This commonly overlooked problem can cause disruption to your sleep and leave you feeling exhausted upon waking. But the impact doesn't stop there. Persistent night sweats and disturbed sleep can also take a toll on your overall health and well-being. 

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Why You Might Over-heat at Night

In the evening, when your eyes detect that it's dark, the hormone melatonin is released. As well as triggering feelings of tiredness, it also causes your body's temperature to begin dropping. When you finally nod off, your body will continue trying to decrease its temperature by around 2° in total. When it’s time to wake, the body's core temperature will begin rising back to its usual level.

If your body’s core temperature is too high, sweat is produced in an attempt to cool you down. So, what makes your core temperature rise at night? Well, there are some obvious causes and some not so obvious ones. The simplest cause is that it’s too hot in your bed.  Thick bedding or mattresses can retain heat and prevent airflow. (Think memory foam designs.) Of course, having another person or pets in the bed can increase heat too. 

However, night sweats can also be due to  internal processes. For example, the hormonal changes that come with menopause can affect the regulatory system that normally helps lower temperature when you’re sleeping.

Metabolism can also play a role

The likes of eating and exercising too close to your bedtime can amp up your body’s metabolic rate, disrupting temperature control and sleep quality. According to the American National Health Service, over-heating at night can be caused by medications, like pain relievers and antidepressants. Some conditions, such as anxiety can actually make your sweat glands more responsive which can also potentially lead to night-time sweatiness.

So there are many potential causes of night sweats.Thankfully, there are also plenty of ways to help stay cool at night. Read on for potential remedies to your sleep deficit.

Take Stock of Your Sleep Environment

  • Firstly, take a look at your bedroom. Do you usually keep the curtains wide open, letting the sun stream in? While letting sunlight in is a great way to start your day, keeping the room cool and dark at night is best.
  • Next up: your bed. Everything from your mattress to your sheets and pillows can effect your body temperature. When it comes to sheets and pillowcases, opt for breathable fabrics like bamboo which are not only thermo-regulating, but are twice as absorbent as cotton. This moisture wicking quality keeps your skin dry and also aids in stabilising body temperature.
  • For mattresses, latex is a good option for air circulation. Memory foam, on the other hand, tends to retain heat. If you have a memory foam mattress, don’t despair — you can easily buy cooling pads or sheets to go on top.
  • Finally, there’s the trusty fan. Although some people find it impossible to sleep with a fan blasting in their ears, others find the noise soothing. Even if you can’t sleep with it on, run it for an hour prior to bed to cool the room and improve air circulation.

Preparing for a Better Night's Sleep

What you do before bed can have an impact on your internal body temperature. Eating or exercising too close to bedtime can cause your temperature to rise, while taking a hot bath or shower can actually have the opposite effect. When you get out, your body temperature will begin to dip, giving you a better chance of a restful night.

Ready to jump into bed? Consider what you’re wearing. Sleeping naked may seem like a good solution, however choosing sleepwear that is lightweight, and made from natural breathable fibres can actually be more beneficial. Unfortunately, polyester is the most common material used for pyjamas,  and it's a not a good choice for hot sleepers or the environment.  Pasithea's sleepwear is made from GOTS certified bamboo and has been crafted to provide maximum moisture wicking and breathability. Check out our silky long bamboo PJ's here.

While some sleep tips may or may not work for you, there are a few products that seem to be universally liked by hot sleepers.

If you’re looking to try cooler sheets and covers, consider bamboo bedding. Bamboo is extremely effective for thermo-regulation and moisture wicking while also being generally softer, lighter and more comfortable than cotton sheets.

Although night sweats are worrying, they are your body’s clever way of cooling you down while you sleep. However if they consistently interfere with your sleep patterns, it's important to address this issue by trying  some adjustments to your sleep environment and sleep routine. Remember to be patient as everyone is different and progress may take time. And finally if your'e not achieving improvements, we recommend consulting with a sleep specialist or medical professional. 

At Pasithea, our mission is to bring about healthier sleep for all.  So is if you are concerned about your sleep patterns, try our quick survey and we'll send you a brief personalised report with some handy hints, based on current medical research. Here's to your journey in achieving the sleep you deserve.