[su_dropcap style=”default” size=”3″ class=””]S[/su_dropcap]leep is a vital aspect of overall wellness, yet many people don’t see sleep as a top priority. Go Ask Alice!, the online health column of Columbia University, reports that not getting enough quality sleep is linked to “daytime sleepiness, depressed mood, impaired concentration and memory and a weakened immune system.”
So, how can we improve our quality of sleep? A step in the right direction is to consider using a sleep mask. A sleep mask, or eye mask, is a light-blocking fabric that covers the eyes and offers many benefits that contribute to a better sleep.
For instance, a sleep mask effectively blocks out sunlight, which can be a major obstacle for those who need to sleep during the daytime. Light and darkness tell the body when it’s time to rest and when it’s time to be active, but sometimes our routine requires us to sleep when our body thinks it’s time to be active. Whether one is preparing for a nightshift or taking a 20-minute power nap, a sleep mask can ensure that the sun won’t be a disturbance.
Sunlight, however, is not the only light that can disrupt sleep. Alarm clocks, passing cars and hallway lights can send a message to the brain that it’s time to wake-up. These lights can pull someone out of his or her sleep cycle and consequently damage the quality of sleep.
Furthermore, a 2010 study published in the U.S. National Library of Medicine tested the effects of a sleep mask on ICU patients and found that the sleep masks blocked out light, promoted healthy sleep and increased nocturnal melatonin levels. Melatonin is a hormone produced by the brain that regulates the body’s sleep-wake cycles; its production is signaled by darkness.
With all of these benefits in mind, consider improving your quality of sleep by using a sleep mask. Check out SleepSwag to find the sleep mask that best suits you. Not only will you be able to sleep in style, but you’ll also wake up feeling refreshed and ready to go!