Our bodies must rest and recharge in order to keep operating at full capacity. It doesn’t really matter whether we like this or not, there are many important and necessary processes of regeneration that happen at night and this is what good night’s sleep serves for.
How does our modern lifestyle affect our sleep?
For many people, it is completely irrelevant when they go to bed, when they work and when they turn off the lights. Are you glued to your phone or laptop right until you hit the pillow (and maybe even after)? Or maybe, even with the best intentions, streetlights and city lights flood your bedroom. What we all need to understand is that darkness is a necessity for our beauty sleep.
What are the benefits of sleeping in complete darkness.
Still think beauty sleep is just for your good looks? At night our bodies produce melatonin, which allows us to fall asleep, and stay asleep. We produce this hormone the most between 11pm and 3am, and even the slightest ray of sunlight or artificial light interrupts the secretion of this important hormone. Less melatonin in the blood causes fatigue, bad mood, anxiety, hormonal imbalance, poor concentration and many other problems.
Melatonin supports the immune system and protects us from ailments such as heart attacks triggered by stress, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease, and many other neurological damages and bacterial and viral infections. When you sleep in complete darkness you can expect your levels of melatonin to increase. Proper and regular secretion of this hormone will even slow down the aging process.
How to create complete darkness
We should accept the fact that we are living in a bright world, which means that we need to take some measures to create darkness. For instance, we can turn off the TV and put down our phones well before bedtime and most importantly wear an eye mask to sleep. High-quality eye masks like can provide complete darkness for you to sleep better, no matter where you sleep.
First, we’ll go over why using artificial lighting too close to bed can damage your health. Melatonin helps us to relax and get ready to sleep, but the blue light from smartphones and tablets actually suppresses this hormone. Melatonin lowers blood pressure, glucose levels, and body temperature, which help us to prepare for a restful sleep.
With the proper amount of melatonin in your system, your cortisol levels will also remain relatively low, allowing you to relax and get to sleep. However, artificial lighting actually raises your stress hormones at night, and frequent exposure can cause a plethora of health problems, including excess body fat, weight gain, inflammation, insulin resistance, and heart problems. It can also contribute to insomnia and even affect hormones responsible for the regulation of your appetite.
So, by keeping your room dark at night, you not only will get to sleep faster and wake up feeling more rested, but you’ll also have a lesser risk of developing health problems due to excess nighttime light exposure.
A good rule of thumb is to simply turn off electronics a few hours before bed, and dim the lights in your room. Make it a relaxing environment for sleep so that when bedtime comes, you actually feel like falling asleep.
Even dim light at night can causes issues, though. Chronic exposure to dim light in the evening leads to depressive symptoms in hamsters, such as drinking less sugar water that they normally would have interest in. When researchers took away the dim lights at night, they found the depression went away.
If you have night lights on, lights from your computer or phone, or even a street lamp outside, consider covering them with a blanket or getting black-out curtains for your windows.
DrapeStyle can help by making custom drapes or curtains featuring blackout lining. Our high quality blackout lining, made by Hanes, can block out 99% of the light. Let us make custom drapes for you, with your choice of fabric, pleat style, and lining. Using curtains and drapes with blackout effects and help you obtain better sleep. Contact us for more information or to order fabric samples.