In contrast with the rest of the world, New Zealand summer months are now approaching, and with it are memories of fun, beaches and…hot, sweaty nights.
Whether we like it or not, summer brings with it a sticky feel in the air, making it hard to get a good night’s sleep. Usually, this means having your clothes stick to your back and waking up feeling sweaty instead of rested.
One of the major reasons why it’s difficult to maintain a typical sleep schedule during summer days is that we are prone to overheating, where basic bodily functions are affected and dozing off becomes a real chore. So, in the middle of the night, you feel too hot to sleep.
If you’re finding it hard to get some quality shut-eye during these sweltering nights, don’t worry; we’ve got you covered. Here are some simple hacks to get some good sleep without sweating over it.
Drink a Glass of Water before Tucking In
We’ve all experienced going to sleep and waking up with our sheets drenched with sweat, especially on these hot nights. Caused by an increased body temperature, sweating can be more than uncomfortable.
Summers are synonymous with sweltering temperatures, often reaching as high as 35°C, with heat waves increasing dehydration-related sickness. Wherever you go, you’re guaranteed to feel the heat. The same can be said in the bedroom.
Sweating a lot while sleeping means that we are losing water. Water regulates body heat and is vital to the body functioning to the best of its abilities. If you allow yourself to get dehydrated, waking up drenched in the middle of the night will be the least of your worries.
Drink plenty of water throughout the day. Before sleeping, drink a cold glass of water to make sure that you have enough fluids to keep your body humming. Beyond that, cold water also works as an internal air-conditioner for keeping cool, lowering your core body temperature and allowing you to relax.
Take a Cold Shower before Sleeping
It might seem obvious, but taking a shower a few minutes before sleeping does wonders. Not only does it freshen you up, but it also lowers your internal temperature and calms you down after a long and hot day.
Cooling down allows the body to get into a more relaxed state, helping you get to the deep sleep stage faster. This can lead to faster rapid eye movement (REM) sleep or the dreaming stage. By reaching these stages in a short period of time, your body gets the rest it needs without being affected too much by the heat.
A cold shower also soothes and loosens tight muscles from a long day of being active, giving you better sleep despite the hot weather.
Do not underestimate the wellness brought by a good long shower. Freshening up before bed will help keep the sweat and humid feeling from disrupting your sleep. And by doing so right before bed, hopefully, you won’t need to wash off sweat with another shower in the morning!
Keep Your Bedroom Temperature Controlled
One good way of battling the summer temperature is keeping your room cool and breezy without letting heat in. This means that windows should be designed for breathability without allowing hot winds to get in and utilising air cons or fans. Keep an open window where the cool night breeze blows, and don’t keep windows closed to facilitate good air circulation.
Blackout curtains are good for blocking sunlight and maintaining a cool room temperature without running up the bill from continuous air conditioning. Installing them also helps you in keeping a regular sleep schedule and following your body’s natural circadian rhythm.
Using fans, either ceiling or floor-based types also helps in securing constant airflow and prevents the room from feeling stale, reducing any icky feelings during summertime.
Ice Is Your Best Friend
A good and budget-friendly way to get a good night’s sleep during summertime is to use ice packs or bags to control your temperature and stave off the heat.
Prepare one at around dinner time, and after taking a relaxing shower, take it out of the freezer and dab it on areas such as the nape of your neck, legs, and underarms to prevent your body from overheating during the middle of the night.
Ice cubes wrapped with a soft cloth can also take the place of a pack but make sure to dry yourself afterwards.
Make Your Bed Cool
Using thick bed linen or having heavy covers like a duvet makes you feel snuggly and cozy during cold evenings, but they are a bane in the summer. Choosing bed sheets and pillows that are soft and breathable is the way to go.
Rather than make you feel wrapped up, bamboo sheets designed to be soft, breathable, and durable should be your go-to covers, as they keep you comfy without making you sweat like crazy. Beyond the comfort, these sheets are eco-friendly, so you can sleep with a clean conscience.
Sometimes, your choices before bedtime matter too. You sweat like crazy if you sleep in thick clothes instead of pyjamas. Or if you enjoy a hot, spicy dish before bed. Or if you love cuddling up to your precious significant other. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that!)
But small temporary changes should also be made for better comfort in bed. Avoid spicy foods before sleeping. Change into light PJs. And spread yourselves out on the bed. All of these will help you keep cool and maximise the airflow in the bedroom, allowing you better sleep on a summer night.
Get That Summer Shut-Eye!
While it may seem tempting to rely on round-the-clock air-conditioning and the thermostat to fight the summer heat, especially during bedtime, there are other cost and nature-friendly ways to do so.
With these simple steps and tricks, you won’t have to dread going to bed on stuffy nights. Rather, get ready to face the new day without waking up with sweat-stained sheets. Say goodbye to feeling stuffy and look forward to relaxing nights ahead!