With temperatures rising across much of the UK this week, many people are grappling with the challenge of getting a good night’s sleep.
But there are things you can do to beat the heat.
1. Avoid naps
Hot weather can make us feel a bit lethargic during the day as we use more of the energy in our bodies to regulate our internal temperature.
But if you have trouble sleeping at night, try to avoid daytime naps. Because when it’s hot, drowsiness can be precious – so save it for bedtime in the evening.
2. Keep the routine
Warm weather can encourage you to change your daily habits and routine. Don’t do it. Because it can contribute to your sleep disorder.
Try to stick to your regular bedtime and routine. Keep doing the things you usually do before you go to sleep.
3. Remember the basics
Take steps to make sure your bedroom is as cool as possible at night.
During the day I draw all kinds of curtains to keep the sunlight out of the bedrooms. And be sure to close the windows on the sunny side of your home to keep hot air out.
And open all the windows, at night before you sleep, to breathe in the place and let in the air.
4. Use thin sheets
Reduce your bed sheets while keeping the covers close and close. Thin cotton sheets absorb sweat.
No matter how warm it is in your bedroom, your body temperature will drop during the night. That’s why we sometimes wake up cold.
5. Cool your socks
Using a small fan can make sense in hot weather, especially when it’s humid.
Because it encourages the evaporation of sweat and makes it easier for your body to regulate your internal temperature.
If you don’t have a fan, try filling a hot water bottle (which some use when it’s cold in the winter) with ice liquid and use it to cool you down.
Alternatively, if this is not possible, cool the socks in the fridge and put them on. Because cooling your feet lowers the overall temperature of your skin and body.
6. Drink enough fluids
Drink enough water throughout the day, but avoid very large amounts before bedtime.
You may not want to wake up thirsty – but you certainly don’t want to go to the bathroom in the early hours of your sleep either.
7. Think about what you drink
Be careful with cold drinks. Many contain large amounts of caffeine, which stimulates the central nervous system and makes us feel more alert and alert.
Also, avoid drinking too much alcohol. Many people drink more when the weather is hot.
Alcohol may help us sleep, but it encourages early morning awakenings and lowers overall sleep quality.
How do high temperatures affect the body?
Drought: Drink enough water to make up for lost through urination, sweating and breathing.
ahigh body temperature: This can be especially problematic for those with heart or breathing problems. Its symptoms include tingling of the skin, headache and nausea.
Fatigue This happens when you start losing water or salt from your body. Feeling faint, weak or having muscle spasms are just some of the symptoms.
heat stroke: Once your body temperature reaches 40 degrees Celsius or higher, you can get heat stroke. The indications are similar to heat stress but the person may lose consciousness, dry out the skin and stop sweating.
8. Keep calm
If you have trouble falling asleep, do something that calms you down. Try reading, writing or even arranging your clothes.
Just make sure you don’t play with your phone or video games – blue light makes us feel less sleepy and play stimulates activity.
Go back to bed when you feel sleepy.
9. Think of the children
Babies usually sleep regularly and deeply – but they can be very sensitive to changes in the family’s ‘mood’ and routine.
Make sure you don’t change your usual bedtime and shower routine just because it’s hot.
As part of a bedtime routine, the UK National Medical Services website recommends taking lukewarm baths. Make sure it’s not too cold, as this will stimulate your circulation (this is your body’s way of keeping warm).
A child cannot tell you if he feels too hot or too cold, so it is important to monitor his temperature. Babies sleep best when the temperature is between 16 and 20 degrees Celsius.
You can install a thermometer where the child sleeps, or check by touching his forehead, back or stomach to see if he feels warm.
10. Don’t think about it Much
Most of us need about seven to eight hours of quality sleep each night to function properly.
But remember that most people can function quite well after a night or two of restless sleep.
Although you may yawn a little more often than usual, you should be fine.
These tips are based on suggestions from Professor Kevin Morgan, former director of the Clinical Sleep Research Unit at Loughborough University, and Lisa Artis of the Sleep Research Council. This article was first published in July 2019.