Sleep Better by Making These Adjustments to Your Bedroom

According to Dr. Rachel Salas of John Hopkins University, making a few simple adjustments to how your bedroom is arranged can yield better sleep.

According to Dr. Rachel Salas of John Hopkins University, making a few simple adjustments to how your bedroom is arranged can yield better sleep. The associate professor of neurology has some tips that may be familiar, such as limiting the amount of ambient light, and some that may prove controversial — at least to diehard pet lovers. So let's take a look.


Whether it comes from smartphone screens or a streetlamp outside your window, light is the enemy of sleep: the more there is, the harder it will be to fall asleep easily. Salas recommends blackout curtains, removing TV or other electronic screens with stimulating blue light, and reducing the intensity of your alarm clock light.

Need to get up in the middle of the night? The more lights you turn on to get to the bathroom, the more difficulty you'll have falling back asleep. Salas recommends keeping a flashlight on your nightstand so you can activate only the light you need, and return to sleep more easily.

Deepak Chopra, everyone's favorite whipping boy for pseudoscience crimes (really he just has a flair for metaphor), made similar suggestions when he stopped by Big Think.

So far, Salas's suggestions may seem pretty intuitive. But the hidden world of sleep is large, and the science underpinning our knowledge of sleep is easy to misunderstand. 

While managing allergic reactions may not top your list of "sleep better" priorities, subtle disruptions to sleep can really add up over time. That's why Salas recommends replacing your mattress every 10 years, your pillows every 2 years, and keeping your pet's bed down the hallway — or at the very least, keep them out of your bed while you sleep.

We know that's a hard one for people who really love sleeping with their pets, but your mental and physical health may in part depend on it. 

Johns Hopkins Medicine: Your Bedroom for Better Sleep

--

How to make a black hole

Here's the science of black holes, from supermassive monsters to ones the size of ping-pong balls.

Videos
  • There's more than one way to make a black hole, says NASA's Michelle Thaller. They're not always formed from dead stars. For example, there are teeny tiny black holes all around us, the result of high-energy cosmic rays slamming into our atmosphere with enough force to cram matter together so densely that no light can escape.
  • CERN is trying to create artificial black holes right now, but don't worry, it's not dangerous. Scientists there are attempting to smash two particles together with such intensity that it creates a black hole that would live for just a millionth of a second.
  • Thaller uses a brilliant analogy involving a rubber sheet, a marble, and an elephant to explain why different black holes have varying densities. Watch and learn!
  • Bonus fact: If the Earth became a black hole, it would be crushed to the size of a ping-pong ball.

Russian reporters discover 101 'tortured' whales jammed in offshore pens

Protected animals are feared to be headed for the black market.

(VL.ru)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Russian news network discovers 101 black-market whales.
  • Orcas and belugas are seen crammed into tiny pens.
  • Marine parks continue to create a high-price demand for illegal captures.
Keep reading Show less

China’s artificial sun reaches fusion temperature: 100 million degrees

In a breakthrough for nuclear fusion research, scientists at China's Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) reactor have produced temperatures necessary for nuclear fusion on Earth.

Credit: EAST Team
Surprising Science
  • The EAST reactor was able to heat hydrogen to temperatures exceeding 100 million degrees Celsius.
  • Nuclear fusion could someday provide the planet with a virtually limitless supply of clean energy.
  • Still, scientists have many other obstacles to pass before fusion technology becomes a viable energy source.
Keep reading Show less