Summer sleeping tips – Part 2
In the previous post, we looked at some of the more conventional steps you can take to make sure you get a comfortable night's sleep during a heatwave. The tips included sleeping on a bed that was large enough so you didn't feel the body heat from your partner, choosing a bed that had natural fillings that let air circulate better, keeping the bedroom cool and selecting bed clothes that are not man-made.
In this week's post, we'll list some of the more unusual ways that people have suggested of keeping cool at night, which will hopefully lead you to have a better night's sleep.
Do-it-yourself air conditioning
In some parts of the world, an air conditioning unit is an essential part of the house, but here in the UK, we have less need for them, except for the odd week during the year. So, rather than outlay a vast amount of money for something that will rarely be used the DIY AC unit involves a fan, a shallow tray, some water and ice cubes. Place the tray filled with water and ice below the fan and the breeze from the fan will pick up the colder air coming out of the tray and disperse it through the room.
Another technique to get colder air into the room is to hang a cold damp sheet in front of the window and allow any breeze to push through it and deliver colder air into the bedroom. It's not something we've tried ourselves, and I'm not sure I want to see water dripping onto the bedroom floor. A method that is less extreme is to put a damp towel on points of the body where veins are quite close to the surface such as wrists, ankles and the forehead. It will feel like it's making the blood cooler which will reduce how hot your feel.
We've all heard of a hot water bottle, so why not experiment with a cold water bottle. The same principle applies but rather than filling it with boiling water pour ordinary tap water in and freeze it. Then, 20 minutes or so before going to bed, put the cold water bottle under the sheets to create a cooler sleeper surface.
Plant a tree
This one will take several years to have any impact and it may end up spoiling the view from your bedroom but planting a tree between your bedroom and the direction of the sun can mean that when the sun is at its strongest during the day, your bedroom will be cast in shade, thus, lowering the temperature of the room.
A hot shower
It's a debate that still rages on but some have suggested that taking a warm shower in the evening before bed can help you stay cooler at night. The thinking being that a) when you step out of the shower into the colder air you will feel colder and b) if you take a cold shower then your body will work harder to warm itself up. We're not sure which side of the temperature gauge we come down on, so perhaps it's like choosing a bed where personal preference is the only way to decide.
Lower the bed
We all know that heat rises so in theory sleeping closer to the floor should be cooler. This is great news for those people who have selected one of our slim line base divans. Perhaps you could go a step further and move your bedroom to a lower level or even the basement to find the coolest part of the house.
Having a big meal before going to bed is never recommended as the body needs time to metabolise all the food, but in hot temperatures, this can also increase the body's temperature. If the body is working harder to break down a big meal, then it's temperature will rise. Opting for smaller 'lighter' meals will reduce the likelihood of this happening. Also, let's not forget, a large meal will normally require being cooked in an oven and you don't want to be standing in front of one of those in a heatwave.
Alcohol is not that refreshing
It might seem like a good idea to have a glass or two of wine or other alcoholic drink in the evening sun, but if you have too much of it then it can leave you dehydrated during the night which will lead to you feeling hotter. Instead, select water as your pre-bedtime drink so that you're not left gasping during the night.
Get cold feet
Not proverbially, but literally. There's several crazy ideas out there on how to do this, including freezing some sleeping socks and wearing them to bed, although we think this probably a little too extreme. Instead, try placing them in a bowl of iced water by the bed and then re-dunking them throughout the night whenever you start to feel hot.
There's tech out there
We don't advocate using electronic technology in the bedroom and thankfully the 'chillow' offers a cooling surface without freezing or plugging it in. We can't tell you how effective it's going to be as we haven't used it ourselves but it's good to see that there are inventive people out there who are trying to solve the hot sleeper's needs.
Change your hair style
Another one of the more extreme measures but a change of hair style could help you sleep better in the summer. If you have long hair and it's draped around your neck at night, then that can make you feel warmer. Shorten your hair or maybe try tying it up at night so that it's away from the skin.
We understand that many of these suggestions are simple hearsay and this article is purely for entertainment. However, if you do find yourself struggling to sleep at night, regardless of the temperature outside, then perhaps it is time to consider a new bed, and if that is the case then speaking to one of the UK's premier suppliers of luxury beds is surely a good place to start.