5 Tips to Sleep Better in the Colder Months
Beat The Winter Blues By Getting A Better Night's Sleep
It's that time of year where the "winter blues" often set in (it's a cool 22 degrees here in Chicago today). The frigid temperatures and lack of sunlight can make it very difficult to find the motivation to get out of bed. If this sounds like something you've dealt with, you're not alone. According to the Mayo Clinic, there are more than three million cases of Seasonal Affective Disorder in the United States every year. While you can't change the weather on your own (unfortunately), there are some simple things you can do to get a better night's sleep during these blustery winter months.
5 Tips To Help You Sleep Better In Winter
Giver Yourself A Healthy Sleep Zone
As we've shared in previous blog posts, ensuring that your bedroom is an environment that promotes quality rest is essential. Using high-quality mattress protector and pillow protector is a good first step to limiting dust, dust mites and other allergens that can keep you up at night. Air filters - whether as a part of your in-home HVAC system or standalone units - can also help in this area.
Use High Quality Bedding
The fabric and quality of your bed sheets can make a big difference in how soundly you snooze. While flannel sheets provide excellent warmth, they can often make you too warm, which can adversely affect your sleep quality. As multiple studies have shown, people sleep better in cooler temperatures. So while setting the thermostat down a few degrees can help, the use of the right sheets is equally important.
A Little Light Exercise Before Bed
While it's likely a lot tougher to go on a long run during these cold months, finding some time to do a light workout could help you sleep better at night. In fact, a sleep expert featured on CNN suggests that yoga, stretching or other exercise before bed can help your circadian rhythm wind you down. The National Sleep Foundation's 2013 "Sleep in America" poll, which studied the sleep habits of 1,000 participants, found that 83% of people who exercised at any time (including at night) reported sleeping better than those who didn't exercise at all.
Get Outside Time
It's no surprise that more people opt to stay inside during the cold and windy winter months rather than spend it outdoors. However, limited access to sunlight can cause your vitamin D levels to drop, which can increase your sleepiness during the day. In addition, the lack of light can cause your body to produce more of the chemical melatonin, which can make you feel tired and sluggish. So when it's possible, get a quick walk in during your lunch break - or during times where the daylight in shining. And remember to bundle up!
Get a comfortable set of PJs
Everyone has a different preference when it comes to sleep attire. Some enjoy bundling up in cozy, warm pajamas while others opt to hit the hay in just their "birthday suit". In the winter, though, you probably could use a set of warm, yet light, nightshirts and gowns. Ideally, your sleep zone is cool and comfortable. But if you're not wearing enough warm clothing, you'll find yourself tossing and turning all night as your body tries to find the proper warmth.
By following these tips, we hope you'll sleep warmly and comfortably until spring arrives. Good luck!