While winter can sometimes make us want to sleep more than usual, an improper sleep environment during the colder months can make a healthy sleep routine harder to achieve. We’ve rounded up some interesting products and strategies to help you and your customers update your sleep environments and hopefully avoid the winter blues too.
Create A Cozy Cocoon With Winter Bedding
During the winter, most people have a tendency to spend more time at home or inside, and sometimes even in bed. So, winter is a great time to improve your sleep environment and tailor it to the cold months ahead. There are a number of products that can help with this transition and make your bed the perfect seasonal nest.
- Heated Blankets & Mattress Pads
Heat therapy is a soothing way to practice self-care and remedy injuries and other ailments year round, but heated blankets and mattress pads are also a great way ensure that your bed is a haven of warmth during the darker winter months. According to Tuck, these are a few of the best heated blankets on the market right now. And, according to research conducted by Wirecutter based on interviews with engineers and safety experts, heated mattress pads (they recommend these) might be more efficient than electric blankets when it comes to keeping your bed warm. Either option should increase the cozy factor in your sleep environment.
- Flannel Sheets & Heavier Blankets Or Comforters
When choosing winter bedding, material is important. Wool and flannel offer more insulation than other types of fabrics, so looking for sheets, blankets and comforters that incorporate either material can help generate and maintain warmth in your bed. Malouf offers this flannel sheet set, while OMI offers several products that encourage heat including a wool comforter and a thermal blanket that uses certified organic cotton and is ideal for winter layering. Other brands use their own thermal blends to deliver a warmer night sleep. For example, BEDGEAR offers a blanket series that uses its unique Climacore fill in graduated levels that go from warm, warmer to warmest.
- Mattresses & Protectors Built For Seasonal Use
Some mattresses and protectors are thoughtfully made to help sleepers adjust their beds from season to season. In the case of Spring Air’s Four Seasons mattress, the product comes complete with a convenient flip and zip covering with a cooling side and a more insulated side to help consumers adjust their mattress for every season and temperature. In the way of protectors, the ReversaTemp protector from PureCare provides climate control options in the form of Heatstar fibers for warmth and FRÍO fibers for cooling.
Integrate A Space Heater
Depending on how much climate control you have where you live, you may want to incorporate a space heater into your bedroom. This strategy works if you primarily wish to heat one portion of your home and leave the rest a little chillier during the day or night. By using a space heater to concentrate warmth in a single space—perhaps the one where you spend the majority of your time—you may save on your heating bill and use a little less energy than if you keep your entire home heated all winter long.
For individuals in studio apartments and generally smaller living spaces, a space heater may be able to replace a thermostat entirely. Be sure to check and understand how your home is heated to decide if integrating a space heater would benefit you. Ensuring that your space is well insulated and that the windows are tight can also help save on energy and keep overall home environment warmer too.
Wirecutter tested, reviewed and compiled this list of top space heating recommendations.
Use A Humidifier To Add Moisture To The Air
Using a humidifier helps ease the dry chapped feeling your skin takes on when the temperature drops outside. And—depending on what type of heater you use—it can also help balance any drying out that is occurring thanks to added heat. For example, radiators produce a dry heat which can further deplete moisture in your skin and cause irritation over time—a humidifier is a great solution to this problem. Additionally, humidifiers help with sinus trouble, which can be exacerbated by dry air and can soothe colds by adding much needed moisture and purifying the air.
Wirecutter tested, reviewed and compiled this list of top humidifier recommendations.
Let The Light In
According to Psychology Today, Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a type of depression which causes people to have depressive episodes during specific times of year, impacts an estimated 10 million Americans. One way to combat the onset of SAD in the winter is to use a light therapy box or sun lamp. Less daylight during the winter can mess with our circadian rhythms, but using a light meant to simulate the sunlight of spring and summer can maintain consistency through the winter months and prevent earlier sunsets from impacting overall mood and daily routine. While those suffering from severe cases of SAD should seek out the help of a therapist, a sun lamp is a useful tool to try.
Better Homes and Gardens curated this list of top sun lamps.
Health And Wellness
Stay On Schedule
An early sunset might make you feel ready for bed much earlier in the evening than when the sun stays up until 7 or 8 pm. One strategy for avoiding this impulse is to create a schedule for your free time after work and stick to it. Developing a specific plan for your evenings, doing an activity right after work and continuing to maintain your social calendar can all help stave off the winter blues. Sometimes it’s harder to stay busy when it gets dark early, but ultimately, keeping yourself engaged can prevent you from sleeping too much.
Don’t Be Afraid To Seek Help
If you or a loved one is struggling with SAD, don’t hesitate to seek help. Everyday Health has some great information here about how to detect the signs of SAD as well as resources for sufferers.
As a consumer, furnishing your home with the right tools to stay healthy through winter is essential. And, as a retailer, stocking these tools, opening a dialogue about common health and sleep issues during the colder months and educating consumers about how to winterize their sleep environments are all great ways to build trust and offer shoppers thoughtful solutions. Many of the accessories we explored above also make practical gifts!
This article originally appeared in Sleep Retailer eNews on November 29, 2018
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