How to get to sleep in the heat

(Picture: Ella Byworth for

Have you been outside today? It’s pretty hot. Plus, if the weather forecast is to be believed, it’s going to get even hotter over the next few days.

That’s wonderful for things like barbecues or wearing your favourite sandals, but not so good for actually getting to sleep at night.

We’ve all been there: Tossing and turning the pillow to find some mythical cold spot that doesn’t exist; wishing you were single just in the nighttime so your partner – who seems to radiate the heat of a thousand suns – wouldn’t be near you.

The fact is, Britain isn’t built for the heat at all. The Central Line will always be a squalid, sweaty, site of devastation in summer, and you will never have air conditioning, because it wouldn’t make sense for the rest of the year.

There are a few techniques you can use to cool down at night time, though.

Dr. Nerina Ramlakhan, Silentnight’s sleep expert, says: ‘A good night’s sleep is important in order to process information throughout the day, as well as to repair and rebalance the body physically and mentally.

‘Ideally, in order for us to sleep well, there needs to be a fractional temperature difference between our body and our brain – a warm body and a cool head. The optimum temperature for good sleep is around 19 degrees, but it is important to remember that this is about how you feel and what you need for you.’

Here’s what to do so you don’t burn up during the heatwave:

Keep your room cool

Easier said than done, but as Dr. Ramlakhan says, you need to try to get your room to as close as that 19C as possible.

A fan is an obvious option, and Amazon Prime will deliver you a high-powered one for under £50 in less than 24 hours depending on where you live.

If that still doesn’t do the trick, try placing a tray of ice in front of a blowing fan. As the ice melts, this will help to cool the room down

(Picture: Ella Byworth for

Chill your sheets

It might sound crazy, but chilling your pillowcase in the freezer before going to bed could be a good option.

Have a think about which kind of sheets you have on, too. A lower tog duvet will always be cooler, but there are a number of duvet covers and sheets specifically designed for warm sleepers.

Nanu have recently released a Hot and Not duvet, so if your partner’s body heat is the thing making your nights miserable, you can keep your side cool while theirs is all snuggly.

Sleep naked

There are a million good reasons for sleeping naked, but one of the most obvious ones in this type of weather is that the cooling properties of your body aren’t inhibited.

Even a seemingly small negligee or shorts and top could be made of a fabric that keeps all the heat in, leaving you sweaty and very much awake.

Wash your feet and wrists

Dr. Ramlakhan says that one of the easiest ways to cool your body down is to wash your feet with cold water before getting into bed, and rinse wrists under cold water’.

Once your extremities have chilled out, it’s easier for the rest of you to follow suit. Plus it doesn’t involve a full cold shower, which is always a bonus.

(Picture: Ella Byworth for

Opt for menthol

You remember the tingle you’d get when you put vapor rub on your chest when you were sick? Recreate this for different purposes, and put some on your forehead in the night.

Although it doesn’t actually lower your body temperature, it has this cooling effect as it blocks the calcium current along the nerves responsible for detecting temperature. Neat, huh?

Go it alone

While this article might sound like it’s bashing co-sleeping with your significant other, it’s actually all about sleep.

If you genuinely feel you’d be better off in another room or alone to get some shut-eye, it’s a good temporary option. You’ll also feel less jealous that they’re sound asleep while you’re thinking about the earth’s core and whether it’s the same temperature as your bedroom.

Stay hydrated

In general in the heat, it’s important to remember to drink lots of water throughout the day. However, ensure you take sips of cold water when you wake up at night, too. This will replenish any sweat you’ve lost.

In the same vein, you should try to lay off the booze and caffeine, as both of these things can really dehydrate you and stop you from sleeping properly.

We know it’s hard when everybody’s at a beer garden or inhaling iced lattes, but it’ll pay off during the night.

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