Dream Green! Ways To Green While You Sleep

On average, we sleep anywhere from 5-10 hours. That is a good part of our day. Have you ever thought of going green while you sleep? While that comfy set of high thread-count sheets, fluffy comforter, and pillow-top mattress are definitely inviting at the end of the day, they could be harboring toxins that are less than restorative. Here’s what to watch out for when it comes to making your bed.

Start with your Sheets
The cleaner, fresher and more natural sheets are, the better they are to sleep on. Because of the amount of perspiration given off during an 8-hour sleep, choose sheets that breathe and absorb moisture. Look for untreated sheets made from organic, natural fibers. In winter, cozy up in organic cotton flannel sheets. In the summer, pure linen is best, or go for less expensive organic all-combed pima or percale cotton sateen sheets. Don’t buy polyester sheets because they are made with petroleum-based fibers. Sheets treated with resins (no-iron finishes) should be considered toxic; washing can never eliminate the resins. Also, avoid sleeping on pure silk sheets, labeled “dry-clean only,” since dry-cleaning emanates toxic fumes.

A Cozy Comforter
Sleeping under organic wool comforters and blankets is deeply regenerative. Although organic wool comforters are expensive, with proper care, they can be passed down from generation to generation. For those allergic to wool, organic cotton comforters and blankets are the next best choice, and they are cheaper than wool. Just be sure to buy cotton that doesn’t have a resin finish.

The Proper Pillow

Because you sleep with your nose buried in or next to your pillow, it is important that this part of your bedding be made of organic, untreated, natural materials that don’t produce odors. Choosing an organic cotton or wool pillow is a big improvement for your health. Check your pillow frequently for mold. Since you perspire so much at night, your pillows can get musty if they are not aired frequently: Air pillows in the sun when you can.

Mind Your Mattress
The chemicals in bedding that are most often cited as potential sources of concern are pesticides, herbicides, fire retardants, stain-resistance solvents and formaldehyde. Fire retardants are very common in polyurethane foam mattresses and cushions. Unless your mattress is pure organic wool, it probably has been treated with fire retardants. Wool is naturally fire resistant and less likely to have been chemically treated for this reason. When you’re shopping for a wool mattress, look for an organic wool mattress; most sheep are regularly dipped with pesticides to control parasites, so unless it was made with organic wool, you may be exposing yourself to pesticides in your mattress.

Feng Shui You Say?

Do you like to sleep with fresh air? For many of us, stuffy rooms don’t feel as good as rooms full of fresh air, so try as much as weather permits to open your windows. The earth element in the bedroom is a key component of restful sleep. Try using all-natural bedding that comes from the land and not the factory, and rest your bed on a wooden floor. The emotional watery element of dreams and intuition has a place in the bedroom too, and dream journals help to foster a connection to this world. And fire, of course, represents passion, light, and heat. Be sure to have all four elements included in your bedroom for the most peaceful rest and restorative sleep.

Night, night. Sleep tight!

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