From the snuggliness of a pillow to sharing a bed, there are lots of things that affect how well we sleep. And our sleeping temperature is, well, a biggie.
We don’t know about you, but getting the temperature right while we sleep is no mean feat. That’s why we picked the brains of our trusty sleep expert Dave Gibson.
sleeping temperature: the basics
do we need to be cold for sleep?
You’re not alone if you’ve been left staring at the ceiling on a hot night. And you’d be forgiven for thinking that creating a chilly sleep environment is the way to get top notch sleep.
Curiously, it’s best to aim somewhere in the middle. According to Dave,
The ideal temperature is around 18.3C. If a bedroom is stuffy, this can affect sleep quality and decrease the amount of REM sleep. Whereas when a bedroom is too cold - like below 13 degrees - it will keep you awake.
how does temperature affect sleep?
What’s the sciency bit behind it?
To sleep, we need our body temperature to cool down. Which is why hotter rather than colder bedrooms tend to keep us awake more often, ” adds Dave.“Really, it depends on our body clock. Each of our body clocks regulates essential functions like when we wake and fall asleep. And as the body clock takes cues from environmental factors, like light, it’s no surprise that temperature can affect it. That’s why a dark, cool room helps facilitate optimum sleep - and a bright, stuffy one does not.
the perfect bedroom compromise
If you have a sleep partner, it can feel tricky to get the temperature quite right. Whether it’s your other half or a furry friend you’ve got in tow, a hotter bed can be a result of tossy-turner or heat radiating from your sleep partner. Making sure you have a movement-resistant mattress could help. As could a split tog duvet that could just be the yin to your bed sharer’s yang (ooo err).
what else affects how well we sleep?
Toasty temps aside, light is the next biggest thing that can impact how well we sleep. So making sure you block it all out is the easiest way to a great night’s kip. And after that, food, exercise, comfort and our wind down routine all have a part to play.