Your head hits the pillow and a smile naturally curves across your face. You’ve been waiting for this moment all day… bedtime. Sleep recharges your body and is essential for functions such as muscle repair, memory and focus. Rest at the end of a busy day feels like all you’ve ever wanted.
But then, your roommate coughs. Or you hear a creak in the hallway. Or the bass booming from the party next door is creeping through the walls and right in to your bedroom. If you’re a light sleeper, kiss those z’s goodbye. With such sensitivity to sound or light, the slightest shift in surroundings can disturb you. Valley sought out solutions for the light sleeper.
“I am a very light sleeper,” junior Emily Cunkelman says. “Something that I have found that works for me is sleeping with a fan on.”
Running a fan creates a constant hum that drowns out the little noises disturbing a light sleeper. Pointing the fan away from your bed helps ease the draft in colder months. If a fan doesn’t do the trick, you can purchase a white-noise machine that creates like rain fall or ocean waves. White-noise machines can be purchased for as low as $15.
If your dwelling is in a particularly loud area of town, or your roommates never understood the concept of “inside voices”, ear plugs are the solution. A few considerations must be made to find the perfect set of ear plugs.
Comfort is key. The goal is to find a pair that feels good in your ears while staying in place regardless of how much you toss and turn. The earplugs should also be durable enough to be cleaned frequently with mild soap and warm water. Reusable earplugs must be washed and replaced when needed to prevent bacteria from coming in contact with the inner ear.
For light sleepers plagued by light sensitivity, a sleeping mask can be worn. Darkness helps the brain create the sleep hormone melatonin.
“Personally, I fall asleep better when it’s pitch black,” junior Amanda Macedo says. “The one I have is comfortable because the side on my eyes is lined with fleece. It covers my line of vision so no light bothers me.”
Macedo also says the sleeping mask keeps her eyes closed and helps her drift to sleep on nights she has trouble getting relaxed.
Sound and light disturb natural sleep cycles. Even if you are not fully woken by bumps in the night, these remedies can help the lightest of sleepers get the deep rest they need.