Is Sleeping in a Cold Room Helpful or Harmful?
We all know that guy who sleeps with the fan blasting all year long.
While we love curling up on our Nest mattress and falling asleep to white noise, we find that this habit leaves us with a cold feeling - and a cold room. Should you turn off the fan and learn to fall asleep to the sound of snoring, or pull up the down comforter and bask in the chill?
We recognize that this subject is fraught! Entire relationships have dissolved over disagreements about proper bedroom temperature. To help you out, we looked to science to provide you with an answer that will stop your conflict in its tracks.
According to the most recent research, it's the fan of the fan that is going to win this one! Doctors and scientists have found that cold air is beneficial for several reasons. If you're looking for a way to fall asleep quickly, turning down the thermostat is your best bet!
But why? We've looked into it and put together the most compelling reasons why a touch of chill in the air is the healthiest way to catch some Zs. Keep reading to discover exactly how cold air improves sleep quality!
Get To Dreamland Quicker
Believe it or not, tossing and turning is not a mandatory tax that you must pay in order to drift off to sleep. Under the right conditions, some people fall asleep as soon as their head hits the pillow! If this sounds like something that you could only dream about, then sleeping in a colder room might help you to get to dreamland faster!
Humans are mammals, and much like hibernating bears, cooler temperatures help us to slow down and get some shut-eye. Our body temperature naturally drops in the evening to encourage rest. When you settle down in a colder room, you are supporting your body's natural inclination to chill out, slow down, and drift off.
In a warmer room, those signals can get confused, encouraging wakefulness when you're ready for slumber. You'll probably fall asleep eventually, but it will take more time and you'll feel less rested in the morning.
Wake Up Feeling Rested
Now you know that your body naturally cools down around bedtime, but did you know that the opposite is also true? Your body temperature will increase when it's time to rise and shine and greet the day! If you get too warm at night, you are more likely to wake up prematurely and interrupt your sleep cycle.
Do you often wake up feeling sweaty and overheated? Do you get distracted by a dry throat and need to get up for a glass of water? You might be sending your brain mixed signals.
You will wake up feeling more refreshed if you can sleep through the night. Sleeping in a colder room can help reinforce your body's natural temperature fluctuations. That way, you'll wake up with the sun and can avoid that awful, moist 2 AM water run!
Age in Reverse
Have you heard about melatonin? It's the chemical that gets the blame for your post-turkey nap after you chow down on Thanksgiving dinner. It's commonly prescribed as a sleep supplement.
As it turns out, you can make your own!
Melatonin production increases in rooms that are between sixty and sixty-eight degrees Fahrenheit. In addition to helping your body achieve that thermoregulation we've been talking about, melatonin slows the aging process. Scientists claim it is a natural anti-depressant, a natural antioxidant, and interacts with the hormones responsible for aging.
If you're looking for short-term effects, better sleep can also reduce the look of undereye bags. You might wake up looking younger if you fall asleep in a colder bedroom!
Slims You Down
Winter is when many of us begin to set resolutions and make goals for the New Year. That often includes the resolve to lose weight - or, at a minimum, keep it off. For some of us, this might mean waking up at the crack of dawn to go for a run in the snow, but for others, a good night's sleep works wonders!
The extra melatonin produced in a cold room can encourage your body to store a different kind of fat. We call these fat cells "beige fat cells," and despite how they sound, they're good for you. They burn calories, even in your sleep!
If you set a weight loss resolution this winter, you might want to set a second resolution: to invest in warm, high-quality bedding and stay away from the thermostat!
Makes You Happy
If you've ever encountered a toddler at naptime then you know that sleep has a major effect on your mood! Next time your toddler turns into a horror movie monster consider putting them down for a nap in a chilly room.
This tip works for adults, too! The melatonin that you produce when sleeping in colder temperatures doesn't appear out of thin air. It starts as serotonin, the mood-enhancing hormone responsible for happiness!
The combination of serotonin and melatonin will ensure that you sleep better and wake up feeling rested. Who knew that the secret to happiness was a slightly chilly bedroom and a comfortable mattress all along?
Build Your Nest in a Cold Room
We're not saying that you should assemble your Nest mattress in an icebox, but the benefits of sleeping in a cold room are clear. If you want to sleep better, age slower, and fall asleep fast, turn down the thermostat and snuggle up with a warm blanket. You will wake up refreshed and ready to tackle whatever is ahead of you!
Even in the coldest room, great sleep starts with a great mattress. If you're not sure where to start, take our mattress quiz to find the perfect mattress for your needs. The sleep doctor is at your service!