We wait all winter for some sunny weather, and as soon as a heatwave comes around, we moan that it’s too hot. But, to be fair, it is too hot at the moment. We’ve all been there at night, when you’re tossing and turning in bed, struggling because your sweat has you practically glued to the sheets. It is an awful feeling. The obvious solution for cool, calm, and relaxing sleep is an air conditioner (AC). A nice blast of the cool, conditioned air can keep a bedroom at the ideal sleep temperature. But AC uses tons of energy and jacks up your monthly electric bill. Not all of us have AC in our homes. So what’s an environmentally responsible, budget-conscious sleeper to do? In this article, you’ll find a range of techniques to help make your bedroom feel more like a cave than a sauna.
1. Take A Cool Shower Before Bed
Let’s start with one of the simplest techniques, and it’s probably one of the best. Even if you don’t like cold showers, a lukewarm one to freshen up will still help. Avoid hot baths in a couple of hours before bed though, as it takes a long time for your body to cool down. This not only does it help cool your body, but removing the sweat and sticky feeling before getting into bed just feels awesome and helps me relax.
2. Choose Cotton
Save the satin, silk, or polyester sheets for cooler nights. Light-colored bed linens made of lightweight cotton (Egyptian or otherwise) are breathable and excellent for promoting ventilation and airflow. In the heat, cotton jammies will help you fall asleep faster. According to research, they’ll soothe you into the deepest, most restorative sleep stage better than bulkier fabrics like wool.
3. Close Windows And Curtains During The Day
The sun emits a lot of light and a lot of heat. During the summer, the sun’s rays are even more powerful. Keep your curtains drawn and your blinds shut during especially hot days, to prevent the sun from heating your home. This is a trick that those in hot countries have known for centuries and can reduce the temperature of your home dramatically. You need to balance this technique with the need for natural light if you’re at home. But if you’re out all day, it’s nice not to come home to a steamy greenhouse.
4. Fill Up The Tank
Water is a great cooling agent. Make sure you keep hydrated during the day and in the evening. Get a leg up on hydration by drinking a glass of water before bed. Tossing and turning and sweating at night can result in dehydration, so get some H2O in the tank beforehand. Try not to drink alcohol, tea, or coffee before bed.
5. Adjust Your Meals For Hot Weather
Instead of big, heavy meals, go for smaller, lighter dinners, which are easier to metabolise. Digesting food raises your body temperature (especially large portions of meat). So it’s better to eat big at lunch and have a lighter meal or snack in the evening. It might also be better to eat cooler food like salads in the evening and avoid having the oven blazing away for long periods.
6. Turn Off The Lights
This tip is pretty self-explanatory. Light bulbs (even environmentally-friendly CFLs) give off heat. Fortunately, in the summer it stays light until 8:00 or 9:00 at night. Take advantage of natural light as much as possible in your home. Keep rooms cool after dark by using lights minimally or not at all, if you decide to go to bed earlier.
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