Surviving summer nights

Warmer weather and longer days can mean less restful sleep

Here are some tips from The Sleep Council on how you can help yourself get a good night's sleep


The ideal temperature for your bedroom should be between 16-18c - in order to sleep well the body temperature needs to drop by about 1/2 a degree, this normally happens between 2-3 am and is called the temperature nadir (the lowest point of your core temperature reached during the night)To lose this body heat there must be a difference in the temperature of the room and our bodies, a cooler room will absorb the heat we need to lose, whilst a warm room may not, which will lead to unsettled sleep


Don't sleep with the windows open- it may actually be cooler inside than out particularly if there is no breeze, It may also let in biting nosy insects, something else to keep you awake


Keep your bedroom curtains closed during the day this will stop the sun heating your room


Invest in a summer lighter tog duvet, and wear bed clothes made from natural fibres.


Fans are great in the bedroom, but locate it close to your head, as the face and head are wear we lose most of our body heat when in bed, as the heart priorities the blood supply to the brain.


Don't eat a heavy meal before bed, as your body processes food, your temperature rises as your body burns calories, High fat food and alcohol are harder to digest so try to avoid these for at least 3 hours before sleeping


Regular exercise is fantastic. However  allow time for your body to cool properly before going to bed, exercise will raise your body temperature for at least 4 hours by 2 degrees


Keep hydrated during the day with plenty of non alcoholic drinks, which will help regulate your body temperature.


Don't be tempted by a cold shower before bed this will in actual fact have the reverse effect, A cold shower only cools down the surface of the body not the core, so your body reacts by retaining heat so you will actually warm up - conversely a hot shower works in reserve, your body will work to shift the heat cooling you down ready for sleep.


Don't stick your feet out of the covers!

Cold hands and feet are associated with sleeplessness; your feet can be cold when the rest of you is warm, as blood has further to go to get to them so you will lose very little heat from your feet.

Claire Edwards