This article is for general information purposes only and is not intended as medical or other professional advice.
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The best room temperature for sleep is between 15 and 19 degrees Celsius for adults. If you find yourself struggling to sleep at night – either with beads of sweat or the shivers running through your body – you may be sleeping in the wrong temperature range.
Body temperature and room environment play an instrumental role in the quality of our sleep. Our sleep cycles are strongly linked to our internal heat distribution system, more commonly known as thermoregulation. If we sleep in an environment that is either too hot or too cold, it interferes with our bodies’ process of circulating heat and creates uncomfortable conditions for sleep.
Below is an overview of the recommended temperature range to sleep in for each age group.
The ideal temperature range varies slightly with age. The optimal range for seniors and children is a little warmer at 19 to 21 degrees and 18 to 21 degrees, respectively. A lot of this will depend on personal preferences, as some people naturally sleep hot while others prefer it cold.
It’s perfectly normal to set your room temperatures above or below these recommended temperatures until you feel comfortable. However, the best temperature for sleep is usually cooler.
Sleeping in a cool temperature helps improve sleep quality. Throughout the day, our bodies fluctuate between 2 and 3 degrees. When we lie down in bed, our internal temperatures drop, signaling to our brains that it’s bedtime. Maintaining a cool bedroom temperature helps facilitate our body’s natural cooling process.
According to a study in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, participants who slept within a scorching range of 35.5 and 37.8 degrees Celsius had a shorter sleep duration and shallower sleep. Conversely, studies found that a drop in body temperature before bedtime is more likely to trigger sleep onset, the transition between wakefulness and sleep, and increase deep sleep.
In addition, cooler temperatures can facilitate REM (rapid eye movement), the stage of sleep where our muscles relax and we begin to dream. When we change our environment to a comfortable range, we can ensure more restful sleep.
When the warmer months roll around, our bodies can break into a sweat and we often cannot sleep since our bodies struggle to lower our temperatures. While it’s tempting to turn up the AC, here are some tips to lower your bedroom temperature and cool your body.
Set your thermostat to 22 degrees Celsius during the day or when you are home. When you are about to head to bed, program the thermostat to between 19 and 17 degrees. It’s recommended to keep your room slightly warmer to counteract the drops in temperature at night.
As you’re preparing to sleep, here are a few tips to help you stay warm and comfy.
A comfortable environment is one of the most important elements to have at bedtime. Lying in your bed at the recommended temperature for sleep can help you drift off faster, enjoy better sleep quality, and improve your overall health. It’s crucial to facilitate and maintain these optimal temperature ranges in your room even during the day, no matter the season.
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