While we all love the summer, with long, lazy days spent outside and lots of alfresco meals, there’s a downside to everything! When the days are hot, the nights are often still and airless, making it difficult to sleep. When temperatures remain high, our brains don’t get the ‘feeling sleepy’ signals that they do in cooler weather and can find it hard to switch off – not to mention the fact that dawn can come very early indeed!
Here are our top five tips for sleeping soundly when temperatures rocket:
- Make your room dark. We love natural daylight and sun – we just don’t love it in our eyes at 4.30am! Ideally, install blackout blinds or curtains in your bedroom. Not only will they keep the light out, if you close them during the day they will also keep temperatures down. If new window dressings aren’t an option, then a sleep mask is the next best thing.
- Go to bed cool. If you lower your body temperature before going to bed, you can increase your chances of falling asleep comfortably. Take a cold shower, spritz your sheets with cold water or take a few sips of iced water before you retire for the night.
- Cotton is king. Manmade fabrics such as nylon and polyester will do you no favours in the heat! They’re not breathable and will trap the warmth in and make you feel clammy and uncomfortable. There’s only one way to go in the summer and that’s cotton – a cool, breathable fabric which will naturally help you regulate your body temperature. Choose lightweight summer pyjamas and team them with cotton bed linen.
- Get yourself a fan. We tend not to have the type of summers in the UK that warrant installing air conditioning, but a fan in the bedroom can be useful. It won’t lower the air temperature as such but it will provide a cooling current and help you feel more comfortable. Look for one that swivels so that the air flow isn’t directed at a single point and you’ll also need one that’s quiet!
- Have some quiet time. In addition to being brighter, summer mornings also tend to be noisier! Birdsong can be surprisingly loud if it’s just outside your window. Ear plugs or special noise-cancelling headphones designed for sleeping may be well worth the investment if you find yourself listening to the dawn chorus a little more regularly than you’d like.