Sleepless in the suburbs: Is your home keeping you awake?

Can your sleeping environment be contributing to your sleepless nights? There are several ways you can change your bedroom to help you nod off.

Can your sleeping environment be contributing to your sleepless nights? There are several ways you can change your bedroom to help you nod off.



Dear Sleepless in the Suburbs. So, you've bought a new home and it sounds like you are having a tough time nodding off. Have you tried making small environmental changes to improve your chance of a good night's sleep? Well, here are some handy home design hints to help you fight insomnia.


Feng shui


Feng shui expert Steven Post, along with neurosociologist John Zeisel, had a lively discussion at the Brain Event in the Museum of Art in New York. They discussed whether there was an effect of feng shui on the human brain. They both concluded that feng shui is a state of mind - if you believe that your environment affects you, then making your environment peaceful, may help you, especially when you move into a new home. For example, having the bed facing the door can help people feel less claustrophobic because they can see an "escape".


Our advice to new homeowners who are environmentally sensitive? Feng shui your bedroom to your heart's content. It may just be the trick to a good night's sleep.


Make sure your bedroom is just for sleeping


It is so easy to make your bedroom your living room and study all in one. Time is fleeting and because of that, we seem to cram everything into one place. A 2011 poll conducted by the National Sleep Foundation discovered that 95 per cent of adults use technology an hour before bedtime. Phones, TVs, and computers all stimulate the brain and increased stimulation doesn't help you fall asleep, especially if you use them just before or in bed. So, the key is to make your living room or study a nice place to spend some time. When you create a warm, inviting environment to use your technology in, it will stop the temptation to bring them to bed.


You must sleep in the deep dark


Another study conducted by the National Sleep Foundation found that when you are exposed to light, your brain will respond with a message to keep you awake. Therefore, when it is time to sleep it is important for the room to be as dark as humanly possible. Light-blocking curtains and eye masks can eliminate your exposure to unwanted light and make it so much easier to fall asleep.


Don't forget that your bad sleeping patterns may not be your body's fault. If you buy a home or start renting a new house, then it could be the new environment that is disrupting your snooze time. Try making these changes before you nod off and hopefully you won't be sleepless in the suburbs for much longer.