Getting a good night’s sleep is incredibly important to our health and well-being. Too much screen time, stress and balmy weather are common factors known for keeping us awake at night. But, did you know the colour of your bedding may also be a culprit?
Nothing beats snuggling into freshly laundered clean sheets at the end of a hard day. Crisp white bedding might seem like the perfect match for your best mattress and able to go with any bedroom ideas. But, sleep experts argue that white bedding could be preventing you from getting a quality eight hours of sleep.
‘When it comes to sheets, shades in the yellow, orange, red and black families are best, but stay away from whites and [bright] blues,’ says Dorothy Chambers from Sleep Junkie.
Why do white sheets affect our sleep?
Via the Sleep Junkie sleep science review programme, more than 1000 adults were surveyed to explore the impact bedroom arrangement and colour has on sleep quality. ‘It is thought these colours [white and bright blue] might affect your melatonin levels’ Dorothy explains.
Melatonin is a hormone that naturally occurs in the body that controls our sleep patterns. Production of the melatonin makes you fall asleep quicker and less likely to wake up during the night.
To understand the findings further, the science behind the effect is down to light rather than colour. The National Library of Medicine states that being exposed to bright blue and white light affects our Circadian Rhythms. These are the 24hr cycles that help our bodies carry out essential functions.
During the day, bright light can improve our performance and attention. But being exposed to blue and white at night can trick our bodies into thinking it is still daytime. That leads to suppressing the body’s release of melatonin.
So, it makes sense that crisp white bed linen that reflects the most light would keep us awake after sunset rather than restful.
What colour of bed linen is the best sleep aid?
Perfect bedroom colour schemes always come down to personal taste. But, there are a few specific hues that are said to help us wind down faster than others.
Chambers continues ‘Studies suggest that neutral colours are best for a bedroom because they provide a calming and relaxing vibe, as loud and harsh colours can distract and even irritate your eyes while you try to settle in for the night.’
Christine Lapp from Sleep Junkie agrees. ‘According to where they lie on the colour wheel, all shades of colour can induce certain moods and feelings in humans.’
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