How To Improve Your Air Quality For A Better Night’s Sleep
How to Improve Your Air Quality for Better Sleep
Of all the rooms in your house, the bedroom is where you want the cleanest air. After all, it’s where you spend nearly one-third of your life. In the modern world, some chemicals regularly find their way into the home. Cleaning and purifying the air in your bedroom can help you get better, more restful sleep.
Air Quality and Sleep
High-quality sleep is vital for a healthy immune system, appetite and metabolism control, and controlling stress levels amongst other bodily functions. Cleaner air leads to better sleep.
Air that is free of impurities helps enable good decisions, thinking critically, and solving complex problems. A study comparing mental performance after sleeping in a room with clean versus air with more carbon dioxide found that people sleeping in the fresher air had improved test results.
Participants also reported feeling well rested with better concentration.
Cleaning the Air and Reducing Emissions
You can improve the air quality of your bedroom in a number of different ways. Some are simple like opening the windows for better ventilation while others require doing some research and making sure you have the right products in your home.
The mattress is where you will spend the vast majority of your time while in the bedroom. However, some mattresses emit gases due to chemical flame retardants.
There are independent organizations that test and monitor mattresses for volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and harmful chemicals like polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), which were often used in flame retardants.
These certifications make sure the bed does not exceed certain emission levels. Other certifications include CertiPur-USⓇ, which identifies foam mattresses with low VOC emissions.
To prevent emissions built up during shipping and packaging, air out a new mattress somewhere other than your bedroom for about 24 hours. Open the windows and doors in your “airing out” room to release the gases outside where they can dissipate. Trust your nose. After 24 hours, if the mattress still has a strong odor, let it air out longer.
Keep It Clean and Safe
Try to avoid using solvent-based cleaners, especially those with strong fragrances. A strong odor often indicates chemical emissions. Home improvement projects like paint stripping, soldering, gluing, and sanding can release particles into the air. Smoking also releases thousands of indoor pollutants that can be inhaled while you sleep.
If you’ve used cleaners, done home improvement projects, or smoked, you need to make sure you’ve properly ventilated the room afterward.
Proper ventilation can help keep the air in your bedroom clean. If possible, regularly open windows and doors to circulate the air throughout your house. A ceiling fan can also help get the air moving. During the summer months, you can use a box fan to either push or pull air into the bedroom. You should also regularly check mechanical filters to make sure that allergens and other pollutants are being properly removed.
Know What’s in Your Home
Check labels on products for low emissions before bringing them into your home. They should have a certification from a third party validating any claims of low “VOCs” or “no emissions.” Sheets, pillowcases, curtains, and other textiles made of organic materials can also help reduce exposure to chemicals.
When it comes to better air quality, awareness is the first step. When followed by action, you can breathe deeply and know you’re going to get better, healthier sleep.
About the author:
Samantha (Sam) Kent is a researcher for SleepHelp.org. Her favorite writing topic is how getting enough sleep can improve your life. Currently residing in Boise, Idaho, she sleeps in a California King bed, often with a cat on her face.