One of the key components to having good physical and mental health is to get a good night of sleep every night.
Even though many fall asleep with lights on, the television on, or even just the radio on, those noises can actually hurt more than they can help.
The benefits of wearing a sleep mask are simple: because it creates a dark environment, your body can fall asleep more quickly and stay asleep longer.
Would a Sleep Mask Help Me Have a Lucid Dream?
A sleep mask can often help with the lucidity of a dream because it can solve a myriad of problems that people often face when they try to have a lucid dream. Sleep masks:
- block artificial light sources that disrupt Circadian rhythms;
- prevent signals from interacting with your optic centers that can disrupt dream recall;
- increase the amount of false wake-ups during the night; and
- allow for an easy way to slip into a deep meditative state.
The importance of Circadian rhythms: The human body longs for routine from the moment it wakes up to the moment you fall asleep and temporarily loses access to the conscious mind. The more an established pattern can be developed, the happier it will be! That’s why people can get up at the same time every morning without an alarm clock, unconsciously drive to a familiar location while thinking they are going somewhere else, and even grab milk instead of coffee from the fridge.
Humans are defined by habit and that’s why the benefits of wearing a sleep mask are so great. Because a sleep mask creates a better environment for sleep and the chance to have a lucid dream, owning one almost becomes a necessary part of the process.
Chemical changes in the brain could stop dream remembrance. When you wake up in the morning, the optic nerve engages. This engagement creates a chemical reaction within the brain that really can lead to the immediate loss of dream memories. Though the benefits of a sleep mask won’t completely stop this from happening, it can help take the focus away from seeing what is going on in the room around you and back toward the dreams you’ve had during the night before, increasing the chances of memory retention.
False wake-ups are critical to have a lucid dream experience. When you’re in the habit of performing a reality check throughout the day, a false awakening gives you the perfect chance to test for reality. When you can determine that you’re in a dream state instead of a state of reality, you can then exercise control over the dream to have a lucid dream. If you do happen to full waken, you can still do a reality check by testing the sleep mask. Either way, you win.
Removing distractions will always lead to a better meditative state. Perhaps the best benefits of wearing a sleep mask involve the ability to quickly move into a meditative state. Especially for those just starting with meditation, the most difficult component of the practice is to eliminate the distractions in the environment.
From little bells ringing to the sounds of the wind outside, it becomes very tempting to open an eye to make a safety check! The sleep mask takes away the optic distractions, giving people one more opportunity to focus on breathing, the brainwave entrainment they’re listening to, or other one item.
What Sleep Mask Should I Use?
The benefits of wearing a sleep mask can be best achieved when the mask itself is very comfortable and feels like a natural part of the sleeping process. For that reason, you will want to try on several different masks if possible to determine which one provides the best solution for you.
There are several styles of sleep masks on the marketing today:
Contoured: Contoured masks do a better job of fitting the shape of someone’s face by incorporating a curve and a nose piece into the mask design. They are built solidly so that they can be stored without getting creases in them and many of them are machine washable. The issue that some people have with a contoured sleep mask is that they can be a little too big, thus unable to block out all of the light necessary to have a lucid dream.
- Chambered: One of the immediate drawbacks to using a sleep mask is that it can interfere with you physically. Some masks put pressure down on your eyes or happen to confine your eyelashes in some way. Chambered sleep masks help you to have a lucid dream because they have specially designed pockets within the mask that prevent bothersome physical interference. This creates a natural, dark world.
- Foam: Flexibility is often a key component of a good sleep mask, but none are as flexible as the sleep masks that are foam-based. These sleep masks can also be folded, are flexible enough to conform to your face. The benefits of a sleep mask can really be seen with one of these because they are often more individually based, but that also means you’ll need to try one on to see if it can properly conform to you.
- Goggles: Believe it or not, goggles can also make an effective sleep mask when they are properly darkened. Many sleep-therapy systems are based on a goggles or glasses design, and because so many people wear some form of glasses throughout the day, sleeping with a set just seems like a natural component of life. The one negative of these goggle-based systems is primarily directed at those who may toss and turn a lot at night – pressure from them can cause multiple wake-ups.
The benefits of wearing a sleep mask are difficult to ignore. If you’re trying to have a lucid dream, but are finding the entire process difficult and mostly unsuccessful, then why not invest in a comfortable sleep mask today? It could be the one missing component that you need to have a memorable lucid dream!
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