When summer is in full swing, our focus is on picnics, days lounging on the beach and tasty iced drinks.
But hot weather has a downside side too. We’re talking about when intense heat and humidity make it impossible to sit comfortably, let alone sleep through the night.
Most Australians say their sleep habits are affected by the weather, with many losing sleep due to overheating and waking up in the night because of the heat.
In order for us to get a good night’s sleep, there needs to be a fractional temperature difference between our body and our brain – a warm body and a cool head. When the outdoor temperature rises this becomes difficult but there are plenty of things you can do to beat the heat. We have listed our top tips below:
Evaluate your sleeping clothes – it’s important to consider not just the amount of clothing that you wear to bed, but the materials the clothing is made of as well. Some materials, such as cotton, breathe much better than other materials, such as polyester or lycra. When your clothing doesn’t breathe it holds in the temperature and will continue to keep you warm throughout the night. If this causes you to be too hot while you sleep, you should consider something that may be specifically designed for sleeping.
Circulate air flow – if the air in your bedroom stops flowing, you can overheat while you are sleeping. Adding either a floor or a ceiling fan can circulate the air through your room to help prevent you from overheating while you sleep. For an extra benefit, you could aim the fan close to your bed so you feel the cool air as it circulates around your room.
Adjust your covers according to the season – if you use the same quilt or comforter year-round, now is the time to re-evaluate. You should have a lightweight blanket or throw for the warmer months and something a little heavier for the colder months. Your bedding is critical in keeping you comfortable while you sleep, so it is important to determine what would be best for you for each season. It is possible that a top sheet may even be sufficient in the summertime. The material your sheets are made out of can also influence your comfort while you sleep. Cotton, as with your PJs, breathes much better than flannel or satin sheets.
Don’t forget to also keep hydrated. Tossing and turning and sweating at night can result in dehydration, so make sure you aren’t going to bed thirsty.