An estimated 60 million Americans suffer from sleep disorders or deprivation. While feeling drowsy after a night of tossing and turning is tough, the impact of sleep on our overall well-being is much greater. "We've really moved from thinking about sleep as a luxury to thinking about it as a need and something that we need to prioritize in our daily lives in order to be as mentally and physically healthy as we can," says Natalie Dautovich, the National Sleep Foundation's Environmental Scholar.
Poor sleep has been associated with an increased risk of high blood pressure, obesity, and compromised immune system functioning. It can also do a number on your mental state, making you more negative and irritable. One of the biggest factors affecting sleep quality is the condition of a person's bedroom. Dautovich says the best bedrooms for sleep are general those that are dark, quiet, cool, and comfortable. These days there are many different products out there that may get you the right bedroom for your sleep needs. Here are some of the most popular products and how they may help.
Turn Off Your Gadgets
While it's tempting to find an app or electronic device to help you sleep, there's one inconvenient truth about most electronics: They're sabotaging your sleep, according to a recent study from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Researchers found that melatonin, a hormone secreted by the body to help promote sleep, is suppressed when you're exposed to more than two hours of blue light – which is emitted by iPads, computers, phones, and LCD television screens – before you go to sleep. Previous research shows that lower levels of melatonin can cause less and lower-quality sleep. To counter these effects, try to reduce your blue-light exposure before bed by dimming your device to its lowest level, changing the contrast to a black background with a white font, moving it farther from your face, and avoiding alarm clocks with blue light while sleeping, says study co-author Mariana Figueiro.
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