As summer temperatures start to rise, getting a good night’s sleep can become quite difficult. It’s necessary to apply certain methods to fall asleep despite the heat. In this article, we share advice from a sleep specialist on how to improve your sleep during the hot summer months.
Sleep: Why is it hard to sleep during the summer?
Obviously, we are all eager to enjoy the beautiful weather that summer brings. However, with summer comes heat that we must contend with. In a few days, temperatures will surely rise, especially within our homes. Unfortunately, this means that we may have trouble sleeping. It’s important to note that heat and sleep aren’t exactly the best of friends.
In hotter countries, this doesn’t pose a problem. But in countries like France, it’s quite a different story. To understand this phenomenon, we need to examine thermoregulation. Simply put, for the body to fall asleep, it needs to cool down by about 0.5° C.
Unfortunately, achieving this drop in temperature during the summer is difficult. This means that getting good sleep during the summer can be challenging. Moreover, the vasodilatory effects of heat don’t make things easy. Once blood vessels dilate, blood circulation becomes hindered. This isn’t the case with cooler temperatures, which have vasoconstrictive effects.
In simpler terms, cooler temperatures slow down blood circulation, creating the perfect conditions for a good night’s sleep. For your information, the ideal bedroom temperature for good sleep is 17° C, which can be hard to achieve during summer. Thankfully, there are several solutions to achieve this condition despite the rise in temperatures.
How can you sleep despite the heat?
There are certain habits you can adopt to sleep better during the summer. For starters, try to ventilate your home if possible. Simply open windows that are not exposed to the heat. However, this can be difficult during a heatwave. If it’s not possible, there are devices that can help cool down your space.
You can always use a fan or air conditioning. Don’t hesitate to resort to these to sleep well during the summer. However, don’t overdo it. Also, make sure to close the blinds despite using air conditioning. This is necessary to create the optimal conditions for good quality sleep.
Dr Marc Rey, a neurologist and sleep specialist, offers additional insights. According to him, “It’s important to keep the room where you sleep as cool as possible”. He advises ventilating the room in the morning while avoiding sunlight during the day. Additionally, he recommends “refreshing yourself in the evening with a cool shower before going to bed”.
Using cooling sprays can also be effective for good sleep during the summer. At the same time, remember to turn off devices that can generate heat before going to bed. This includes televisions, computers, and tablets. Naturally, you should also minimize noise for a completely peaceful environment.
Sleep: What type of duvet should you use for good sleep?
To sleep well during a heatwave, you need to make wise food choices. Opt for light meals made of fruits and vegetables rich in water. Avoid heavy dishes that are rich in fats and sugars as they will only intensify the sensation of heat.
The choice of duvet is also crucial for good sleep during the hot summer months. According to the neurologist, you should use a duvet suitable for the season. Certain fabrics allow air to circulate easily. This helps to get rid of moisture and regulate body temperature simultaneously. The best choices are cotton or linen, or in other words, a hypoallergenic duvet.
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