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The 5 Senses of Sleep

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When it comes to your nighttime routine, you've got to take care of all five of your senses to ensure your body can peacefully drift to sleep each night. Catering to each of these senses can contribute to deeper and more relaxing sleep, but which methods are most effective?

Keep the following tips in mind next time you're altering your sleep environment to appease your senses.

Learn how to appeal to all five senses for the best sleep. Learn how to appeal to all five senses for the best sleep.

It goes without saying, but darker rooms are much easier to fall asleep in. Scientists liken this to our internal clocks - as the lights begin to dim, our bodies release the sleep hormone melatonin. While you may not be able to control when the sun sets, you can try the following to please your eyes at night:

  • Wear an eye mask 
  • Shut off any electronics
  • Sleep away from your phone

Studies have linked aromatherapy to faster healing, improved relaxation and - you guessed it - better sleep. Certain scents can drastically improve one's likelihood of falling asleep at night. According to a study conducted by the National Sleep Foundation, fresh smells can help one fall asleep. More than 53 percent of survey respondents indicated that sleeping on sheets with a fresh scent was imperative for the best sleep possible. 

"53 percent of people sleep better on fresh sheets."

Comfortable bedding, cooler temperatures and mattress texture can be the difference between sleeping soundly and tossing and turning. Scientists have found that cooler temperatures are ideal for the nighttime, but warm pajamas and heated blankets are ideal for preventing shivers during the night. Brush up on how your body temperature changes overnight if you're trying to understand why your body is so sensitive to external factors.

Most people can't fall asleep with blaring horns or noisy construction outside their windows, but a little music may be necessary for helping them drift off at night. Preferences shift by the person, but according to science, soothing sounds can help you fall asleep at night. These may include white or ambient noises, or relaxing music with silky tones. Other sounds can drastically interrupt your sleep cycle, including loud televisions, snoring partners or hustling roommates.

Certain tastes may not be able to lull you to bed each night, but researchers have found that bad or lingering tastes can make people uncomfortable and rouse them during the night. If you're concerned that a strong taste will keep you up or ruin your evening, try keeping peppermint or dark chocolate next to your bed to cleanse your palate.