How to Sleep Better by Getting Back To Nature
Modern electricity is something we take for granted. It lets us have and do so much, but there is one subtle and negative effect it can have on our health. Something some people are more sensitive to than other people.
Artificial light interferes with our body’s ability to sink into a restful sleep by disrupting our natural circadian rhythms. As someone who has suffered from sleep problems all my life, I have discovered that I am in fact quite sensitive to the effects of light and dark.
If you want to know how to sleep better, start with addressing this basic biological response to light.
- Make sure that the lights in your home begin to dim in the evening. This includes TVs and computer screens!
- Use dimmer switches on as many lights as possible. You can also turn the light down on your computer screens in the evening ( I found this one thing very important.)
- Imagine that you are trying to simulate, as much as you can, the natural shift from daytime to nighttime within your home, so that you are mimicking the gradual change of light at dusk into night.
These simple changes can help to trigger your body’s natural sleep cycle for you and your children. Light and dark are the triggers to the hormones in the brain that induce sleep. Artificial lights mess up these signals!
Artificial lights to avoid:
- Turn down or off all media screens (dim screens at night, turn off TV’s after 8pm.)
- Dim indoor house lights (reduce the number of lights on, put lights with dimmer switches.)
- Avoid going to brightly lit stores in the evening particularly close to bedtime.
Good light habits:
- Be outside for at least 20 minutes during the early part of the day for maximum light.
- Be outside at dusk to get the shift from light to dark.
If you need to learn how to sleep better, getting back to how nature intended us humans to know it’s bedtime is the foundation to better sleep.
Mari is a licensed practitioner of Chinese medicine, a singer/songwriter and the creator of Mamashine. She is also a survivor of postpartum depression. Mari lives with her energetic son, her husband and various animals in Austin, TX.