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Is Sleeping In A Cold Room Really Good For Your Health?

Sleep is critical for one's overall health - I know it, you know it - studies have proved it. However, did you know that the place you sleep and the environment plays a role in defining your sleep quality?

According to studies, and that too a lot of them, sleeping in a cold room is better for your health than sleeping in a warm room. Though sleeping in a 'cold room' may not sound like a healthy choice, health experts point out that it helps facilitate sleepiness and help the body lose weight in the process [1].

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Benefits Of Sleeping In A Cold Room

There are a ton of benefits that come from sleeping in colder temperatures. It can help reduce the risk of metabolic illness to improve the quality of sleep [2]. Also note that sleep usually begins when our body temperature drops, so a colder room can encourage us to fall asleep faster [3].

Promotes quick sleep: Studies point out that your body begins to drop in temperature right before you fall asleep as a way to conserve your energy [4]. Sleeping in a colder room will help in dropping your body temperature in a healthy way, therefore helping you ou fall asleep quicker.

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Improves sleep quality: A cooler room can help regulate your body temperature throughout the night, thereby improving your sleep quality [5]. As your body cools down naturally, you slip into a deeper sleep, allowing you to wake up feeling refreshed and well-rested [6].

Improves metabolism: The human body has different types of fat, which are generally identified by different colours [7]. While white fat is unhealthy fat and is often associated with diseases like type 2 diabetes, brown fat help improves insulin sensitivity and regulate the temperature in your body [8].

And when you sleep in a cold room, your body will naturally develop more brown fat which will burn to keep you warm, boosting your metabolism naturally [9].

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Benefits Of Sleeping In A Cold Room

Reduces the risk of certain diseases: Studies have shown that sleeping in a room that's consistently 22°C helps you boost up your metabolism, which in turn can help avoid the risk of certain diseases such as diabetes [10]. It has also been pointed out that producing brown fat can help protect people from the rising dangers of obesity [11].

Prevents insomnia: Studies show that people who suffer from insomnia tend to have a warmer core body temperature before falling asleep. So by being a cooler room, your body will feel eased and calm, thereby signalling your brain that it is time for bed [12].

Boosts melatonin levels: Your body naturally starts to produce more melatonin as you cool down as the environment you are in effect your circadian rhythm and help you naturally produce more melatonin [13]. This also promotes the production of serotonin - known as the feel-good neurotransmitter [14].

Reduces stress: Sleeping in a cold room can help reduce your stress levels and improve your mood [15]. It is during your deepest sleep state that your brain, decluttering your mind and sleeping in a cold room can help ease this process and also the production of melatonin as well as serotonin (which is produced along with melatonin) plays an important role here.

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How Does Hot Temperature Affect Your Sleep?

The temperature in the space where you sleep and your level of comfort in the space affects how well and how long you snooze. When you go to sleep, your set point for body temperature (the temperature your brain is trying to achieve) goes down. And if the room is too hot or too cold, your body will find it difficult to match the set point [16]. So, if you are in a room that is cool, it is easier for the body to reach the set point and hence makes it easier to sleep [17].

However, if the room is too cold or too hot, it is more likely that you will wake up as the comfort level of your bedroom temperature also especially affects the quality of REM (rapid eye movement) sleep [18].

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What Is The Best Temperature For Sleeping?

A specific temperature for everyone is not really an applicable option. Experts in the field assert that what is comfortable for one person isn't for another. However, a close-to-specific recommendation would be to keep the room between 19°C to 22°C [19]. Also, it is always best to set the temperature at the sleeper's comfortable level [20].

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How Many Hours Of Sleep Do You Need?

The quality of your sleep directly affects your mental and physical health and the quality of your waking life, including your productivity, emotional balance, heart health, weight and many more [21]. According to the National Sleep Foundation (NSF), the appropriate sleep duration for specific age groups are as follows [22]:

  • Newborns (0 to 3 months): 14 to 17 hours each day
  • Infants (4 to 11 months): 12 to 15 hours
  • Toddlers (1 to 2 years): 11 to 14 hours
  • Preschoolers (3 to 5 years): 10 to 13 hours
  • School-age children (6 to 13 years): 9 to 11 hours
  • Teenagers (14 to 17 years): 8 to 10 hours
  • Adults (18 to 64 years): 7 to 9 hours
  • Older adults (over 65 years): 7 to 8 hours
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Some Tips For Good Sleep

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an individual can consider the following tips to get some good sleep [23].

  • Get enough natural light, especially earlier in the day.
  • Avoid exposure to artificial light, especially close to your bedtime.
  • Go to bed and rise at the same time every day, even at the weekend.
  • Get enough daily exercise and avoid exercising near bedtime.
  • Avoid eating and drinking, especially alcohol and high fat and sugar-rich foods in the hours before bedtime.

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How To Cool Down Your Room Without An AC

The first thought that comes to the mind of the majority to bring down the temperature in the room is switching on an AC [24]. Apart from the carbon emissions produced, excessive use of ACs can lead to dry eyes, headache, respiratory problems and dry skin etc.

So, here is a list of ways you can cool down your room without the help of an AC [25].

  • Use cotton sheets on the bed.
  • Make use of the exhaust fans to pull out the heat.
  • Keep your windows open, especially early in the morning.
  • Use energy-efficient bulbs as regular light bulbs radiate a lot of excess heat when they are producing energy.
  • Wear loose cotton clothes all day and especially at night.
  • Stay hydrated.
  • If you can, sleep in a bed that is above the ground as it will promote airflow around you.
  • Take a cold shower.
  • Put your feet in some cold water.
  • Unplug the electronics when not in use.
  • Add some plants inside your house.
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On A Final Note...

Now that summer is here and most of us wake up sweating, it is indeed important that you bring down the temperature in the room. Sleeping in a cold room does not mean that you have to freeze yourself, as overcooling can never be good for your throat in the morning and can also lead to cold and sneezing.

Also, while the sleep requirement of one individual differs from the other, health experts and studies point out that it is critical for an adult to get 6 to 9 hours of sleep every night, to avoid the onset of various health problems.

Read more about: sleep cold health benefits