Bed: Wash sheets weekly and comforters monthly on a hot cycle to kill germs and dust mites that can cause itchy eyes and congestion.
Floor: Bacteria, toxins, and grime from outside end up inside via your shoes. Leave footwear at the door and vacuum regularly (weekly if you have carpeting).
Windows: Shades attract less dust than blinds. Wipe down vinyl ones, and vacuum fabric shades, blinds and curtains as part of a monthly dust-busting routine. Every few weeks, run a rag dipped in bleach water over windowsills to kill mold.
Accessories: Ceiling fans, light fixtures, and lamp shades are dust magnets so wipe those down with a microfiber cloth every few weeks. To best clean ceiling fan blades, slip a pillowcase over each and pull the fabric back to help trap dust.
If you’re allergy prone, experts recommend using special mattress and pillow casings that ward off dust mites. All bedding should be breathable since staying cool gives you more peaceful shut-eye. Research shows a drop in body temp may make us drowsy so opt for sheets and comforters made of cotton and down since heat escapes better from them than synthetics. Also, don’t store stuff under your bed. Bins and boxes can lead to dust build-up, which leads to wheezing. If you must use that storage space, pull everything out and vacuum once a month.
Color and art are personal preferences but ask yourself if your walls are calming. Soft, water-hued shades tend to reduce stress. Blues tend to be the most calming. Pale green, periwinkle, and lavender are also good choices. Lighter matte-finished shades have a soothing effect, so neutrals and pastels are great choices. Hang artwork that represents happy memories or dreams. If you spent idyllic summers at the beach when you were a kid, try a seascape. Is Paris on your bucket list? A pastel watercolor of the City of Light would be perfect.
Drown out things that go bump in the night with a white noise machine. That soothing, continuous whir helps you stay in dreamland. Many machines offer different sound settings and a timer, and work equally well for kids and adults. Many models are sleek and small and fit nicely on a bedside table. Also on your nightstand should be calming items such as family photos or favorite books— whatever brings you comfort. Phones are a big no-no! Put electronics away at night and truly take a break from technology.