White noise, the secret to your best sleep?
Experts recommend reducing noise in your sleep environment to improve sleep quality. This may mean removing your phone from the bedroom and installing heavy carpet or curtains to help absorb any noise. Of course, some people sleep best in absolute silence. But if a quiet room isn’t helping you at night, investing in a sound machine or simply turning on a fan could be the ticket to a good night’s sleep.
Here’s the thing about sleep and sound: while the wrong noises (like your neighbour’s barking dog or your partner’s snoring) can keep you up at night, other sounds – such as crashing waves or the hum of an air conditioner – can lull you into dreamland. And certain sounds, like falling rain, can improve the quality of your slumber.
A white noise machine will help to muffle sound in your sleep environment. White noise helps to mask noise-related disruptions by creating a constant ambient sound that makes a loud noise, like a door slamming, less of a contrast. And that makes you less likely to be startled awake. You can invest in a specially designed white noise machine to help lull you to sleep, or you could try using everyday items from the surrounding environment. Ordinary household machines like air conditioners, electric fans, and even washing machines produce ambient sound that can muffle external noises.
Nature produces some of the best soothing white noises: falling rain, the waves gently crashing on the beach, birds chirping, the flow of a river or stream. If you’re not nearby to these natural sources, try a nature soundtrack. Background soundscapes, such as the sound of the inside of an aircraft, a crackling campfire, steady crowd noise, even urban soundbites such as passing cars, can also help to muffle environmental noise or fill the silence.
Just like different people respond differently to sounds while they sleep, the right type of white noise for you is a matter of personal preference. Try it tonight. You might find that a little white noise is the secret to your best sleep.