There’s nothing worse than knowing you need to sleep but not being able to switch off.
As the hours of shut-eye you’ll be able to get start to dwindle, just about every possible hindrance to you falling to sleep feels more and more intense – as if your mind, body and bedroom are working together to give you the worst dark circles of your life.
One of the main issues can be that sneaky bit of light that seeps through the cracks of our blinds, or under the curtains, which can prevent our bodies from registering that it’s time to sleep.
‘One of the main influences on our sleep is light and darkness,’ sleep expert Rosey Davidson tells Metro.co.uk.
‘Our circadian rhythm, or our internal body clock, is directly influenced by daylight and on the onset of darkness.’
One of the hormones that regulates our body clock and causes us to feel sleepy is melatonin, which starts to develop around two hours before bedtime.
‘If the lights don’t start to dim, this process will be delayed,’ explains Davidson.
This is especially prevalent during the summer months, when the sun begins to rise earlier and set later.
The benefits of blackout blinds
Blackout blinds are an option for people wanting to limit the amount of light that gets into their bedrooms, both before bed and in the early hours of the morning.
‘Some of us are more sensitive to light exposure than others, and for those who struggle to sleep, it can be transformative to properly black out your bedroom,’ says Davidson.
‘Not only does darkness help with the release of melatonin, but it helps us switch off and relax,’ she continues, adding that blackout blinds would be particularly helpful for children and early-risers who need to sleep before the sun goes down.
‘Having black out blinds is also very useful for those who live in urban areas with street lights outside, or even when there is a full moon,’ she adds.
They also help us to stay asleep.
‘If we get up during the night, we should try to keep things as dark as possible, to protect our night sleep,’ explains Davidson, as light signals to our brain that it’s time to wake up – which is also why blackout blinds can prevent us from waking up prematurely.
‘The sun coming up in the morning is also a signal to our brains that it is time to get up and start the day, so for early riser’s black out blinds can be a simple fix,’ says Davidson.
‘For children and babies, who often wake earlier than we would like, it is imperative to keep their rooms dark.’
Try these blackout blinds for a good night’s sleep
Are you sold?
Blackout blinds sure beat hanging any blanket you can find over your blinds to block out the light – often to no avail.
Blackout blinds aren’t as pricey as you’d expect, especially considering the myriad benefits they bring, and investing in your sleep is a no-brainer.
Blackout blinds to buy for the perfect sleep
Amazon Basics Blackout Rollo Blind (variety of sizes)
Buy now from Amazon for £15.15 – £23.24
Habitat Plain Velvet Blackout Roman Blind in Navy Blue (3ft)
Buy now from Argos for £30
Dunelm Black Blackout Roller Blind (variety of sizes)
Buy now from Dunlem for £8 – £20
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