By Megan Slack
The art of combining style and practicality is important in every room of the home, but none more so than the bedroom. This space is often subject to fashionable color schemes and interior design trends – but as designer Martin Waller reveals – your bedroom lighting ideas may be impacting your sleep.
According to the Andrew Martin founder, your ceiling light (or, more specifically, how you use your ceiling light) may be preventing you from having a good night's sleep – and science agrees.
'Turning off ceiling lights in the evenings in favor of floor and table lamps will help to create a soft and relaxing space for you to unwind in,' Martin explains.
Instead, he suggests using 'clever combinations of lamps to mimic patterns of daylight throughout your home,' as this will reinforce our circadian rhythms (the sleep-wake cycle).
The designer also suggests emphasizing any natural light to 'improve our productivity and overall mood.' His favorite light-accentuating tricks involve using 'plenty of mirrors and glass or polished surfaces to bounce light around the room.'
However, Martin's argument is not exclusive to the interior design world. Dr. Lindsay Browning, psychologist, neuroscientist, and sleep expert for And So To Bed, also reinforces the designer's suggestion to dim your ceiling lamp – and opt for a bedside lamp that will promote a better night's sleep.
'Bright light suppresses the production of melatonin which is our sleep hormone. The ceiling light is usually the brightest form of lighting in a room, hence often being referred to as the 'big light,' and with the job of lighting the whole room, people often opt for a brighter bulb too, causing a less effective environment for sleep,' Dr. Lindsay explains.
'Lamps, however, generally emit less light and are able to offer a dimmer light source, helping your body know it is time for bed- avoiding bright light in the evening is key,' she adds in the discussion of her modern bedroom ideas.
Dr. Lindsay also suggests choosing a warmer light instead of cooler shades that contain a blue-light spectrum of light – as these convince our body it is daytime – even when night falls. 'This is also the reason why using phones before bed is detrimental to our sleep as they also emit blue light,' she adds.
And, light fixtures aside, it is important to find the best mattress for you – whether you are looking to prioritize temperature control or the right zoned support. It's the tip that might just transform your sleeping pattern for good.
Megan is a News Writer across Future Plc's Homes titles. She has a background in national newspapers in the UK and has experience in fashion and travel journalism, which she previously practised whilst living in Paris and New York City. Her adoration for these fashion capitals means she particularly loves writing about contemporary styles and trends for Livingetc.
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