So far, the British summer has actually been good to us. There has been a few hiccups where we have had a few downpours. But for the most part, the sun has been shining with no sign of leaving anytime soon.
Unfortunately with any good British summer comes the humidity that will hover around 60-80%, leaving you sweaty and uncomfortable during the night. In places like the US, houses are more equipped and ready for unbearably hot nights with the aid of air conditioners.
Here in the United Kingdom however, where hot and humid nights are less frequent, we have to be a little more creative when it comes to trying to keep cool at night.
Not all methods work for people, so there will be a little trial and error with these suggestions, but I’m sure you will be able to find a few that will work perfectly for you.
By leaving your doors and windows open (if it is safe to do so), you’ll increase the air circulation in your bedroom. Air will be able to pass through freely, giving you fresher air that will ultimately be cooler than your body temperature.
Pick up a bag of ice from your local supermarket and place it in a bowl which will sit in front of your fan. The ice-cooled air won’t keep you cool during the whole night since the ice will melt, however it should help you fall asleep initially (which is normally the hardest part of sleeping during a hot summer night).
Alternatively you could hang a towelled filled with ice between two chairs. The ice will slowly melt and chill the towel. Then place a fan blowing directly at you through the towel which will have the same effect as the bowl method. The choice is yours.
There is an old wives tale that if you wear damp clothes, you could catch a cold. This is not true, so don’t be worried about this method. Cooling your feet with damp socks will lower your overall body temperature and help you sleep.
With extreme heat, try soaking a t-shirt, wringing it out and wearing that too bed. Some may find it hard to sleep with a damp t-shirt, but it’s worth a try.
All of your bed linen should be made from 100% cotton. Lightweight cotton is breathable which will help with airflow that will help cool you.
The same goes for your pyjamas. Check the label and make sure it’s cotton. You’ll be happy you did.
A great way to help you get to sleep quicker during a humid evening is to put your sheets in your freezer for a few minutes. Fold them up, place them in a plastic bag and wait a while. Before you go to bed, pop them back on your bed and enjoy. Granted, this will not keep you cool all night, but it should let you drift off to sleep faster.
I suppose digging out your hot water bottle was probably the last idea on your list, but hear me out. Freezing your hot water bottle is a great way to keep you and your bed cool during the night. Just pop it in the freezer hours before bedtime and you’ll be ready.
No one wants clothes clinging to them during a hot night’s sleep. Choose loose clothing that will let your skin breath.
I boil this one down to personal preference. Some people claim they can feel hotter while sleeping nude whereas others believe it keeps them cooler. Not sure how it will make you feel? Give both methods a try, and see which works best for you.
You’ll have to apologise to your partner before you try this one. The more bodies you have in your bed, the hotter it will be. For really hot nights, set up an extra bed on the sofa and you’ll probably enjoy a more restful sleep. The only problem will be choosing which one of you sleeps there.
Stuffing yourself silly will make it harder for your body to digest all that food, thus increasing your body temperature. Chow down on smaller portions for dinner instead. Not only will you be happier due to a more peaceful sleep, but your waistline will appreciate it too.
The summer is not the time for a full blown roast chicken with all the trimmings. Having your oven on for hours at a time will of course increase the room temperature and this can be quite problematic in smaller houses/flats. As an alternative, choose a salad accompanied by cold meat.
Sweating is inevitable during a night of tossing and turning which can result in dehydration. By drinking just one glass of water before you hit the sack, you’ll avoid being woken by dehydration.
Having a cool shower before bed will help lower your overall body temperature, ready for you to go to sleep.
Similar to the ‘ice towel’ idea, hang a wet sheet over your bedroom curtain rail and let the breeze cool down your bedroom.
If you have the space, why not pitch a tent in your back garden? Sleeping outside is sure to be a lot cooler than inside, plus it can be a lot of fun!
Puffy duvets and soft mattresses can retain so much of your body heat which will make it hard for us to fall asleep. Replace them with a straw or bamboo mat. Although they will be less comfortable to lie on, overall you may have a more comfortable sleep.
Still finding it hard to sleep? Here are 18 ways to make your bedroom the ultimate sleep-friendly zone