How to get enough sleep in this heat

“Sleep is the best meditation.” Dalai Lama

I often talk to my clients about the importance of getting enough sleep - it can help to re-balance hormones, boost metabolism, reduce cravings for fatty/sugary food, slow cellular-ageing...it basically has a whole host of health benefits. However it can be difficult to get a good night's sleep in the heat. Here are a few things that you can try to help improve your sleep despite the heat:

1. Take a warm shower before you go to bed

This may be the last thing that you want to do when you feel hot - but when we take a warm shower, blood rushes to the surface of our skin causing our body to release heat. This can actually help our core body temperature to drop when we then go to sleep.

2. Avoid those evening drinks

When it gets warmer, everyone is outside enjoying the weather and some drinks. Yet alcohol can really disrupt your sleep and cause you to wake up several times during the night. Alcohol initially acts like a sedative, causing you to fall asleep quickly - but the sleep you then have will not be of a very good quality. So if you go want to enjoy some drinks in the hot weather - you are better off doing that at lunch-time and then drinking lots of water...to ensure you don't have much alcohol left in your system by the evening.

3. Make sure you keep it cool

This one is a bit more common sense - but make sure you are not going to sleep dressed like an Eskimo, that you have a fan/air-cooler in your room, and that you have switched your duvet for some light sheets. Your core body temperature needs to drop whilst you sleep for optimum sleep - so the more you can do to help it to achieve this, the better.

4. Skip the iced-coffee

That afternoon iced-coffee can be just the pick-me-up you go to when you feel that afternoon slump at work. However, caffeine has a half-life of between 5-7 hours - which means that even a