At some point or another, you may have woke up during the middle of the night dripping with sweat. Maybe it was from a hot room, something you drank that night (or numerous drinks you had that night ;), an upset stomach, or even a child that sleeps with you. Whatever the reason, it’s not something that should happen too often. If it happens more often then you like, then let’s try to determine what it is that could be the reason for sleeping hot and how to correct it.
Sleep experts agree that your bedroom should be about 65-70 degrees for an ideal night’s sleep. This allows your body to relax under the covers and hopefully achieve the perfect microclimate.
What is a microclimate?
This is the climate that is directly around you while you sleep – under your sheets or however you chose to sleep. This is what ultimately determines the temperature of your skin. When your skin’s temperature gets above a certain point, your body’s natural defense against heat will kick in and it will produce sweat in order to cool your body down. Of course, this is never a welcome feeling when you wake up from a deep sleep covered in sweat.
The microclimate of your bed will vary on the type and amount of bedding you have. You might have a heavy comforter or a light sheet that you sleep with. Some sheets trap more heat than others depending on what they are made from. There are numerous factors that determine the temperature of your microclimate.
Things to consider to avoid sleeping hot:
- What is the temperature of your thermostat set at for the night? Is the temperature set to 70 or below?
- Do you sleep with a ceiling fan on?
- What do you wear to bed? Do you sleep fully clothed or in the nude? This can have a huge affect on the quality of your sleep.
- Does your partner sleep especially close to you? Or do you sleep with dogs and cats in the same bed (maybe even a child or two)?
- What kind of sheets do you sleep on? Heavy cotton sleeps warmer than thin, high thread-count sheets.
- Do you sleep with a heavy comforter or just a thin blanket?
- What kind of mattress are you sleeping on? An old latex mattress? A memory foam mattress? An innerspring mattress that was passed down from your grandfather?
Finding the ideal combination of all these factors is up to you. You’ll need to experiment with what works in your unique situation and preferences in order to achieve your ideal microclimate.
If you sleep incredibly hot and can’t find a mattress or set of sheets to help you, then you might like something that forces your bed to sleep cool. The “ChiliPAD” is a mattress pad that runs cool water through it all night long. There is also something called the “BedJet” that pumps cool air into your sheets while you sleep. The downside of devices such as these are the noise they produce while you sleep and the actual comfort they provide – the ChiliPAD is known to be an uncomfortable surface to sleep on.
Hopefully a few of these changes can help you sleep a little cooler. Sometimes just the smallest of changes in how you sleep can make a big difference.