Goodbye Insomnia, Hello Sleep!

Deep, restorative sleep is essential to our well-being – and yet for so many people, the nighttime is a long and frustrating period of lying awake.

A Statistics Canada report concluded that as many as 3.3 million Canadians aged 15 years and older have trouble getting to sleep and staying asleep. Insomnia afflicts one in every seven people and 18 per cent of them report less than five hours of sleep per night.

Is this your experience sometimes, or all the time?

“If it happens too often, a big improvement may be yours with just a few lifestyle changes,” says Sue Rainville, director of marketing for Hunter Douglas. “And today, there are also some innovative furnishings and fixtures to promote better sleep such as light- and noise-blocking solutions. All our window treatments, for instance, provide a measure of light control but some products offer more room-darkening benefits than others, so be sure to ask.”

A key consideration in coverings, says Rainville, is the fabric or material type and colour. Sheer fabrics typically soften and filter sunlight, while semi-opaque and opaque versions almost completely block it out.

And for better sleep, she says, pay attention to this:

Bedtime Schedule: Go to bed at the same time and rise at the same time to establish a consistent sleep-wake cycle. Soon you’ll find yourself waking up naturally without an alarm clock.

The Bed: If you wake up with a sore back or aching neck, chances are you need to invest in a new mattress or try a different pillow. You may also be inadvertently sabotaging your sleep cycle if you work in bed before turning out the light. The brain may resist the switch from work to sleep.

Light: The best window treatments are those that dim exterior light. The Duette Architella line, for example, features opaque honeycomb shades designed to significantly reduce heat transfer at the window and serve as an excellent light-dimming tool. The darker the room, the better you’ll sleep.

Eating and Drinking Habits: Big meals at night take a lot of work to digest keeping you awake, whereas a light snack may promote sleep. And, with fluids like coffee, did you know that the effects of caffeine can cause sleep problems up to 10 hours after your last drop? Switch to caffeine-free beverages instead.

Silence: Noise is one of the most disruptive factors and has a way of easily infiltrating our private spaces. Ask about sound-absorbing window treatments, like the popular Vignette Modern Roman Shades, designed with rear fabric air pockets to trap and absorb sound energy. Additional information is available at

Source: (NC)