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Why are Sleep Eye Masks Good for You?

Posted by Mitch cullen on

You may have heard that sleep masks are good for you, but why are sleep eye masks good for you?

In this article we will give you a list of reasons why sleep eye masks are good for you. 

Sleep Eye Masks Improve Your Sleep Quality 

Melatonin is the sleep hormone in your brain, it makes you tired. When it is dark your body converts your serotonin into melatonin, helping you sleep. 

When you are exposed to light, your body converts the melatonin in your brain back into serotonin, waking you up.

Even the smallest amount of light can interfere with this process, making it difficult to sleep, especially during the day. 

Because even the smallest amount of light has been found to affect this process, a sleep mask can help you sleep better by blocking out light, even if you think your room is already dark. 

Because even the smallest amount of light can affect this process, we also suggest investing in a good contoured sleep mask that blocks out all light, not a cheap sleep mask that lets light in around the sides and nose area.

Sleep Masks Can Reduce Distractions

Your technology and toys can distract you and keep you awake at night with blue light. 

It's tempting to look at your phone to check what time it is when you're having difficulties falling asleep, only to end up browsing through your social media account for the next hour. 

Sleep masks prevent you from opening your eyes, looking around your room and spotting a tempting distraction.

Building on the last tip about sleep masks and your brain converting melatonin to serotonin when it’s dark, a neat trick I find to fall asleep easily with a sleep mask, is to wear the sleep mask and open your eyes. 

This will trick your brain into thinking it’s dark, which should help increase the melatonin production. It also calms your mind as there is absolutely nothing to look at even though your eyes are open.

This trick works best if you have an eye mask that allows you to open and move your eyes freely while you are wearing it.

Sleep Masks can be Good for your Skin

Recent studies discovered that not getting enough sleep is linked to more fine lines and wrinkles around the face. 

But not getting enough sleep isn't the only reason you might get wrinkles. 

According to Dr. Brazzini, a dermatologist at Marylebone Clinic, we can also get wrinkles from the way we move our face while we sleep. 

If you lie down on your stomach or side, your skin and pillowcase are touching. When you move in your sleep, they rub on each other, which can cause the collagen in your skin to break down. 

If you sleep on your side or stomach and are worried about your skin, a sleep mask can be used to protect the sensitive skin, especially around your eye area, where wrinkles appear. 

The sleep mask acts as a barrier between your skin and the pillow, protecting your skin from rubbing on the pillowcase and causing collagen breakdown. 

We suggest using a silk sleep mask if you are concerned about your skin.

Our silk sleep mask also has the 100% blockout, and ability to move your eyes freely, that tie in with the previous 2 reasons why a sleep eye mask is good for you.

Sleep Masks can Relieve Headaches

The most common sign of chronic migraines is sensitivity to light.

Anyone who has experienced migraines knows that they can be terrible in the middle of the day when it's tough to locate a dark room to rest, especially in tropical countries such as Australia, where sunlight is harsh. 

A sleep eye mask can give you the break from harsh light that you need. If you don’t have a dark room you can go to and rest, you can quickly and easily relieve an approaching migraine with a sleep mask instead.

Sleep Masks can Prevent Dry Eyes

When you sleep with the air-condition on, it can make your eyes feel dry and irritated when you wake up. 

An air purifier can help your space feel more balanced by adding moisture back into the air. But air purifiers can be expensive and require a lot of care to maintain and clean. 

Even though a sleep mask can't add moisture to your home, it can help the hydration around your eyes accumulate, keeping them moisturised. It can also keep dust and allergens out of them.

Sleep Masks are Convenient for Travel

Sleep eye masks are excellent for people who want to sleep, especially on planes or while traveling. They are also great for office workers who want to take a nap on their break. They pair well with travel neck pillows for the best possible sleep on flights. 

Going to sleep quickly in a dark room with your preferred pillow is one thing, but it's not always possible, especially while traveling. 

Leaving your usual comforts behind can make it hard to sleep, and it isn't just because your hotel room isn’t dark and the beds rock hard. 

The Sleep Foundation says that when you are away from home your body goes into "nocturnal alert" mode, which makes it more challenging to sleep.

So while a sleep mask can be good for you if your hotel room is too bright, you want to sleep during your flight without being woken up or take nap at the office, a sleep eye mask is also good for you as it can help create comfort and familiarity, reducing the impact “nocturnal alert” mode can have on you sleep while you are in an unfamiliar environment.

Sleep Masks are Good for You because they can Help Reduce Your Anxiety

If you have trouble sleeping because of worry, you understand why it is best to ensure your environment is right.  

By adding a sleep eye mask to your bedtime routine, you have more control over your environment and create a more familiar routine and environment.

Not only do sleep masks create a more relaxing and familiar routine, but studies also found that people who used weighted blankets slept better and had fewer anxiety and depression symptoms. 

The deep pressure stimulation from weighted blankets can help calm the nervous system. Sleep masks can also create the feeling of comforting pressure like weighted blankets.

Sleep Masks are Affordable

We all know money problems can keep you awake at night, and that there’s always something new to spend your money on. 

Not only are sleep masks good for you and your sleep, they are good for your wallet. 

Sleep eye masks are much less expensive than blackout curtains and other sleep aids. 

Even though blackout curtains and sleep masks do the same job, sleep masks are far more affordable than block-out curtains.

That’s not the only thing. People are spending $100’s on rings and other devices to track and improve their sleep, but not only are they far more expensive than sleep masks, they are not as effective at improving your sleep either.

The most important thing to help you sleep better is blocking out light. A ring can tell you if you had a bad sleep, but it cannot block out light and actually help you have a better sleep like a sleep mask can.

Using a Sleep Mask is Safe

Some people have trouble sleeping, so they take sleeping pills to help them sleep better. 

But taking these medicines regularly can cause side effects that are hard to get rid of, and in most cases, can't be undone. 

There's even a chance of taking too many, getting addicted or becoming dependent on them. 

Not only is wearing a sleep mask while you sleep an easy and cheap way to help you sleep better, it is also safer and healthier than taking sleeping pills.

Sleep Masks can Help You Relax

If you sometimes have difficulty falling asleep, or it's a common problem for you, a sleep mask can help limit any extra "noise" in your brain. 

Even if you close your eyes, you can sometimes still see or feel the things around you. 

Sleep eye masks block out some of your senses, so you aren’t distracted by light and the things around you.

Summary

Here’s a quick summary of the 10 reasons why sleep eye masks are good for you. 

  1. Sleep Eye Masks Improve Your Sleep Quality 
  2. Sleep Masks Can Reduce Distractions
  3. Sleep Masks can be Good for your Skin
  4. Sleep Masks can Relieve Headaches
  5. Sleep Masks can Prevent Dry Eyes
  6. Sleep Masks are Convenient for Travel
  7. Sleep Masks are Good for You because they can Help Reduce Your Anxiety
  8. Sleep Masks are Affordable
  9. Using a Sleep Mask is Safe
  10. Sleep Masks can Help You Relax
Read more →

The 3 Best Supplements to Help You Sleep Better on Night Shift

Posted by Mitch cullen on

You may have noticed by looking at our products that we prefer to use natural methods to sleep better, rather than sleeping pills, however there are some natural supplements known to help with sleep. 

Even though there are only 3 on the list, a lot of time went into researching this and working out what the best 3 really are.

I really do think they will help you sleep better. I personally use all 3 of them and find they make a noticeable difference to my sleep and mood while working night shift. 

You should be able to buy these supplements at most health stores or online. The website I order mine from is iHerb.

I order from them because they have the biggest selection of supplements in the world and are very cheap. They are international but orders arrive very quickly to Australia (Around 5 days usually I find).

You can use any of the links on this page to get a further 5% off your order.

Click here to visit iHerb.com →

Make sure you check the laws in your country and state before buying each of these supplements. Make sure you seek medical advice and check the proper doses, side effects and allergies and what you shouldn’t take them in conjunction with before taking them. This eBook is not medical advice, do not listen to me, make your own decisions.

Anyway, lets get on with the list...

Melatonin

Melatonin is the main supplement I use if I am really struggling to sleep or really need a long deep sleep. I find it very effective at getting me to sleep, and helping me stay asleep.

It also doesn't make you drowsy like Restivate and the other over the counter sleeping tablets. I also find you get a real proper sleep, so you wake up refreshed not drowsy or feeling like you had an artificial sleep.

I don't take it every night as I don't want to build up a tolerance. I'm not sure if its actually possible to build up tolerance to it but I only take it when I need it just in case. 

You have probably heard about melatonin and it's role in sleep, but just in case you haven't here is a quick excerpt from webmd.com:

“Melatonin's main job in the body is to regulate night and day cycles or sleep-wake cycles. Darkness causes the body to produce more melatonin, which signals the body to prepare for sleep. Light decreases melatonin production and signals the body to prepare for being awake. Some people who have trouble sleeping have low levels of melatonin. It is thought that adding melatonin from supplements might help them sleep.

Some people take melatonin by mouth to adjust the body's internal clock. It is used for jet lag, for adjusting sleep-wake cycles in people whose daily work schedule changes (shift-work disorder), and for helping blind people establish a day and night cycle.”

At the time of writing this you can order it for under AU$5 a bottle on iHerb, I’ve linked it below. 

Click here to view Melatonin →

Serotonin 

Now as a bonus tip and thought on this subject, I have a bit of a theory which is not scientific at all and I do not want this to be considered advice or facts but bear with me anyway.

So, we already talked about how supplementing melatonin can help induce sleep as melatonin is the sleep hormone.

And we also talked about how your body produces melatonin when it is dark.

What we haven't talked about, but something that I learned in my research, is that when it is dark melatonin is actually converted from serotonin, and when it is light, your body converts the melatonin back into serotonin which wakes you up. 

So, here goes my unscientific conclusion and tip. Hopefully you can already see where I am going with this and I’m not crazy. 

When you wake up for night shift and it is dark, I would draw the conclusion that your body does not convert enough melatonin to serotonin, leaving you a little deficient. 

Now, if you don’t already know, serotonin is known to be the “feel good” chemical in our brain. It’s the chemical that cocaine makes your body produce in way higher than normal amounts. 

This possibly explains how we always feel less happy and more tired on night shift than on day shift, even with the same amount of sleep.

So what can we do about it? We can’t supplement serotonin as I don’t think it exists. However, there are supplements you can use to increase your serotonin levels instead.

My theory is that if you are deficient in serotonin on night shift, this supplement should help with that, which should put you in a better mood while you work night shifts. 

L-Tryptophan

From Wikipedia:

“Tryptophan is an α-amino acid that is used in the biosynthesis of proteins. It is essential in humans, meaning the body cannot synthesize it: it must be obtained from the diet. Tryptophan is also a precursor to the neurotransmitter serotonin, the hormone melatonin and vitamin B3.

Because tryptophan is converted into 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) which is then converted into the neurotransmitter serotonin, it has been proposed that consumption of tryptophan or 5-HTP may improve depression symptoms by increasing the level of serotonin in the brain. There is evidence that blood tryptophan levels are unlikely to be altered by changing the diet, but consuming purified tryptophan increases the serotonin level in the brain, whereas eating foods containing tryptophan does not.”

You can order it here:

Click here to view L-Tryptophan →

Magnesium

You may have already heard that magnesium can aid with sleep, and that being deficient can cause you to have trouble sleeping, and it's true. 

Magnesium regulates the parasympathetic nervous system which gets you calm and relaxed. It also regulates melatonin and binds to the GABA receptors which are responsible for quieting down nerve activity. 

If you are deficient you may have trouble quietening down this activity and have trouble getting to sleep and staying asleep.   

Older people have less magnesium in their diet and are at a higher risk of being deficient. 

If you want to order some magnesium just in case you are deficient, here's the link:

Click here to view Magnesium →

Conclusion

There are 3 natural ways supplements can help with your sleep. And whether you buy them in the stores or online they should be easy to find and very affordable. 

Melatonin is the sleep hormone and should help you get into a sleep state even when it is light.

Adding L-Tryptophan to your diet can increase serotonin production which may be low while working at night, which should increase your mood. 

Magnesium relaxes your nerves and regulates melatonin production. People who are deficient may have trouble sleeping. 

Here is a link to a cart containing all 3 of these supplements:

Click here to view all 3 →

Read more →

The Ultimate Guide on How to Sleep so Much Better on Night Shifts that You May Even Start to Love Them

Posted by Dave Manville on

The Easiest and Most Effective Ways to Sleep so Much Better on Nightshift That You May Even Start to Love It

 

Disclaimer: All of the advice and tips in this book are not to be taken as medical advice. I am not a doctor or an expert. Honestly most of this advice was not even researched. Consult your GP before trying any of the tips in this book. If you have serious symptoms of insomnia, please consult your GP. Love Nightshift and the author of this book are not responsible for the result of anything that may happen due to the result of you following any of the advice in this book. Please do not follow the advice in this book. I spent a lot of time writing this book and I hope it helps you sleep better.

Introduction

Hi, I’m Mitch, founder of Love Nightshift.

Thank you so much for downloading this book. I spent a lot of time writing it and I really hope that you will read it and that it will help you sleep better. 

Let’s start with a quick bit about me and how Love Nightshift and this book came to be.

I started Love Nightshift when I was 23 and working night shifts.

When I first started working night shifts they were okay. But after a few months they really started to take their toll on me. I was sleeping all day on my days off, losing weight like crazy, sick regularly and grumpy 24/7. My relationship was suffering too.

Everybody at work had their own advice and tips on how to manage night shifts and I tried them all with mixed results.

It wasn't until I did some research on a particularly bad day that I learned there was a few simple keys to successfully managing night shifts.

I found that for a number of reasons which we will touch on later, blocking out light is the biggest factor in getting a good sleep.

No wonder it is so hard to sleep on night shift.

After reading this I went out in search of a sleep mask. To my surprise every sleep mask on the market seemed to be designed for travellers to use once or as novelty gifts with funny words or faces on them.

They were okay and actually did help me sleep better, but they were so cheaply and thoughtlessly made, bad at blocking out light and itchy on my face that they really weren't worth the material they were made out of. It was obvious the designers had put no thought into how beneficial and important a good sleeping mask could be for night shift workers.

Frustrated by this but in desperate need of a better sleep I made my own homemade sleeping mask. The difference it made to my sleep was incredible.

After creating this sleep mask, I ended up managing my shifts very successfully, much better than my co-workers who always looked like zombies on every shift and complained their days off were spent recovering.

I wanted to help them but they would never do anything to help themselves, they just kept drinking energy drinks, and kept taking sleeping pills. It was easier than making a good sleeping mask and buying some ear plugs. Besides, it wasn't that bad, they were comfortable with their routine, and how could a mask work? It's just a piece of material.

Then one day my girlfriend noticed the roster for her placements had a few night shifts on it, she was nervous, she had never worked nights before and wanted to do great on her placements to help land herself a job.

She asked me for help and I told her night shifts are easy if you manage them correctly. All you need is a good sleeping mask and some earplugs. It's true you can check the studies or see for yourself.

Unlike my co-workers, my girlfriend wanted to help herself, she was a nurse and interested in health so was not about to ruin her body with energy drinks and sleeping pills. I made her a mask and gave her some earplugs, and her night shifts were a breeze.

This made me realise that there were probably thousands of people out there who wanted to help themselves have a better night shift. I remembered how hard they were when I first started and how there was nowhere to get quality sleeping masks suitable for managing night shift.

I remembered the difference my sleeping mask had made to my sleep and I wanted other people in need to have the option to help themselves and to experience the improvements it makes.

That's why I founded Love Nightshift, to help people who want to help themselves to love night shifts.

This book is a combination of advice I have received from my night shift co-workers and the things I have learned in my research since starting this company. It is also full of random things I have learned and others I have just made-up from first-hand experience.

Some of the tips in this book you may not be interested in or believe, they may not even be true. Some of them may be so obvious to you your roll your eyes. However, hopefully in this book is buried a tip or two that really does help you sleep better.

This book is also full of sales pitches for products I truly believe in. My own products as well as 2 other companies. Do not however think that I wrote this book purely to sell you things. There are entire chapters full of quality tips that will cost you nothing at all to follow.

Some of the referral links are for a supplement company I personally buy all my supplements from. I will receive a measly 5% store credit if you use my link. I could have recommended a far more expensive company that paid me more but I didn’t. I only recommended them because I was going to recommend them anyway.

The other links are for an Australian mattress company. I have not bought anything from them but I would love to. I will receive store credit there if you buy from them, hopefully enough that I can become a customer of theirs.

So again, thanks for downloading this book, I hope it helps you sleep better, and without further ado let’s get straight into it.

Section one – Block out light

This is the single most important factorwhen it comes to getting a good sleep.

Ok, I know what you are thinking, we sell sleeping masks, of course we are going to say that. That might be true, but actually it’s the other way around. We sell sleeping masks BECAUSE blocking out light is the single most important factor when it comes to getting a good sleep.

In summary, when it is light your body converts melatonin (the sleep hormone), to serotonin which wakes you up. When it is dark your body converts the serotonin back into melatonin, making you sleep. No wonder it is so hard to sleep on nightshift.

If you don’t want to take our word for it here are some studies you can take a look at. If you just want to sleep better, then skip to the next page for some tips on how to block out light.

https://www.everydayhealth.com/sleep/too-much-light-ruining-not-just-your-sleep-but-your-health-too.aspx

https://www.sleep.org/articles/how-lights-affect-sleep/

https://www.sleepfoundation.org/sleep-news/lights-out-good-nights-sleep 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5976009/

Can you guess what the first tip will be?

Ok let’s get this out of the way:

Get a good sleeping mask!

Sleeping masks work by blocking out light so that your body will naturally start to induce sleep. They also prevent light from waking you up during your sleep.

Most sleeping masks do not do a very good job of blocking out light, which begs the question, why even wear it if it hardly blocks out any light?

This was actually probably the question that led me to design my own sleep mask and eventually start Love Nightshift.

Now, I’m not claiming I invented a magic sleeping mask that blocks out all light entirely for everyone in the world who wears it, this would be impossible as everyone’s face is different.

However, it does have a fair few features which make it block out light far better than any other mask on the market. And for those few people who it still doesn’t fit, we have our 30-day return policy.

Feature one – Shaped nose area with added material.

The nose area is by far the most common area other masks let light in through. They sit flat across your nose leaving a huge gap between your cheeks and the mask, I’m sure anyone who has ever tried another sleep mask has experienced this first-hand.

We fixed this by shaping the nose area so it fits around your nose and sits flatter on your face, we then added extra material to create a better seal.

Feature two – Memory foam padding

The memory foam shapes comfortably to your head sealing out light. Instead of the mask leaving gaps, especially around the corners where other masks usually let light in due to the strap pulling the mask into your eye sockets, our mask holds its shape and moulds to your head.

Feature three – Velcro and elastic adjustable strap

Not everyone’s head is the same size, that would be weird. Our strap is Velcro adjustable so you can fit the mask to your head as tight or as loosely as you’d like. And don’t worry, we used a special type of Velcro that won’t pull your hair.

The strap is also elastic so it can stretch and comfortably hold the memory foam against your face.

Feature four – Contoured eye sockets 

The contoured eye sockets have 3 benefits.

The first is obvious comfort benefit of preventing the mask from pressing uncomfortably on your eyelids.

The second is that they allow your eyes to move freely during the important Rapid Eye Movement (REM) stage of your sleep.

And finally, they prevent the mask from touching your eyelashes and more importantly if you have them, your eyelash extensions.

Summary

Ok, that’s enough selling, you didn’t download this book to be sold to, you downloaded it because you want to sleep better. So if you want to sleep better what are you waiting for, buy our mask! (haha)

But seriously, all jokes aside, if you want to purchase one, the link is below, they really have helped 1000’s of people sleep better, you can read the reviews when you click the link.

I promise you that aside from two of the comments, one from my Mum and one from her friend (who paid for her mask, and neither were asked to post the comments), all of the comments on that review page were posted on our Facebook page by genuine customers, who I do not personally know, without us asking them to or incentivising them to post those comments in any way. We also have many more positive comments I haven’t yet added to that page.

I don’t know if there’s many businesses out there that get so many nice positive reviews and comments like we do, especially without asking for or incentivising them. This makes me really proud and happy knowing that we have helped so many people and have had such a huge impact on their sleep and in turn, their jobs and their lives. That is why this company was started.

Sleep Mask: Sleep Mask

Couples/Besties Sleep Mask Pack (2 masks): Couples Sleep Mask Pack

Reduce the light from electronics

Ok, so we are still on the subject of blocking out light. Abig emitter of light that is often overlooked is your electronic devices. I’m talking about the little LED lights on your smoke alarms, chargers, alarm clocks (who even uses these?), TVs and aircons.

Eliminate the light that any of these electronic devices in your bedroom emits. You can put tape or stickers over the little lights and turn any off that you are not using before you go to sleep.

This might not seem like much but it can make a huge difference. The constant red lights aren’t as bad but flashing lights like on smoke alarms and the air cons which for some reason were made with blue lights are terrible for affecting your sleep. Either way it’s an easy fix and will make a difference.

Reduce the blue light from your screens 

Reduce the blue light your electronic screens emit when using them before you go to sleep. The blue light your devices emit is like UV light which stops your body from producing the sleep hormone melatonin. Here’s a link to a study that shows just how serious the impact of these is.

https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/blue-light-has-a-dark-side

The best thing you can do before going to sleep is to not use them, but we all know that isn’t going to happen, which is why there are special apps and settings you can use to reduce this blue light before bed.

If you have an iPhone you can use the built in “night shift” mode. If you have an android I’m sure there are apps you can install which will do the same. There is also a free app for computers called f.lux which will do this for your computer.

https://justgetflux.com

This is another easy tip that does not seem like much, but try it, they spent all that time making those apps for a reason.

Change your light bulbs

If you are using a lamp to read, replace the bulb with a warm, low wattage bulb. I would opt for an old school bulb or if you can’t find one an LED bulb as the new energy saving bulbs are designed to emit UV light and also tend to be much whiter. It would be a good idea to use your lamp instead of your main light before bed too.

Block out light from entering your room

This is the last section on blocking out light.

Block out curtains

Get block out curtains. These can be expensive and you probably won’t want to or be able to do this if you are living in a rental property but they do block out a lot of light.

If you work nightshifts long term and are not moving anytime soon then these are a good investment to help you sleep better.

Cover your windows

If you are renting or don’t want to buy block out curtains, you can cover your windows with tinfoil. I have never tried this myself but have heard of a lot of people who do it when they work nightshifts. I have also stayed in rooms at work that have had the windows covered with tinfoil and it does block out light very effectively.

I have heard of people using shampoo or water in a spray bottle to stick the tinfoil to their windows. It sounds very messy and time consuming but again, it does block out light so you can sleep better.

Put a towel under your door

Put a towel or something similar up against your door to block out the light from coming in underneath.

Final thoughts

Prepare in advance. During the day you will be able to see all the little gaps where light gets in and cover them as best you can. You will be surprised once the bulk of the light has been blocked out, just how many sneaky places it can get in and interfere with your sleep, and what a difference it makes.

Bonus tip – Paint your walls

Paint your walls a dark, tranquil color, making sure to use a matte paint and not a gloss paint. This might be a bit of an extreme tip however it is meant more for if you are painting your bedroom anyway. Picking a color that will make your room appear darker and easier to sleep in would be something worth considering.

Section Two - Block out noise 

We all know how hard and annoying it can be trying to sleep when it is noisy. I’m not going to go and find a study that says it’s harder to sleep when your neighbour is mowing his lawn or someone is banging dishes around, I doubt anybody has studied that because it’s just common sense. We’ve all been woken up by a loud noise at some point in our lives I’m sure so let’s get straight onto the tips.

Wear earplugs

Surprise! We sell earplugs! And no surprises here, in my opinion they’re really good.

What do I know about earplugs? Well I’ve worn them 12 hours a day at work and tried just about every pair on the market. The companies I’ve worked for provide earplugs for safety and offer a huge selection as everyone has different preferences.

All of the earplugs you will find on the market are rated to block out a certain level of noise as they are sold for safety, except ours, ours were designed purely for sleeping. So while all earplugs on the market including ours will pretty much block out the same amount of noise, I’m going to tell you why I prefer Love Nightshift earplugs.

They are uncorded so they are comfortable, even when you sleep on your side. They are small so will fit comfortably in your ears. The material is the highest quality we could find, it bounces back slower than any other earplugs we could find, this gives you time to properly insert it into your ear before it expands and seals out noise. The material is also much softer than foam earplugs.

That’s pretty much it. Earplugs are all fairly similar but those few differences really do make a difference. Like I said I’ve tried all of the major brands and worn them 12 hours a day so you can take my word for it or you can go to a safety store and try some out and see what I mean.

If you want to try ours a sample is included when you order a mask, or you can save some money when you buy a mask and earplugs together, or if you already have a mask you can order a pack on their own here:

Earplugs: Earplugs

Soundproofing and eliminating noise

Invest in soundproofing

Thicker curtains and double glazed windows are known to be fairly soundproof, but nobody is going to buy them just for that so let’s move on. Sticking a towel under your door will eliminate light and increase soundproofing but aside from that you’re better off focusing on eliminating noise.

Put your phone on airplane mode

The number one tip here would be to turn your phone onto airplane mode. This will allow you to still use it as an alarm clock but not have it receive any calls or messages until you turn airplane mode off. Make sure you also turn the wifi off so it doesn’t receive emails or Facebook messages.

Turn off sources of noise

If you have a fridge or anything else in your room that makes noise move it, cover it or turn it off. Consistent noise like aircon may not affect your sleep but, just like your phone ringing, a fridge making sudden noises when it is cooling down can be an issue.

Try white noise

Speaking of consistent noise. Some people find they sleep better and actually cannot sleep without white noise. Some examples of white noise are fans, aircons and the ocean.

You can buy machines that make white noise but if you just want to try sleeping with it you can get white noise apps or songs and play them from your phone or computer.

You can also search Youtube for 10 hour long white noise videos. They have a lot to choose from like ocean sounds, forest and bird sounds. 

Section three – Supplements

You have possibly noticed by our product offering and the tips I’ve given so far that I much prefer naturally sleeping better rather than using sleeping pills, however there are some natural supplements known to help with sleep.

Make sure you check the laws in your country and state before buying each of these supplements. Make sure you seek medical advice and check the proper doses, side effects and allergies and what you shouldn’t take them in conjunction with before taking them. This eBook is not medical advice, do not listen to me, make your own decisions.

You should be able to buy these supplements at most health stores or online. The website I order mine from is iHerb. I order from them because they have probably the biggest selection of supplements in the world and are very cheap. They are international but orders arrive very quickly to Australia.

Here’s a little sales pitch from their website:

“Browse our site and you'll find over 1,200 brands and 30,000 brand name products that you may also find at health food stores and natural pharmacies -- with one important difference: Our prices are typically 30 - 50% less!”

You can use any of the links in this eBook to get a further 5% off. I will also get 5% credit towards my next order.

https://www.iherb.com/?rcode=MIT8735

Melatonin 

I think we have talked enough about melatonin for you to know where this is going. Here is a quick excerpt from webmd.com:

“Melatonin's main job in the body is to regulate night and day cycles or sleep-wake cycles. Darkness causes the body to produce more melatonin, which signals the body to prepare for sleep. Light decreases melatonin production and signals the body to prepare for being awake. Some people who have trouble sleeping have low levels of melatonin. It is thought that adding melatonin from supplements might help them sleep.

Some people take melatonin by mouth to adjust the body's internal clock. It is used for jet lag, for adjusting sleep-wake cycles in people whose daily work schedule changes (shift-work disorder),and for helping blind people establish a day and night cycle.”

At the time of writing this you can order it for under AU$5 a bottle on iHerb, I’ve linked it below.

https://iherb.co/jirD4qb4
Bonus tip

Now as a bonus tip and thought on this subject, I have a bit of a theory which is not scientific at all and I do not want this to be considered advice or facts but bear with me anyway.

So, we already talked about how supplementing melatonin can help induce sleep as melatonin is the sleep hormone. And we also already talked about how when it is light the body converts melatonin to serotonin which wakes you up making it hard to sleep during the day.

So, here goes my unscientific conclusion and tip. Hopefully you can already see where I am going with this and I’m not crazy.

When you wake up for nightshift and it is dark I would draw the conclusion that your body does not convert enough melatonin to serotonin, leaving you a little deficient.

Now, if you don’t already know, serotonin is known to be the feel good chemical in our brain. It’s the chemical that cocaine makes your body produce in way higher than normal amounts.

This possibly explains how we always feel worse and more tired on night shift than on day shift, even with the same amount of sleep.

So what can we do about it? We can’t supplement serotonin as I don’t think it exists. However, there are 3 supplements you can use to increase your serotonin levels instead. I’d just pick one as they all do very similar things. I’ve put them in order of what seem most effective to least effective.

L-Tryptophan

From Wikipedia:

“Tryptophan is an α-amino acid that is used in the biosynthesis of proteins. It is essential in humans, meaning the body cannot synthesize it: it must be obtained from the diet. Tryptophan is also a precursor to the neurotransmitter serotonin, the hormone melatonin and vitamin B3.

Because tryptophan is converted into 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) which is then converted into the neurotransmitter serotonin, it has been proposed that consumption of tryptophan or 5-HTP may improve depression symptoms by increasing the level of serotonin in the brain. There is evidence that blood tryptophan levels are unlikely to be altered by changing the diet, but consuming purified tryptophan increases the serotonin level in the brain, whereas eating foods containing tryptophan does not.”

https://iherb.co/4YwbGE3m

5-HTP

Mentioned in the Tryptophan paragraph above but here’s some more from Wikipedia:

“5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP), also known as oxitriptan, is a naturally occurring amino acid and chemical precursor as well asa metabolic intermediate in the biosynthesis of the neurotransmitter serotonin.”

https://iherb.co/oXRugcJJ

L-theanine

L-theanine is an amino acid that enhances your bodys production of GABA, serotonin and dopamine. Here is a copy paste explanation from Wikipedia:

“Large studies in humans have not been undertaken; however, several smaller-scale studies (fewer than 100 participants) have shown increased alpha wave generation and lowered anxiety, along with benefits to sleep quality in people with ADHD.

The combination of theanine and caffeine has been shown to promote faster simple reaction time, faster numeric working memory reaction time and improved sentence verification accuracy. Due to this, the combination has become popular over recent years as a nootropic supplement typically found in the form of a pill, drink, or gum.

Theanine has been reported to raise levels of brain serotonin, dopamine, and GABA, with possible improvement in specific memory and learning tasks.”

https://iherb.co/CSGhYRdm

Link to all 4

If you want to purchase more than one supplement, to make it easier I have created a link to a cart that contains each of the products listed below, just remove the ones you don’t want and checkout.

There are 100’s of brands and sizes and doses of each supplement to choose from so feel free to browse the store if you aren’t happy with the ones I recommended. The ones I chose are the best value (dose x quantity/price) I could find at the time of writing this.

https://iherb.co/b1x2YxRu

Section four – Scent and aromatherapy

Now I have not, and am not, going to look for any science or studies to back this up, this is either your kind of thing or it’s not.

Certain scents can be very relaxing, pleasant and help you to sleep better. For example, the scent of our new Luxury Sleep Spray. There you go, I’ve successfully promoted all of our products, that’s the end of the book.

Just kidding, I haven’t told you how great our sleep spray is yet. Oh, and because I actually want to help you sleep better I have included plenty more tips too. How kind of me.

So back to the sleep spray, like I said this sort of thing is either your thing or it isn’t. If it is your thing and you really want to have the best possible sleep experience, spray some of our sleep spray on and your pillow just before bed.

The essential oils used to create the unique scent of our pillow spray not only smell amazing, they were chosen and blended specifically to calm and relax you to sleep after a long and stressful shift.

Just like our other 2 products, I believe that our sleep spray is the best on the market. How do I know this?

Well once we had decided that we needed to create a sleep spray to truly help our customers have the best luxury sleep experience possible, we sought out aroma therapists and other creators of essential oil blends and fragrances from all across Australia and payed them to create their best calming and sleep blends for us to sample.

We sampled bottles from 5 different people and one stood out. No matter who we asked, they always picked it as their favourite. The lady who made the bottle was truly passionate about creating the best calming sleep spray blend for us and it showed when compared to the others.

She spared no expense and refused to compromise in quality. When we asked if we could use plastic bottles in order to keep the price down for our customers and she refused as plastic would interfere with the essential oils.

She didn't dilute lavender in water and call it a spray, nor did she blend just a couple of fragrances. She carefully chose 4 high quality essential oils, all known to be calming, relaxing and sleep inducing. She then perfected the ratios creating the most pleasant blend we think you will ever smell. She now creates all of our sprays for us right here in Australia, never compromising in quality.

If you want to experience it for yourself, you can get yours here: Sleep Spray

Section five – Rosters and hours

I know a lot of you do not have much choice on the roster that you work but for those who do here are a couple of tips and thoughts on rosters and hours.

Rosters

From what I have heard, mining companies did a lot of research to find out what the best or healthiest roster is for it’s staff. The roster they concluded which was best is the “Lifestyle” 5/4 roster.

The roster goes something like this. 5 days on, 4 days off, 4 nights on, 5 days off, 4 days on, 4 days off, 5 nights on, and so on, you get it.

This roster actually costs the companies a lot more than a classic 7/7 roster as there are more changeovers a year, which means more buses, flights, room cleans etc, so they must have chosen it for a reason. 

So from that, you could possibly conclude that doing 4 or 5 nights in a row is the sweet spot for your health. I actually prefer doing the longer 7 nights in a row as I find I get into a routine after the first few nights, however you could argue that that’s the point, you don’t want to get into a routine of being awake all night and sleeping all day so 4-5 may be better.

The reason I write this is my girlfriend is a nurse and often only does 1 or 2 nights at a time. While I’m envious of that, if you have to do 4-5 a month, then maybe doing them all in one go would be better.

So that’s my thoughts on rosters, see what works for you and your boss. Now for my thoughts on hours.

Hours

Generally, your job is either going to be 8h shifts or 12h shifts, and probably not have a lot of flexibility on the times so I won’t spend too much time on this. Finishing earlier in the morning seems to make a huge difference to my sleep, even if it’s just finishing at 6am instead of 7.

The next tip here contradicts the last one a little bit. Try to stay up for around 2 hours after your shift, especially on your first night and especially if you are doing 12h shifts.

If you sleep as soon as you get home, I find you will wake up too early and the next night you will start getting tired 2 hours before the end of your shift.

I don’t mean stay up walking around, driving around doing things getting your mind going. I just mean relax in a dark room resisting the urge to sleep for about 2 hours before you sleep. This is a nice Segway into the next section about relaxing before bed.

Section six – Relax before bed

Caffeine

Look out for caffeine. Caffeine is great for staying awake during your shift but make sure you don’t accidentally or deliberately have any too close to your bed time as it can definitely leave you lying in bed unable to sleep.

If you think you’re going to get tired near the end of you shift, then preempt this and have your caffeine earlier in the shift. It will take a bit to kick in anyway. Caffeine lasts around 4-6 hours, so I wouldn’t have any within that timeframe of your shift finishing.

That tip might have been pretty obvious but this one might not be. Make sure to check the labels of your food and drink for hidden caffeine. Common things that can be hiding caffeine include weight loss pills, tea, some painkillers, chocolates and fizzy drinks.

Try relaxing workout alternatives

You may not want to work out right before you go to sleep as physical exercise will get your blood flowing and stimulate your mind. If you do want to you can try doing some relaxing exercise like yoga or tai chi to unwind before going to sleep instead.

Avoid stressful thoughts and social media

Avoid talking about or thinking about stressful things that may keep you up before bed. Put them aside until you wake up or have finished your round of nights. It might be a good idea to avoid social media before bed too for this reason. Arguing with someone in the Youtube comments isn’t a good way to relax.

Write things down if they are keeping you up

If you have had a bad shift or have things are on your mind that are keeping you awake, take out a pen and paper and write them all down. Try to write every single thought, idea or thing down that is keeping you awake.

This may not work every time or for everything but quite often it will make your problems seem a lot smaller when you see them all written out and will also allow you to forget things as you know they are written down. This may sound silly but if you have something on your mind that is keeping you up give it a try.

Try meditation

If you have written everything down and still can’t sleep, try meditation, having a relaxing bath, reading a relaxing book or listening to relaxing music. You can also try counting your breathes until you fall asleep.

Avoid alcohol

Try to avoid alcohol before bed. It may work at getting you to sleep, however once its affects wear off you will likely find yourself waking up or having a much more restless sleep.

Instead of alcohol try a drink to help induce sleep. Chamomile, lavender and valerian in hot water is one recipe you can try.

Eat a healthy low/slow carb meal

Food is another one to consider. I try to eat a good protein and fat rich meal before bed and avoid simple carbs. I know it’s the morning after night shift but try to pretend you are eating dinner. I do not suggest skipping this no matter how tired you are as you are just going to wake up hungry and not be able to get back to sleep even if you eat. If you really can’t be bothered after your shift, even a banana might be enough.

Section seven – Bed and bedding 

Mattress

Mattress companies will tell you in their marketing that you spend about a third of your life in bed so you should invest in a good mattress, and they’re actually right.

So you can go to a store and find one that suits, spend about $2-8k for a good one, get stung again on delivery fees and then get it home only to find after a week it isn’t quite right.

Great tip huh? No? Well some really smart Australian thought the same thing and decided to solve this problem.

Koala make beds that are packed into a box to save on shipping fees, making it really easy for you to get it home.

Once it’s delivered you can then make one of those cool unboxing videos and the wine glass jumping video I’m sure you’ve all seen in their ads.

After that just enjoy how much better you are sleeping.

If after 120 days you don’t like it, they will give you a full refund. Oh, and they have Afterpay and Zip.

Check them out here http://koalaty.co/lyC9h

Pillows

After you have a decent mattress you can sleep on, it would be stupid to use a cheap pillow that doesn’t suit you.

Pillows are far cheaper than mattresses and unless your mattress is terrible I think pillows could give you an equal improvement in the quality of your sleep.

I got mine from Pillow Talk in Australia and it was easily one of the best things I ever bought. When I can, I even take it with me when I travel now, as I sleep so much better with it. I bought mine from Pillow Talk because my local store has a bed and allows you to try all the different pillows to find the perfect one for you.

Koala, the company linked above also have a pillow that looks amazing, I would get one if I didn’t already have mine from Pillow Talk. They also have the same 120-night trial period for the pillow so it would be worth trying. And again, they have Afterpay and Zip. Here’s the link again http://koalaty.co/lyC9h

Sheets

Sheets. Koala also have really nice sheets. Can you guess what they’re made of? Sustainably sources eucalyptus. 120-night trail, Afterpay, Australian, cheap and super high quality. Just check them out, they deserve it for having a go and saving us from mattress companies.

This is the last time, here’s the link http://koalaty.co/lyC9h.

Blankets

I’m sure you all have a blanket. What’s more important in Australia is being too hot to sleep. I’m sure you all know that it’s harder to sleep without aircon but here’s the science, the optimal sleeping temperature is 18degC.

You heard it here first. It’s easier to sleep in Australia with the aircon on.

Ok, so my tips are getting to the point where the only people who would benefit from them are those who have never slept in their life so I think I’ll end this here.

Conclusion 

Thank you so much for reading, I’m sure you already knew a lot of the advice in this book, but if everyone just got one thing that helped them sleep better then I hope it was worth reading.

Please feel free to email any feedback to hello@lovenightshift.com.auso I can continue to improve this book. Please also remember that it was free and I am not an expert.

Below I have included a summary of the tips, a summary of the links, and a list of sources and further reading for you to look at if you are interested. 

Summary 

  1. Block out light with a good sleep mask
  2. Cover up the lights on your electronics
  3. Turn your phone to airplane mode
  4. Use the blue light reducing apps, night shift mode for iPhone, f.lux on computer
  5. Block out light with curtains, tape, tinfoil and towels under the door
  6. Block out sound with earplugs
  7. Put a towel under your door to block light and noise
  8. Play white noise
  9. Try some natural supplements, melatonin and serotonin increasers
  10. Try aroma therapy
  11. Change your roster and hours
  12. Stay up around 2 hours after your shift
  13. Avoid caffeine 4-6h before the end of you shift, pre-empt it and have it earlier
  14. Watch out for hidden caffeine
  15. Relax before bed
  16. Try some mediation, reading or counting your breathes
  17. Try yoga or tai chi before bed if you want to workout
  18. Write things down that are on your mind if they are keeping you up
  19. Eat a high fat and protein meal before bed, or a banana
  20. Avoid alcohol before bed
  21. Get a nice mattress, pillow and sheets from Koala http://koalaty.co/lyC9h
  22. Turn your aircon on cold

Links

Love Nightshift

Home: Home

Sleep Mask: Sleep Mask

Couples/Besties Sleep Mask Pack (2 masks): Couples Sleep Mask Pack

Earplugs: Earplugs

Sleep Spray: Sleep Spray

Supplements

I order all of my supplements from iHerb because they are by far the cheapest I have found and have a huge range. They are international but shipping is very fast to Australia.

You can use any of the links in this eBook to get a further 5% off. I will also get 5% credit towards my next order.

Home: https://www.iherb.com/?rcode=MIT8735

Melatonin: https://iherb.co/jirD4qb4

L-Tryptophan: https://iherb.co/4YwbGE3m

5-HTTP: https://iherb.co/oXRugcJJ

L-Theanine: https://iherb.co/CSGhYRdm

All four in one cart (remove what you don’t want): https://iherb.co/b1x2YxRu

Beds and bedding

Koala, high quality, cheap Australian mattresses, sheets and pillows: http://koalaty.co/lyC9h

Free app to reduce blue light from computer screen

https://justgetflux.com 

Sources and further reading

Block out light

https://www.everydayhealth.com/sleep/too-much-light-ruining-not-just-your-sleep-but-your-health-too.aspx

https://www.sleep.org/articles/how-lights-affect-sleep/

https://www.sleepfoundation.org/sleep-news/lights-out-good-nights-sleep

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5976009/

Reduce blue light

https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/blue-light-has-a-dark-side

Supplements

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/5-htp-benefits

https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-794/5-htp

https://www.thesleepdoctor.com/2017/07/11/understanding-l-theanine-sleep-better-night-feel-relaxed-alert-day/https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/5-Hydroxytryptophan

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theanine

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tryptophan

https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-940/melatonin

 

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How to Reduce Light so that Your Body will Naturally go to Sleep while Working Night Shift

Posted by Mitch cullen on

Light is the single biggest factor when it comes to trying to get a good sleep, especially on night shift. Your body naturally produces the sleep hormone melatonin when it is dark, and converts it back to serotonin when it is light. Reducing light during the day is important if you want to get a good sleep during the day, however making your bedroom completely dark is also very difficult during the day which is why it is so hard to sleep during the day when working night shifts.

Here are a few tips to help you reduce light so that your body can naturally produce melatonin and go to sleep when you are working night shifts.

A big emitter of light that is often overlooked is your electronic devices, we will start with those as they are easier and emit more light than you might think, we will then move into tips to block out sunlight in your bedroom so you can sleep while working nightshift.

  1. Eliminate the light that any electronic devices in your bedroom emit. You can put tape over the little lights and turn any off that you are not using before you go to sleep.
  2. Reduce the blue light your electronic screens emit when using them before you go to sleep. The blue light your electronics emit is like UV light, which stops your body from producing the sleep hormone melatonin. The best thing you can do before going to sleep is to not use them, but if you are going to use them before you go to sleep then there are special apps and settings you can use to reduce the blue light your devices emit before you go to sleep. If you have an iPhone use the nightshift mode. If you have an android there are apps you can install. There is also a free app for computers called f.lux which will do this for your computer.
  3. If you are reading before you go to sleep, avoid reading on backlit devices.
  4. If you are using a lamp to read, replace the bulb with a warm, low wattage bulb. I would opt for an old school bulb as the new energy saving bulbs tend to emit a much whiter, UV light.
  5. Get block out curtains. These can be expensive and you probably won’t want to or be able to do this if you are living in a rental property but they do block out a lot of light. If you work nightshifts long term and are not moving anytime soon then these would be a good investment to help you sleep better when you are working nightshift.
  6. Cover your windows with tinfoil to block out light in your bedroom. I have never tried this myself but have heard of a lot of people who do it when they work nightshifts. I have also stayed in rooms at work that have had the windows covered with tinfoil and it does block out light very effectively. This could be a good alternative if you are renting or don’t want to buy block out curtains. While you will save money, I imagine you could waste a lot of time. I have heard of people using shampoo or water in a spray bottle to stick the tinfoil to their windows. It sounds very messy and time consuming but again, it does block out light so you can sleep better.
  7. Paint your walls a dark, tranquil color, making sure to use a matte paint and not a gloss paint. This might be a bit of an extreme tip, however it is more for you if you are already planning on painting your bedroom. Picking a color that will make your room appear darker and easier to sleep in would be something worth considering to help you sleep better while you work nightshift.
  8. Put a towel or something similar up against your bedroom door to block the light out from coming in underneath it.
  9. Prepare in advance. If you know you are going to be working night shift, the day before you start, try as many of these tips to reduce light in you room as you can so you can sleep better when your night shifts start. By preparing in advance, during the day you will be able to see all the little gaps where light gets in and cover them as best you can. You will be surprised once the bulk of the light has been blocked out, just how many sneaky places it can get in and interfere with your sleep, and what a difference it makes.
  10. If you can’t be bothered covering your windows with tinfoil or spending $100s on block out curtains, or if you've tried all these tips and you can still see that there is light in your bedroom, get one of our sleeping masks. After doing step 9 I’m sure you will notice just how much light is still in your room during the day which will interfere with your ability to get the best sleep possible while working nightshifts. As mentioned above, light will stop your body from producing the sleep hormone melatonin and instead your body will be converting your melatonin into serotonin.

Our sleeping masks were designed specifically for nightshift workers. They are molded to comfortably fit your face and seal out all light. If you really want to get the best possible sleep while working night shifts, then they are a small investment for a very easy way to get a much better sleep. You can find out more about there here:

Luxury Sleeping Mask

 

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20 Tips to Help You Sleep Better on Night Shift

Posted by Mitch cullen on

20 of the best tips and tricks to help you sleep easier and sleep longer and deeper while working nightshift. Perfect for shift workers like nurses who work night shifts to help them sleep better. Start sleeping better, and loving night shifts more today. These tips are also perfect if you just want to sleep in longer.
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