As we envisioned what the Glen Lennox community could become, we thought about all the amenities that would reduce stress for residents and support a comfortable and healthy lifestyle. From bike lanes, to a dog park, to state-of-the-art fitness centers in the Link Apartments® Linden and Gwendolyn, every modern convenience is at residents’ fingertips. But at the end of a busy day, if a good night’s sleep is still elusive, we recommend trying these tips for higher quality shut eye.
Set a Schedule—and Stick to It
Our circadian rhythms naturally tell us when it’s time to wake up and when we’re feeling sleepy. Whether you’re a night owl or a morning lark, you will benefit significantly from going to bed and waking up at the same time every day—even on weekends. Start by setting a goal to do this for one week, prying yourself out of bed even when you’re tried. After a week, reflect on if your sleep quality has improved. If the schedule is helping, keep it up!
Create a Sleep-Friendly Environment
For the best sleep, mimic the conditions of a cave in your bedroom—cool, dark and quiet. Experts recommend keeping the thermostat between 60 and 67 degrees for adults, or 65 to 70 if there are children in the house. Programmable thermostats, like the ones in the Link Apartments® Linden, allow you to reduce the temperature at night and automatically increase a few degrees when you get out of bed.
The absence of light sends a critical signal to the body that it is time to rest, so you will want to minimize any natural or artificial light interfering with your sleep. You can install blackout shades that are available in an array of colors and styles or wear a sleep mask.
It’s also important to eliminate bad habits and distractions. Ideally, when you crawl into bed it is time to go sleep, not watch TV, check email or scroll through social media. Perform these activities prior to getting into bed to train your brain that bedtime means sleep time.
Deck Out Your Bed for Maximum Comfort
A high-quality mattress is one of the best investments you can make. It’s an item you use every single night and affects how you feel all day long.
Mattresses should be replaced every six to eight years. Shop for a mattress by your sleep style, for example, softer mattresses are recommended for side sleepers, back sleepers benefit from memory foam or hybrids, while firmer models are optimal for stomach sleepers. Stop by A Goodnight Sleepstore in Chapel Hill to test out and find the right mattress for you. It is locally owned and carries a full line of Tempur-pedic, latex, memory foam, and American-made innerspring mattresses.
For your sheets, worry less about the thread count and instead look for a material that complements your body temperature. The Coolmax Sheet Set offers an instant cool-to-the-touch feel and moisture-wicking if you get hot at night, but opt for flannel, fleece or cotton sateen sheets if you need more warmth. Weighted blankets are another bedding innovation that help some people sleep better. Weighing between five to 30 pounds, the blanket provides pressure that mimics a therapeutic technique called deep pressure stimulation.
Lastly, your bed should be free of all pets and kids. Encourage your little loved ones to sleep in their own beds (although a few cuddles in the morning never hurt anyone!).
After enhancing your sleep habits and environment you still find yourself tossing and turning, it might be time to call in the pros. The UNC Sleep Disorders Center can assist patients with a wide array of sleep-related disorders and offers a variety of therapies to improve sleep. Sweet dreams everyone!