Body temperature when you’re sleeping is about as important as the type of mattress and pillow you sleep on. Many Americans suffer from sleeping problems related to waking up a few hours after falling asleep – one of the reasons may be because your sleeping environment is too hot or too cold.
Importance of Temperature
Both your body temperature and the ambient temperature affects the quality of your sleep. As Dr. H. Craig Heller states in this article, “When you go to sleep, your set point for body temperature – the temperature your brain tries to achieve – goes down by 2 or 3 degrees Fahrenheit.” Acting as an internal thermostat, if it’s too cold or too hot in the room you’re sleeping in, the body struggles to reach that set point.
It’s this slight drop in body temperature that helps induce sleep. If your bedroom is cooler, it’s generally easier for this to happen. But if the room is too hot or too cold, you’re more likely to wake up a few hours after falling asleep. The quality of your REM sleep can be affected if you’re waking up often during the night because you’re not spending enough time in this stage of sleep. REM sleep is necessary for emotional health, feeling rejuvenated, restoring the body’s physical functions, and many other factors related to overall health.
Ideal Sleeping Environment
In order to create an ideal sleeping environment, treat your bedroom as a serene, relaxing place. Try to keep electronics out of the bedroom as much as possible, especially when settling down for the night. Research has shown that the blue light given off by smartphones and laptops impedes with your body’s natural ability to sleep because it suppresses the body’s natural production of melatonin, a sleep-inducing hormone. More information about this topic can be viewed in the video below –
Create a cave-like environment in your bedroom – make sure it is dark, cool, and quiet. Sometimes fans are helpful for generating white noise which can be soothing as it blocks out sudden variations in noise – like a barking dog – that can wake you during the night otherwise. Using a fan generates ventilation and helps to lower the temperature in your bedroom as well.
Ideal Sleeping Temperature
According to sleep.org, the ideal sleeping temperature is between 60 and 67 degrees. A range is given because there is no one temperature that works for everyone – what may be too cold for one person is perfect or too hot for others. To find what temperature works for you, you’ll have to do a little experimenting. If you’re waking up too hot during the night, consider lowering the thermostat a few degrees. If you wake up too cold, you may need to raise the thermostat a degree or two. Be careful with raising or lowering the thermostat too drastically – sometimes, especially with central air conditioning units, a degree or two is all it takes to make a big difference.