Some Ways to Sleep in Your New Home!
After finally completing the harrowing process of moving, all you’ll probably want to do at the end of the day is settle in your new bedroom for some serious ZZZ’s. But just as you start to doze off you hear a strange noise—not an intruder, but a house sound. It’s weird and unfamiliar. Plus, you can’t turn your brain off, and it keeps wandering over your to-do list.
Adjusting to a new environment takes time, but there are some tricks you can try to settle down in your new home for a good night’s sleep (with no Ambien required).
Tip No. 1: Listen to some tunes
Music can help put your mind at ease. But you need to choose the right type of music to help you fall asleep—and we don’t just mean classical or New Age.
“What you want is a melody with consistency, from beginning to end,” says Michael Tyrrell, a music therapist. “Instrumental music—sans lyrics, drums, and crescendos—works best.”
Tyrrell recommends playing the music on a loop all night at a low volume. Also, avoid using earbuds, which can (and almost certainly will) fall out.
Tip No. 2: Soundproof your windows
If unwanted noise is a problem, replacing single-pane windows with double- or triple-pane glass can be worth it, but you’ll probably want to hire a pro.
“Window installation involves a certain level of expertise that is way more advanced than your typical home improvement project,” says Lowe’s spokesman Matt Michaels.
If you’re not ready for a complete window overhaul, you can always make some tweaks to your existing windows.
“Replace worn-out weatherstripping, recaulk areas where the caulk has eroded, install storm windows on the outside of the house, and spray a foam insulation where seals aren’t tight,” Michaels advises.
Tip No. 3: Absorb ambient sounds
Sound echoes, so to quell those noises inside your house that are keeping you up at night, celebrity home stager Tori Toth recommends filling your home with accessories that will prevent noise from traveling.
“Hang heavy draperies around the windows or on your walls, and add plush rugs to absorb the sound,” she says.
Vinyl, fiberglass, and wood also have noise-canceling properties, Michaels adds.
Tip No. 4: Turn on a fan
Try blocking unwanted sound by adding your own more familiar sound.
“Even when we sleep, our subconscious mind needs to tune in to something,” says Tyrrell. “If we give our subconscious mind a viable pleasing signal, it is easier to achieve REM sleep.”
It’s white noise, and can come in the form of the motor of a portable fan (that whirring sound is steady and soothing), or even the fan on your air conditioning or heating unit.
“Sometimes, even a familiar distraction from the quiet proves beneficial,” says Tyrrell.
Tip No. 5: Rearrange the furniture
It’s possible to achieve sounder sleep by rearranging your furniture. As obvious as it may seem, sometimes the key to falling asleep is moving your bed far away from the noise.
“Determine where the noise is coming from, then move your bed or couch on the opposite wall,” suggests Toth. “Also try putting furniture on a load-bearing wall, and avoid putting your bed near windows if you live on a busy street.”
Tip No. 6: Throw some shade
Too much light, whether from the morning sun or a nearby street lamp, can disrupt your sleep. The easiest fix is to add some blinds or blackout curtains to your windows. Companies such as Lowe’s offer handy Window Treatments Worksheets to help you record the measurements and additional notes for your windows. You can take these worksheets to the store and find shades or window treatments to fit your needs. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to install, shut out the light, and doze.
Tip No. 7: Focus on water
A dripping faucet is its own special type of sleep-depriving torture, but a Zen indoor fountain or another waterfall installation can provide the soothing sound of running water, Toth says.
“Another option is to adopt some fish and get a fish tank that will filter the water,” she adds. These noises can become a tranquilizing distraction in any environment.
Tip No. 8: Use a sound machine
Simulate the calming sounds of waves, wind, or white noise to mask the ruckus. There are a variety of machines on the market, ranging from inexpensive models like the Conair Sound Therapy Dream Tones (Amazon, $16.95) to the pricey Sound+Sleep model (Amazon, $99.95). The National Sleep Foundation actually recommends the Dohm by Marpac (marpac.com, $49.95), which provides the soothing sound of rushing air to help block ambient noise.
The foundation says noise machines work by reducing the difference between background sounds and a “peak” sound, like a door slamming or a dog barking, giving you a better chance to sleep through it undisturbed.
Tip No. 9: If all else fails, plug it
Earplugs can actually help; while you sleep, the brain continues to register and process sounds. Make sure to find ones that fit your ear without falling out.
Bottom line: Find the best method as soon as possible, because sleep deprivation can quickly ruin positive feelings about your new home. Now, go to bed already!