Keeping your sleep cool when summer starts heating up the nights
As summer comes peeking around the corner of spring, we’re all thinking of the fun, sun and long warm nights ahead of us. Funny how we all forget how those long warm nights go from blissful relaxation on the patio to torture when trying to fall asleep.
If you find yourself without the luxury of air conditioning this summer – or prefer to save money (and the planet) by going without – we’ve got 10 terrific ways to keep your sleep cool. No matter how hot it gets.
1. Think about your sheets. To sleep cool, choose lighter colored bed sheets in breathable fabrics, such as cotton or linen. When the heat spikes, you’ll be thankful for air flow in between the sheets where you need it most.
2. Adjust your nighttime wardrobe. When the temperature rises, our need for clothing coverage lowers. Go all out and snooze in your birthday suit or choose loose, cotton pajamas that allow for ventilation to help keep you cool.
3. Make your fans work for you. So many tips for fans in your bedroom!
- Place your fan facing the window so it pulls hot air from your bedroom to the outdoors. This will also create a gentle breeze around your sleeping area for additional cooling.
- Adjust your ceiling fan to rotate counter-clockwise to pull hot air up and out of the room instead of just pushing it around.
- If you prefer a fan facing you, place a bowl or pan of ice in front of it. The blowing air will take the coolness from the ice as it melts and mist it on you while you sleep.
- Create a glorious world of swirling air with a cross-breeze by placing a fan across from an open window.
- Need to create more of your own cool breeze? Set up multiple fans throughout the room to make your sleeping sanctuary more comfortable.
4. Bring cool down tools to bed.
- Fill your hot water bottle with water in the morning and place it in the freezer. By the time you’re ready for shut eye, you’ll have a chilled ice pack to cool your feet while you sleep.
- Fill a sock with rice, tie it off and place it in the freezer for at least an hour. Pull it out just before bed and it should stay cool for 30 minutes, hopefully enough time for you to fall asleep.
5. Close the kitchen and cook your food outdoors. There’s no denying that turning on the stove or oven heats up the whole house. Use social media to hunt down meals you can serve cold or at room temperature, like yummy summer salads. And then move outside to grill – who doesn’t love a BBQ? Eating heavy items such as steak causes your body to produce more heat than if you were to eat fruits or veggies, so be mindful of what you chow down on before bed.
6. Unplug & go dark earlier in the evening. Part of this tip is self-explanatory. Turn off your lights closer to bedtime to limit the heat in your bedroom. Also, turn off all your electronics and TV 30 minutes before you hop in bed. This will help you keep cool by not having a warm device in your hands, and help you fall asleep faster without the distraction of technology.
7. Sleep solo (or at least further apart). You may have to kick your loved one out of bed, but if the heat is keeping you both awake, staying cool and sleeping is more beneficial than cuddling up at this point. When you sleep with a partner, they’re adding body heat to the sheets and mattress and there’s nothing sexy – or healthy – about sweaty sheets. If you have a whole mattress to yourself, you’ll be able to stretch and spread out like a starfish, allowing air to flow around your body and limiting the potential perspiration.
8. Give yourself cold feet. Your feet are highly sensitive and contain many pulse points in the feet and ankles. Cool down your whole body by dipping your feet in cold ice cold water. Before bed, fill a tub with ice water and soak your dogs until you’re cool enough to sleep.
9. Indulge your pulses. To chill down fast, place an ice pack on your pulse points such as your wrists, neck, elbows, ankles and behind the knees.
10. Allow the chill to cascade like a waterfall. If you can’t bring down the temperature of the room, bring down your body temperature. Take a cold shower to rinse off sweat and drop your core temp a few degrees. Dry off and hop in bed, clean and cool.
11. Bonus: Stay hydrated. Combating the heat isn’t always just a battle of temperature – consistent sweating can cause dehydration. In the early evening, be sure to drink at least 8 ounces of water to keep yourself hydrated. Be careful about drinking too much H2O right before bed as you don’t want to wake up throughout the night to use the bathroom.
Rest well & wake up ready to go!
Better sleep gives rise to better mornings, bringing your goals into focus and dreams within reach. Hungry for more sleep info? Dig into these posts:
- Learn how to sleep like an athlete
- Will exercise help you sleep better?
- Kick start energy levels & squash daytime fatigue