumens based on this.
Have you heard of sleep hygiene?
As well as sorting out the way your bedroom is lit, you can also help give yourself an excellent night’s rest by looking into sleep hygiene practices and seeing if there are any changes you could make in this regard.
If you’re someone who likes a bit of an afternoon nap from time to time, try to limit these to 30 minutes and no more, so you don’t disrupt your nighttime sleep patterns. The closer you get to bedtime, try to avoid drinking coffee or smoking as these could well keep you awake longer than you want to be.
Exercise can cure all sorts of ills and if you haven’t been sleeping properly, what about doing a bit of light walking or cycling to see how this could possibly improve your sleep? Try not to do it too close to bedtime, however, or your energy boost could keep you awake.
Setting yourself up with a good bedtime routine could be just the answer you’ve been looking for, however. It might be that having a warm bath each night is the way to go, or reading a few pages of your favourite book to help lull you off to sleep. Stay away from screens, however, as these can wake your brain up and affect the quality of your sleep.
Trying to avoid any emotional or upsetting conversations or scenarios is also a wise move. No doubt you’ve all had moments where you’ve gone to bed and suddenly your mind comes alive with worry and stress… trying to minimise this as much as possible will go some way towards ensuring that you get the rest you need.
And, as mentioned before, ensuring that your sleeping environment is pleasant is key, so make sure your mattress is comfortable and that you like the feel of the sheets you sleep in. Keep the bedroom cool if possible and adjust any bright lights that could keep you awake.
We’d love to hear how you’ve decorated your bedrooms and how you think the look and feel of this particular space affects how well - or how badly - you sleep. Get in touch with us here at Decolight to let us know what designs you’ve gone for, or if you need a bit of help or advice when it comes to lighting this room of the house.