We’ve all had nights where we can’t sleep because it’s just too hot, or the heat can make it difficult to stay asleep. Summer is just starting, so now is the time to figure out a cooler sleeping arrangement.
A small study suggests that a decline in body temperature before going to bed may initiate sleep faster. As in, you’ll be able to fall asleep quicker and enter into the deeper stages of sleep. So, keeping your bedroom cool during the hotter months will help.
The best temperature to sleep at, says Dr. Christopher Winter, is 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit (15-19 degrees celsius), so check your thermostat and kick it down a few degrees to give yourself the best atmosphere to sleep in.
Sleeping cool may also help you burn more calories and can make you more sensitive to insulin, according to the New York Times.
Airflow is another incredibly important aspect of a good night’s sleep. People who sleep with good ventilation may perform better on logic tasks than those in stuffy rooms. If you can, prop open a window or open your door. If you have a fan, you can place a tray of ice cubes in front of it to cool the air as it circulates the room.
Dark curtains can also help keep the sun out during the day and keep the room cooler overall. They also help you sleep if you keep them on through the night because they are blocking out any light pollution from city lights or headlights.
If you’re worried about privacy, you can have two sets of curtains – one that blocks out the sun, keeping the room cooler during the day, and one that is sheer but obscures what happens in the room.
If you tend to sleep hot, try a mattress that offers cooling options, or doesn’t collect a lot of heat. Traditional innerspring mattresses are great at heat dissipation. Memory foam mattresses and mattress toppers might not be the best option since they tend to trap heat. You can check out cooling mattress toppers as an option.
Adding natural bedding, like sheets and comforters made of bamboo or linen, is also helpful to keep you cool while you sleep, and make your room feel cozy, but not stifling.
A bedroom should be a calming and relaxing refuge within a home.
While plants won’t necessarily help bring the temperature down, they will, according to NASA, improve the air quality. Plants like the peace lily, devil’s ivy, and the spider plant are great options for a bedroom, and not difficult to care for.
Tidying up your room and decluttering can also help you sleep better. Make sure nothing is covering your air vents or blocking air from getting to you. With cleaning, there’s more room for air to flow in the bedroom, leading to better air quality.
Take the time to evaluate your bedroom to see if the heat is harming your sleep quality. If it is, you can take some of these steps to make the room less stuffy and more restful.
By Ellie Porter