For Every Season, There’s A Reason…You Can’t Sleep
There’s nothing quite like a perfect night’s sleep. No tossing, no turning and no waking up in the middle of the night. You awaken in the same position you fell asleep in and you can feel the vitality surging through your veins when you rise.
Then there are nights when sleep seems as elusive as peace on earth. You try to figure out if you ate or drank something unusual. You begin thinking maybe the problem is that you fell asleep watching a scary movie or you simply have a tormented soul. In reality, the answer to erratic sleep patterns may lie in seasonal weather changes. Fluctuations in temperature, humidity and precipitation affect atmospheric pressure, sunshine and sleep. Some factors you can diminish, while others will defy your most valiant efforts.
Let The Sunshine In
Whether you worship the sun or avoid those rays at any cost, its influence on sleep patterns and moods is enormous. When the days get shorter in fall and winter, the effects of sunshine – or the lack thereof – are most noticeable.
You get most of your vitamin D from sunlight. Shorter days mean less sun, so the serotonin produced by vitamin D is in short supply. Reduced levels of serotonin not only affect when you sleep and wake up, they can also induce depression and fatigue and make your body crave carbs. Drowsiness is another side effect, along with erratic patterns of fatigue prompted by haphazard releases of melatonin caused by changes in sunrise and sunset times.
Letting a little sunshine into your day can fend off these symptoms. A Purdue University study found that fair-skinned folks can benefit from just six minutes a day of sunlight, medium skin needs six minutes and dark skin requires 38 minutes. With just 25 percent of skin exposed, you’ll absorb 2,000 IU of vitamin D. If you can’t go outside, being near windows also helps.
Stay Cool, Sleep Better
Do you ever wonder why you grab that cozy throw as the night lingers on? When your body starts to shut down and sleep is imminent, your body temperature drops a little and maintains that temperature until just a few hours before you wake up. That temperature drop also happens around lunchtime, which is why you feel a nap coming on around that time.
For the best night’s sleep, you need to lower the temperature of the air around you. Ambient air between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit is best for resting. If you’re too hot or too cold, try adjusting bedclothes and bedding rather than changing the thermostat and affecting all the rooms in your home. Our Bedtime Classic Sheet is sure to keep you cool throughout the night.
The Long Hot Summer
Slight adjustments easily increase comfort levels during fall, winter and spring, but it’s much more difficult to counteract hot summer nights, especially when humidity is high. No amount of tossing and turning alleviates that hot, sticky feeling.
Blasting the air conditioning can help, but to prevent becoming too chilly or drying out your sinuses, try a ceiling fan or cracking a few windows to lower the temperature in your bedroom. Also avoid late night snacks as digesting food raises your body temperature. Surround yourself with natural fibers to enhance air circulation and stay cooler.
Here Comes The Rain
Rain can generate the best night of sleep you’ve ever had or be so disruptive that you don’t sleep at all. The sound of steady, moderate rainfall can be as soothing and hypnotic as the white noise of waves lapping on a seashore. On the other hand, stormy weather and high winds alarm many people and disrupt their sleep. Add thunder and lightning to the scenario and many won’t close their eyes all night.
Investing in insulated windows cuts down the noise and blinds that completely block light keep the lightning flashes from illuminating your bedroom. White noise machines can also mask the volume of the thunder, and blackout eye masks prevent the lightning from keeping you awake. Relaxation techniques such as guided imagery meditation and deep-breathing exercises may also help you doze off and sleep soundly.
No one can control the weather. That's why you need to find a way to deal with it through all the seasons so that you won’t lose any sleep. We're all unique so not everything that works for you will work for everyone else. However, if you're having issues falling asleep, chances are one or more of these tips should do the trick and have you comfortably drifting off to dreamland.