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How to sleep in hot weather when you don’t have air conditioning

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Recent news stories tell us that the hot weather in the summer is here to stay and we are going to experience more heat extremes.  I don’t know about you but this summer was so uncomfortable for sleeping that my sleep was very poor.  Unfortunately we need the right temperature if we are to have an ideal night’s sleep.

What is the ideal temperature for sleeping?  Well the theory is that your bedroom temperature should be between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit for the best sleep.  Indeed our body starts to reduce in temperature as we are going in to sleep mode so if your bedroom is too hot then your body will find it hard to start to get itself ready for sleep. If we don’t have our bedroom at the right temperature then our quality of sleep is poor and it has an effect on how we feel the next morning. If you want to find out more about the different stages of sleep then head over to my post about sleep stages to read more. 

Cotton sheets will make all the difference in keeping you cool

What is strange about hot and cold weather is that we can heat ourselves up when it is cold by putting on the heating or an extra layer but it is so harder to cool ourselves down when it is too warm.  I can remember a recent holiday where the weather was really hot, we spent most of our time trying to find shade or eating in air conditioned restaurants! 

Having a good night’s sleep is so important for us, it’s a chance for our body to repair and re-balance both mentally and physically.  That is why temperature is so important and why we really need help when the temperature is too hot. 

If you don’t have air con then read on to find 20 ways to help you get a good night’s sleep when it’s hot…

1. Place your pillow case in a bag and put in the freezer 10 minutes before you head to bed. This will keep your temperature down while you get to sleep.

2. Water bottles are not just for winter, fill it with iced water and place it in the bed.  You can move it to where you want to keep cool such as your knees, your upper body or your arms.  You can also use several water bottles and put these at strategic places on your bed. 

3. During the hot spell keep your body moisturizer in the fridge.  Each night before bed put it on, although using aloe vera or something similar will keep your temperature down more than your usual brand. 

4. Purchase some small spray bottles and fill with cold water.  Use these throughout the night to spray your face if you waken up feeling hot.

Cold as ice is probably not what you are aiming for but putting ice close by a fan will help!

5. The best pyjamas or night dress should be cotton and thin, also use cotton sheets for your bed, I highly recommend you sleep between cotton on the base of your bed and a cotton sheet, this will keep you cool and the cotton is breathable, meaning you won’t sweat as much.

6. Make sure you don’t over eat going to bed as this can increase your metabolism and have your body trying to burn off what you have eaten, meaning you will be warmer!

7. Refrain from exercising too close to bed time as your body may not cool down in time and your metabolism could be still working at your exercise rate, causing you to remain hot. 

8. Enjoy a cool shower before bed time to lower your body temperature.  Don’t go too low though as your body will react if it is too cold!

9. During the daytime, keep your bedroom curtains closed to keep your bedroom cool ready for when it’s time for going to sleep.

10. Did you know that your electrical devices can emit heat?  Switch them off so the room is as cool as it can be. 

Keeping our feet cool is the way to go!

11. keeping you feet cool will help the rest of you stay cool so whether use a water bottle with ice or keep them out from the sheets to keep them cool. 

12. If you have a circular fan, then put a pot of ice in front of it, it will pick up the coolness of the ice and circulate it throughout the room. 

13. Keep iced water by the bed in case you waken up feeling warm.

14. If it gets really hot, consider sleeping in a separate room from your partner as two bodies will generate more heat than one.

15. If you have room, you could put up a camp bed downstairs as it is often cooler downstairs as heat rises.

Stay hydrated but don’t drink too close to bedtime otherwise you will be running to the loo all night!

16. Before getting in to bed, run cold water over your wrists as this will cool you down.  You could also try the same with your feet. 

17.  Get the right pillow.  As your head is the hottest part of your body you could decide to get a pillow that keeps it cool.  The problem with our conventional pillows is that it surrounds your head and traps the heat.  You cold opt for buckwheat pillows which helps air circulate around your head plus it has excellent support too. 

18.  You could purchase the Chillow, which is a blue memory foam pad that you place inside your on pillow which is filled with hi-tech material which cools you during the night. 

19.  Sleep like an Egyptian. This is so-called as it requires you to cover your body in a sheet.  First you soak the sheet in water but make sure it’s not dripping! when you get in to bed cover yourself with the damp sheet.  It works the same way that sweating works.  It cools your body down.  However you do need to keep your window open to allow the air to circulate to make the most of this method. 

20.  Stay away from alcohol.   Having a lovely G&T often goes hand in hand with the summer, however drinking alcohol too close to bed can heat you up, make you feel dehydrated and can even exacerbate the feeling of being hot.  While you can stay away from alcohol, if you can’t then limit the intake especially coming close to bed time. 

So there you have it, 20 ways to help you stay cool and get a good night’s sleep during the hot weather.   However, I would point out no single tip is foolproof.   You may need to use a few for reducing the room temperature and reducing your body temperature.  I hope when you do try some of these out that you will achieve some comfort and you will be able to have a good night’s sleep during the hot weather. 

Happy dreaming. 

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top tips for sleeping in hot weather without air con


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