5 Scientifically proven methods to sleep better in Summer
As temps heat up are you having trouble winding down? We’ve spoken before about the impact that sleep has on your health1 but in summer it can often be easier said than done. Here’s how to set yourself up for sleeping success.
Warm temps and sticky humidity is one of the biggest challenges when it comes to a blissful snooze on a balmy summer night. A 2012 study by HVAC&R Research2 found that temperature played a significant role in sleep quality, it concluded that 23°C was the optimal temperature for a good night’s sleep. If you can't control the temperature of your room to the exact degree with air conditioning then it’s important to use a fan to stimulate air flow.
Take a cue from nature and sync your body clock to sunlight. Summer means early sunrises and late sunsets, use this time to synchronize your sleep routine with the rising sun. Being exposed to natural light first thing in the morning helps regulate your circadian rhythm and gives the body a natural cue to wake up3.
Snooze tip: Take advantage of natural light and leave the blinds open so your body can use the sun as an alarm clock.
For the same reason it’s important to switch off your tech well before you hit the snooze button. The blue light radiating from your smartphone and electronic devices suppresses melatonin or our sleep hormone making it harder for you to switch off4.
Snooze tip: Switch off any electronic devices like smartphones and televisions at least 60 minutes before bed.
Shalini Paruthi, assistant professor of pediatrics and internal medicine at Saint Louis University5 warns that sleep ins actually do more harm than good, "people who sleep in on a Sunday morning may not be sleepy by their usual bedtime on Sunday evening, which can make waking up on Monday difficult. This can throw off the week's schedule," she explains. "When possible, it is best to try to get to bed and get up at the same time (at least within an hour) seven days a week" Paruthi recommends.
Snooze tip: Avoid the weekend sleep in and opt for a siesta!
Summer brings festivities and frivolity but if you’re looking for a peaceful doze, don’t be tempted by booze, coffee and midnight snacks. Caffeine and sugar wreaks havoc on your sleep, so whilst a nightcap sounds like a great idea it could have the opposite effect.
Snooze tip: Switch your late night wine for a herbal tea.
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