The sun has reached its highest altitude of the year with the summer solstice and we’re celebrating at Sleep Well HQ with more than 16 hours of sunshine a day. But, with these long, lazy hazy days of summer, many of us will struggle to sleep well. It’s just too light outside! We wake up earlier because of the lighter mornings and the temptation is to stay up later. It just doesn’t feel right tucking ourselves into bed when the sun’s not yet set.
Melatonin is the naturally occurring hormone in our bodies that helps regulate our sleep and wake cycle. Our brains secrete more melatonin when it’s dark, sending signals to the body that it’s time to start winding down and getting ready for bed. It’s melatonin that helps make us feel sleepy so it’s important to make your sleep sanctuary as dark as possible.
When it’s time to sleep, make sure your room is as dark as possible. As well as investing in curtains made of thick fabric, buying blackout blinds to block light from the windows can make a huge difference.
If you’re travelling or want an extra layer to make it even darker, pop on an eye mask. From cotton and silk to satin or polyester, eye masks are a great investment. Top Tip: they’re also perfect if you want to have a nap in the day and don’t have time to reapply your makeup!
Sleeping with your window open to keep your room nice and cool is recommended but this can mean that pesky light creeps back in. Secure your blinds in place so they don’t flap and make sure you close your curtains fully; you get the benefit of cooler air without the light creeping in.
Keep the lights down if you get up during the night.If you need some light to move around safely, try installing a dim nightlight in the hall or bathroom or using a small flashlight. This will make it easier for you to fall back to sleep.