How to Sleep Well in the Summer
Getting enough good quality sleep has become a worldwide issue with the advent of our 24/7 lifestyle and access to technology anytime, any place… including the bedroom.
Sleeping in hotter, brighter, and humid summer night-time conditions present additional problems to overcome - this includes pollen if you suffer from hay fever and pollution if you live inner city.
Luckily, our sleep expert, Dave Gibson, has some great advice and top tips to help you overcome the nuisances of summer sleep….
Darkness is a key cue for sleep - the dimming evening sun tells the brain that it is night-time and our sleep hormone (Melatonin) is released. With the advent of the light bulb and now blue light being emitted from technology our brain gets confused with the wrong external signals, making us think it's still daylight in the evenings. The brighter summer nights and mornings compound this problem.
Top Tips - Turn off the bedroom light and check for gaps around curtains and blinds for light leakage at night and at dawn. Use Black out blinds and heavy drapes to help to keep the light out. Equally, check for light coming through under your bedroom door; if it seeps through try placing a towel along the base of the door to block it. Stop using technology at least one hour before bed, if possible.
Experts from charity Allergy UK are warning that the rise in numbers of ‘new’ older sufferers is so explosive that by 2030 more than 30 million Britons could suffer from allergy symptoms. One of the biggest problems in the summer for those who suffer from hay fever is that it interferes with going to sleep and being able to open the window to let the cooler air in.
Top Tips - Dry your sheets inside the house, not outside. Shower before bed to remove pollen, and put petroleum jelly under your nose to stop the pollen from getting in. You can also consider investing in a Dyson Pure Hot + Cool Link™ purifier - as it’s a combined fan and purifier (as well as heater) you can keep your windows closed, avoiding street noise, and still keep cool whilst also removing nightly pollution.
Without traditional fan blades to circulate the air, the Hot + Cool Link™ purifier is a lot quieter so it is perfect for the bedroom. It has a night-time mode for an even quieter setting and a display which can be dimmed at the same time.
In fact, the Dyson Hot + Cool Link™ purifier solves a number of issues that affect our sleep in the summer and that’s why I really can recommend this product.
The natural decrease in outside temperature as the sun goes down is another cue for sleep. If your bedroom is too hot during mid-summer nights this makes it harder for your core body temperature to drop, and you struggle to get to sleep.
As a general rule, the best bedroom temperature for you to fall asleep easily is quite cool - between 60 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit (15.5 to 20 degrees centigrade). If your bedroom is out of this range, it will make it harder to get to sleep. Once asleep, your core body temperature then drops further during sleep, and reaches its lowest level during REM sleep, typically around 3 to 4 hours after you fall asleep. If your room is too hot it disrupts your ability to get down to this REM state easily.
Typically, most of us will open the windows at night to try to get more air into the room, which is not a great solution if you live in busy inner cities both in terms of sound and pollution.
Top Tips - Keep your room cool by keeping blinds and curtains closed. Put your top sheet (in a plastic bag) in the fridge before you get into bed if you are finding the heat unbearable. You can also apply ice blocks or a cold bottle of water to your armpits, back of your neck, behind your knees, and wrists until you have cooled.
Dyson’s Hot + Cool Link™ purifier is perfect for the hot summer nights as it keeps you cool and will even switch itself off once your room is at your preferred temperature. It has a built-in thermostat and a timer system that can cleverly set to switch off when you go to sleep and start before you want to wake up. The timing system enables you to program up to 9 hours, plenty for a good night’s sleep.
You can also remotely control, set, and monitor air quality and temperature via the Dyson Link App. Perfect for when the hot sun decides to come out after you have left for work.
An Extra thought for Allergy Sufferers… Air Quality
Allergy symptoms can get much worse in the bedroom due to dust mites. Research from the WHO suggests that pollution in our homes can be up to five times worse than outside. In fact, it has been proven that we all sleep better in better air quality - a study released in May 2017 shows that people exposed to high levels of traffic-related pollutant gas and fine-particle pollution had 60 percent increased likelihood of having low sleep efficiency compared to those with the lowest exposure(1).
Dyson’s purifier uses a Glass HEPA filter, and removes 99.95% of ultrafine and potentially harmful particles as small as 0.1 microns from the air we breathe. Capturing pollen, pollution, mould, bacteria, and even odours, the purifier then circulates and projects purified air around the whole bedroom using Dyson’s Air Multiplier technology. The Jet-Focus control allows you to toggle between powerful focused airflow, or a wider airflow setting for personal or whole-room projection.
Purification of the air in the bedroom will help to remove the microscopic particles of dead skin but changing linen, using mattress protectors, and regularly dusting and vacuuming will also all help, as well as removing rugs from the bedroom to reduce the places for dust mites to accumulate.
If you continue to suffer allergic reactions in bed such as a stuffy nose at night or itchy skin in the morning, Dyson has produced a specific vacuum called the Dyson V6 Mattress, powerful enough to remove both the human skin cells that dust mites feed on, as well as their allergy-inducing faeces.
Want to win?
You can win a Dyson Pure Hot + Cool Link™ worth £499.99 in our fabulous competition. Check it out here!
1. American Thoracic Society. Lead author Martha E. Billings, MD, MSc, assistant professor of medicine at the University of Washington. Read study here.