7 Ways to Cope When It’s Too Hot to Sleep
Mosquitoes. Sunburn. Reruns on TV. The insults of summer never seem to end—even as we make our way into early September. But you don’t have to let this sweltering season get the better of your shut-eye. Try these tricks and tips to reclaim your z's.
1. DE-MUGGIFY YOUR SPACE.
The only thing worse than heat is damp heat. Humidity makes it harder for your body to cool itself down, thereby magnifying heat’s miserable effects. Air conditioning can remove a good amount of moisture from the air, but a small dehumidifier can also make a big difference.
2. BARE YOUR FEET.
It’s normal to feel like you need a blanket in order to sleep, but your tootsies don’t need to be covered up. Your hands and feet are filled with veins. Cooling your feet cools the blood within them. When that blood circulates, it can help reduce your total body temperature.
3. JUST CHILL (YOUR SHEETS).
Leave folded linens in the fridge for a few hours in the evening. Just before it’s time to go to sleep, pop them on the bed, then fling yourself down and luxuriate in the goosebumps. The cold won’t last, but by the time it fades, you should already be conked out.
4. GO UNDERGROUND.
We all know the science: hot air rises. Cool air sinks. By nightfall, the upper floors of your house are stuffed with a day’s worth of heat. If you’ve got access to a basement, you’ve got your own walk-in sleep freezer.
5. PUT ICE PACKS ON YOUR PULSE POINTS.
You don’t need to submerge your entire body in an ice bath. Applying cold packs to the inside of your wrists, elbows, and knees, as well as the back of your neck and your forehead, will go a long way toward shedding some of that nasty heat.
6. FIX YOUR AIR FLOW.
Most ceiling fans have two settings: counter-clockwise for summer, to push cool air downward, and clockwise for winter, to draw the cool air up. Just flip the switch on the fan body to get things moving in the right direction.
7. CLOSE YOUR CURTAINS.
The heat’s already got you grumpy as a troll. Why not create your own cave? Keeping curtains and blinds shut during the day prevents all that terrible sunlight from entering and accumulating in your lair. You don’t need to see outside anyway; after all, the ice cream truck has a jingle for that very reason.