How to get a good night’s sleep when it’s hot

Struggling to sleep in the hot weather? Check out our tips for getting to sleep in a heatwave...

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by Ellie Wiseman |

While us Brits are of course thrilled that the sun is shining, we are a tad unequipped to cope with hot summer temperatures - especially when it comes to bedtime.

Getting a good night's sleep in a heatwave is, quite simply, a gruelling task, the result of which is a nation of sweaty and stressed starfishing sleepers.

If you have yet to run to Argos to buy yourself a large fan for your bedside, have some tricks of how to beat the heat and stay cool all through the night.

Good luck!

Ways to get a good night's sleep in a heatwave


CLOSER 16 tips for getting a good night's sleep in a heatwave - STACKED

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Flip the conventions of the hot water bottle and make it a multi-seasonal treat. Fill up your hot water bottle with cold water, put it in the freezer for a few hours, put the cover back on, and take it to bed with you. The compression will last for at least a couple of hours, leaving you with enough time to drift off to sleep in the cool.

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If you feel like you could fry an egg on your skin, it might be time to get creative with your cooling techniques; putting your pyjamas in a carrier bag and popping them into the freezer for 20 minutes or so might just do the trick.

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Similarly, putting your bed sheets into a carrier bag and freezing them for a while will work wonders for lowering your temperature in bed.

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Ditch the satin, silk, or polyester sheets and opt for lighter cotton or linen bedding as they're more breathable materials, offering you more ventilation as you sleep.

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Sharing the bed with a partner simply may not be worth it on warm nights; you don't need that extra body heat and you'll be getting hot and sweaty in all the wrong ways. Sleeping apart may be the best option for the both of you, so try to make use of your spare room or the sofa.

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Electric plugs generate a surprising amount of heat, so turn off as many as feasibly possible - you'll be shocked at how much cooler your room will be.

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It's a well-known fact that heat rises, so sleeping as low down as possible is the best place for you in the heat. This could mean sleeping on the floor or sleeping in a lower down room in the house.

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If you're not getting enough sleep in the hot weather, you'll likely be racking up what's known as sleep debt. This is the accumulative amount of sleep which you've missed out on and it can cause some serious health problems in the long-term. Try having an afternoon siesta whenever you can to catch up on your sleep.

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Fill up a spray bottle with cold water and lavender and spray onto your bedding as much as desired. Not only does the scent of lavender promote sleep, but the water solution will act as a cooling agent.

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Digesting food raises your body temperature, so don't eat a large meal in the hours before you go to bed. Instead, try having a bigger lunch and having a lighter snack in the evening.

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We all know that having a fan in your bedroom helps to cool you when you're trying to sleep, but why not up the ante? Put a bucket of iced water below the fan so that it blows even cooler air around the room.

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If you have a safe area outside where you can camp, make use of it by setting up a bedroom outside, using a tent or a simple hammock. Not only is camping a novelty, but you'll be endlessly cooler outside than inside - just be sure to protect yourself against insect bites.

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Be sure to engage in any exercise earlier than usual as it takes your body a long while to cool down after strenuous activity. This could leave you feeling hot and sticky in bed so keep the running, walking, and sports to the daylight hours.

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Keeping your curtains drawn during the day ensures that as little warmth as possible gets into your home.

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When your body is preparing to sleep, your temperature drops slightly. When it's hot outside, signal to your body that it's time to go to sleep by cooling off with a cold shower. Even if you can't handle a cold shower, a lukewarm one will still help you to drift off quicker.

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People generally drink more alcohol in the warm weather because of the increase in social events like barbecues. Although alcohol allows you to fall asleep quickly, it actually disturbs the quality of sleep that you get which is just as important, so try to avoid it in the hours before bedtime.

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