The Perfect Temperature for Sleeping

Like most criteria for finding a restful night of sleep, the perfect temperature for sleeping at night can vary from person to person. But, if you are having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep, chances are your room is the wrong temperature. A few nights of trial and error will help you determine the perfect temperature for sleeping.

According to WebMD, your body temperature drops as you go to sleep, so that your core temperature is a little cooler at night than during the rest of the day. If you body has trouble maintaining this temperature during the night, you are likely to wake up.  So, if your room is too hot or too cold, or if the clothing you sleep in or your bedding is not quite right for your needs, it could be keeping you up at night.

Hands and feet are particularly important to pay attention to as you fall asleep. As your body temperature cools down, your hands and feet radiate heat. If these extremities are too cold, you may have trouble falling asleep. You can put on socks, or warm your bed ahead of time with a heating pad to help keep your hands and feet warm until you achieve sleep.

If you share a room, you will have to have some compromise with your partner, as their ideal sleeping temperature may be different than yours. You can adjust with clothes, sheets and blankets. But if you both agree, you can try turning the thermostat up or down. Turning the thermostat down at night is a great way to save energy and many people sleep better in a cooler room. However, if you are turning it too low, blankets may not be enough to keep you warm. Try turning it up a little for a few nights and see if it improves the quality of your sleep. You may need to keep a journal for a few nights, keeping track of the thermostat setting and rating the quality of your sleep, in order to find your ideal temperature.

Also, make sure your bedding is appropriate for the season and for your needs.  If you are waking up too hot in the night, you may need to find a comforter or blanket that is a lighter weight.  If winter and summer are extreme where you live, you may need to alternate your bedding accordingly. Check out these posts on suggested bedding mattress pads for maintaining the right temperature.

Studies show that 60 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit is the optimal sleeping temperature in a bedroom, but everyone has individual needs and you may need to adjust accordingly. What is your perfect sleeping temperature? What tricks have you used to achieve it?


Photo “thermostat” by joelk75

Leave a Reply