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How to sleep in a heatwave

How to sleep in a heatwave: the science says to drink this hot drink before bed in hot weather

There’s nothing worse than not getting a good night’s sleep and at the moment with the UK temperatures hitting the high notes, it can be tricky to get a proper night’s rest.

We’ve pulled together a list of tips on how to ensure you enjoy some quality rest. 

Why is sleep SO important? Sleep is super important for brain health, our immune system and our mental wellbeing. You can read more on this in our blog post on why sleep is so important for brain health.Sleep is also very important for our memory.

Avoid exercise in the evening
Exercising too close to bedtime raises the body’s core temperature, which makes sleeping in hot weather even more difficult. IAlternatively, opt for exercise first thing in the morning to kick start your metabolism.

Opt for cotton nightwear and sheetsDitch polyester for cotton nightwear. Cotton’s breathability due to the natural fibres, help allow air to move freely and circulate through the fabric, which helps to keep you cooler through the night. 

Have a warm bedtime drink
Sounds contradictory to have a warm drink does cool you down- you can read more on the science behind it here.

Drink milk A bedtime milk drink contains tryptophan, an amino acid which helps you produce serotonin and melatonin, hormones that help you to sleep. If you’re dairy-free, almond milk is thought to have , serious insomnia-busting properties: it’s rich in B vitamins, zinc calcium, iron, potassium and magnesium. All of these vitamins and minerals can help regulate brain activity, relax the muscles and increase the secretion of sleep-inducing compounds like melatonin.

Don’t have a cold shower Keep your evening shower tepid to lower your body temperature. If you opt for a freezing cold one your body will react to the sudden change in temperature by preserving heat.

Boost your fan If you’ve fan, fill up a large water bottle with water, freeze it then put it in front of the fan. Chilled breeze guaranteed.

Leave your feet out
An old fashioned tip which works! Our hands and feet are key to keeping cool, so keep your feet out.

A face cloth My parents used to put a cold flannel face cloth on my forehead and as a GP I’ve used this trick on my son. Wet it, pop it into the freezer for an hour and put it on your feet or your forehead.

Sleep well,

Dr Clara Russell