Getting a good night sleep has been very challenging and by the morning I fell like my eyes have been open all night. When we travel I know and expect that I will not get a good night sleep because we are away from home and just not comfortable enough to fully relax.
Having a 4 year old at 53 and needing to be alert for when he wakes up at night has me drained with his room monitor display and audio on all night. Then there is the ambient light that’s from the monitor of the alarm system display, the cable box and TV display. All of this has contributed to me not being able to get a restful or decent night’s sleep.
It was suggested for me to try Melatonin or have a glass of wine before going to sleep. Though that sounds great, it’s not feasible with having to be alert and staying alert for our son. I remembered using an eye mask when I was younger and traveled abroad and thought I would give it a try and see how it worked.
The eye mask seems to be one of the simplest and most effective of these solutions. If I can block out the lights that are reflecting and get it to be true darkness, it could causes me to get a more restful night sleep. When I am not feeling well and my husband takes the helm then I go full force and also use earplugs to improve my chance of falling asleep and sleeping through the night.
I found a popular brand of blackout style mask at Marshalls for $3.99 and also found a mask set for $8.00, which includes the eye mask, satin pillow and jasmine spray for the pillow. I have been using the solo eye mask and already seeing the results. Even with the shades pulled and the covering the lights from various devices that have to remain on during the night.
I found the information below to be beneficial as well and hope if you are having the same experience it would be helpful.
- They’re cheaper than blackout curtains.
Researchers who study sleep are pretty unanimous in the assessment that the darker your room, the better your sleep. But most of us don’t live in caves, and so the only way to make your bedroom totally dark is with blackout curtains—a costly proposition if you’ve got big windows. As an alternative, you can simulate darkness by using a sleep mask to keep ambient light (or, if you’re a day-sleeper, daylight) from hitting your eyes. Blackout-style masks, like the MINDFOLDor Total Eclipse Sleep Mask, offer almost complete darkness, but even a blindfold-style mask like the Nest Bedding Luxury Sleep Maskor the Alaska Bear Sleep Mask will do a good job at blocking light.
- They improve your sleep quality.
The primary reason that those scientists say you need darkness for good sleep is actually evolutionary. Humans—and our pre-human ancestors—are naturally diurnal, meaning we’re awake during the day and sleep at night. For thousands of years before electric lights allowed us to keep working or socializing late into the evening, humans naturally slept while it was dark and were awake during the day. Our brains are hard-wired into associating darkness with sleep, and they produce more melatonin (the hormone that controls our sleep and wake cycles) when they sense an absence of light. In addition to increased melatonin production, scientists have also linked dark sleeping conditions to increased time in REM sleep and decreased wakefulness—meaning you’re more likely to sleep deeply and to sleep through the night. And they’ve found these benefits with sleep masks, not just in dark rooms.
- They might help your insomnia.
Because our brains associate darkness with sleep, it may be possible to utilize a sleep mask in muting the “noise” (stress, anxiety, excitement, etc.) in our brains that’s keeping us up at night. Sleep masks also make it impossible for you to open your eyes and look at the temptations and distractions around your room or at your alarm clock, which sleep scientist’s say should be out of sight from your sleeping position anyway.
- They’re safer than medication or alcohol.
A lot of people who have trouble sleeping use sleeping pills or self-medicate with alcohol in order to get some rest. But pharmaceutical sleeping aids—even non-prescription ones—can be habit-forming or come with side effects. (Plus, the chance of overdose is real.) And alcohol not only comes with the same risks as sleeping pills, but it also disrupts your sleep cycle and has a negative impact on the overall quality of your rest. Because sleep masks trick your brain into believing it’s time for sleep, they’re a low-risk, non-chemical alternative to more conventional sleep aids, but you may find they’re just as effective.
All the best until next time!