A few nights ago, I spent the night at Chelsea’s house for the first time. My roommate was celebrating her birthday and I was expecting things to get crowded and loud, so I made the decision to spend the night elsewhere, in hopes that maybe I would get some sleep.
Before you all get your hopes up for a dirty story, let me inform you that nothing happened, and I truly did go to her house to spend time with her and SLEEP.
She forewarned me that her mattress was quite firm, but I must say that it was actually very comfortable. I would even say that I am open to transition to a firmer mattress because when you’re sleeping with someone else, you’re less likely to both end up in the sometimes uncomfortable valley of the mattress.
It turns out that I sleep just the same with her as I do when I’m by myself. Waking up is, of course, much more enjoyable because her lovely face is just inches from my own.
Things are going well, ya’ll.
I live in Atlanta- it is loud as fuck at 2am. I am right next to the highway and a train station. I hear cars, train horns, sirens, people yelling, and yes, sometimes the occasional gunshots. It’s fine. However, when you take all of that and add a roommate who comes in at 12am with her friend, the noise is no longer just coming from the outside.
This is how I began soundproofing my room so that I could get a better night’s sleep:
- I added weatherstripping to my door because there were very large gaps between the bottom of the door and the floor, as well as on the sides.
- I hung up 2 tapestries and am in the middle of figuring out how to hang a heavy 4×6 carpet on the wall that is opposite to the living room/TV.
- I have carpets on my floor for sound insulation from music or talking on the inside of my room.
- I bought blackout/sound blocking curtains to lessen the noise I hear from the outside world and to block the porch light that comes on every time my roommate’s friend visits at 12am.
- In addition to all of this, I also wear earplugs AND use a white noise machine that I can hear through my earplugs.
I wanted to buy foam boards to put on my wall, but it’s quite expensive, so I’m working with what I’ve got. We’ll see if this does anything. Last night was actually the first night that I didn’t wake up more than 3-4 times. I’m hoping that hanging that carpet will do the final trick.
I started having issues sleeping right around the same time my anxiety and panic attacks revealed themselves (about 10-12 years ago).
With that being said, bad sleep/insomnia also runs on my mom’s side of the family. My mother does not sleep well and neither does her mother.
For me, the issue doesn’t seem to be falling asleep. In fact, that happens quite quickly sometimes. However, I wake up multiple times throughout the night. This leaves me feeling frustrated and exhausted when I have to get up for work.
I actually function quite well and don’t feel much of a drain throughout the day, but it’s annoying not sleeping completely through the night.
What have I done to combat my sleeping issues? Let me list them for you.
- Weighted blanket- I don’t actually know if this makes a huge difference, but I love it. I love the weight and warmth. It was one of my best purchases.
- Cooler room temp- This has helped the most.
- Noise machine set on white noise- I would like to note that I wear earplugs at night AND I still have the noise machine on because I can hear it through my plugs and still reap some of the benefits (it drowns out the other sounds in my house like my roommate getting off of work at 2am)
- Ear plugs- Happy Ears. Buy Them. Now. They Are Amazing.– I spent years going through a multitude of earplugs ranging from foam to wax to this silicone version and I’ve made my choice.
- I find that taking a hot shower (just body, no hair washing) right before I go to sleep is nice.
- I stop drinking liquids at 7pm so I only get up once to use the bathroom during the night.
- I sleep in complete darkness.
- I have made my bedtime 9pm every single night whether it’s a weekday or weekend.
I’ve never actually been diagnosed with insomnia, but I’ve also never asked my doctor about it because it seemed normal to me. I will probably ask my doctor about further options the next time I visit just to get that professional opinion, but I don’t see much changing.