Temperatures have spiralled to above 30C this week as the UK bakes in a nationwide heatwave. With hot, humid days come sticky arid nights, and Brits have been struggling to sleep with the heat – as UK homes aren’t equipped for the tropical highs. Now extreme heat warnings have been issued by the Met Office adding further to the misery of those unable to get a good night’s sleep.
Unfortunately for those wishing for cooler nights, the hot weather is due to continue, with the Met Office issuing an extreme heatwave warning for parts of the UK until Thursday.
The forecasters warn: “The current hot weather is expected to continue until later this week.
“High temperatures are expected both by day and by night, peaking Thursday before temperatures fall on Friday”.
Brits have taken to Twitter to complain about the stifling heat impacting their sleep schedules.
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One wrote: “Can’t sleep it is too hot”.
Another said: “Too hot in the UK. Can’t get any sleep! Window cranked out to the max.”
While a third added: “It’s all well and good it being nice and warm in the day but when it’s this muggy at nearly midnight and I can’t get to sleep, it’s proper annoying.”
So if your bedroom is too hot and you’re struggling to sleep, don’t fret! There are ways to help you drift off easily.
Jessica Mason, linen expert and founder of Piglet has given Express.co.uk her eight top tips for getting a good night’s sleep in the summer.
2. Try linen bed sheets
Jessica advises we sleep best when we are kept comfortably cool and dry, two of linen’s intrinsic technical feats.
During the REM sleep stage, we are not very good at keeping our body temperature constant, so what we sleep in is very important.
According to a performance study by the University of Lorraine, France, linen achieved the highest score for airflow through the fabric in comparison to other regularly used bedding materials.
Linen sheets are also non-allergenic, meaning they can help with Hayfever symptoms which may still be apparent in the nighttime!
3. Stick to your routine
Avoid napping if you can. The hot weather can make us feel more tired during the day because we are using up more energy to regulate our body temperature but napping can make it even harder to fall asleep at night.
Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time each day (when possible) for the best sleep quality.
4. Wear good-quality pyjamas
We do not sleep well if our skin feels wet from sweat. Linen absorbs and sheds moisture rapidly and is the best material to help keep your skin dry at night.
The pleasure of soft and smooth linen helps the feeling of wellbeing, a pre-condition for sleep.
Linen pyjamas are great because linen is the most breathable material on the market, and it is also great for moisture management and wicking, allowing perspiration to pass through the fabric and keep you feeling comfortable and dry all night long.
5. Block out the sunlight
With shorter nights and brighter mornings in the summer, it’s not just the heat that could be disturbing your sleep.
Consider investing in black-out blinds or curtains. Alternatively, you may want to use a classic eye mask to keep the summer sun out of your eyes in the early morning.
6. Read a book
Reading before bed is a great way to take your mind off of daily stresses and relax.
The physical act of reading is also a good way to tire your eyes.
By using your imagination before bed, and taking some time out from the wider world, you will naturally feel a lot calmer which should help to improve sleep quality throughout the night.
It is important to drink lots of water throughout the day to prepare your body for a good nights sleep.
In saying this, you should avoid drinking very large amounts of water just before bed so that you don’t need to get up multiple times in the night to use the toilet.
Think about what you drink too. Avoid drinking caffeinated drinks like coffee or cola too close to your bedtime.
Be careful about soft drinks. Alcohol should also be avoided (though many people find it more tempting to enjoy a beer or glass of wine on summer nights) as it is linked to poor sleep quality.
8. Cut back on screen-time
We’re often told that scrolling on your phone before bed isn’t the best idea, but do you know why?
First off, your phone screen gives off blue light which signals to your brain that it is still daytime.
Aside from this, checking your phone before bed can induce anxiety and keep you psychologically alert.
Try to switch off your phone an hour before bed to give your brain some much-needed time to unwind.