“In the summertime when the weather is hot, you toss and turn ‘til the sun comes up …” Wait, is that not how that Mungo Jerry song goes? If you’ve ever tried to sleep during a summer heat wave, to you, those reimagined lyrics may sound all too relatable.
Hot temperatures can impact your sleep in different ways. The discomfort of a too-toasty bedroom can not only make it harder to fall asleep, but once you finally get to sleep, it can also affect your ability to stay asleep and even affect how you dream.
Why? Your body temperature dips naturally to initiate sleep and stays cool throughout the night (Learn more about what happens to your body during the four stages of sleep). If your room is too warm, it can make it harder for your body to reach its desired sleeping temperature.
In fact, according to the National Sleep Foundation, the ideal room temperature for sleep seems to lie between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit. If your thermostat is set within these temps, it will be much easier to drift off to sleep (and stay asleep). If your thermostat is set higher or lower than those temperatures, it could lead to restlessness, which can affect your sleep quality.
Overtime, too many low-quality snooze seshes can significantly affect your health and wellbeing. Learn more about the ways your body suffers when you skimp on sleep.
While you may not be able to change the weather outside, there are things you can do to help you stay cool inside. Here are ways to turn down the temp in your bedroom so you can get the sleep you need:
Invest in air conditioning. The best time to buy an air conditioning unit is during the cooler months. Due to supply and demand, low-priced air conditioners are usually hard to find during a heat wave.
Prevent heat build-up in your bedroom. While you’re away during the day, close all windows and blinds to block the sun and hot air from coming in.
Take a shower or bath before bed. Water is great at cooling the body down.
Keep a fan in your bedroom. Next level: Try one that sprays a fine mist or put an ice pack in front of the fan to cool the air.
Wear light bed clothes (or go naked!). Pick pajamas made from materials that wick away sweat, such as polyester or nylon. Even better, sleep in your birthday suit. (Check out these health benefits of going commando while you sleep.)
Freeze a damp washcloth and use as a cold compress when needed.
Stay hydrated. Sweating can cause you to lose fluids and electrolytes, so sip throughout the day and keep water by the bed to replenish.
Wear SPF during the day. A sunburn can make it even harder to sleep in the heat. Got sizzled by the sun? Here are ways to treat a bad sunburn.
The temperatures outside may creep, but with these tips you’ll be fast asleep. Want more sleep-improving tips? Here are 11 doctor-approved tips to help you sleep better tonight. Also, check out these sleep-helping products.