How to Get a Good Night’s Sleep if you Feel the Cold This Winter

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Nov 15, 2022
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With temperatures dropping and winter fast approaching, it’s likely that you’re already starting to feel the cold. Maybe you’re swapping your summer duvet for your winter one, wearing an extra layer day and night, and welcoming winter comfort foods such as stews and toad in the hole - the change in the weather means changes to our lifestyle as we adapt for the months ahead.

The Problem…

Some of us just feel the cold more than others, that’s just how we are. However, there is a reason why you tend to feel cooler in the evenings and at night. Light regulates our circadian rhythm, which helps us feel sleepy at the right times, and awake and energised when we need to be. As the light begins to fade, a shift in our body temperature begins, which prepares us for sleep. As the night goes on, the body temperature continues to drop, before it starts to rise again a few hours before we naturally wake up.

For many of us, this is a helpful process that allows us to sleep well through the night, but for others, it can cause us to wake up feeling cold, and then we find we are unable to get back to sleep as the cold leaves us feeling uncomfortable. We all have different levels of comfort - some of us like to be on the warmer side, whereas others prefer to be cooler. In some cases, feeling the cold could be down to medical reasons, such as having low levels of thyroid hormones. Even having slightly lower levels can make you feel the cold more, due to a lower core body temperature.

This year, more than ever before we are looking for alternative ways to stay warm. With the increasing energy prices, many of us are looking into ways to reduce our energy consumption while getting a good night’s sleep.

Top Tips to Stay Warm at Night…

While the obvious things like investing in a high tog winter duvet and using extra blankets can help, sometimes this can have the opposite desired effect and cause us to wake in a cold sweat in the middle of the night. Getting the balance right to ensure you’re not too hot or too cold at night can be tricky. Here are a few ideas that may help…

  1. Take a hot bath or shower before bed - making sure you don’t start feeling cold in advance of going to bed is key. By having a hot shower or bath an hour or two before you go to bed, you will raise your body temperature and stop the cold setting in before you’ve even gotten into bed.
  2. Keep your feet warm - many of us can’t sleep if we have cold feet. The first place we feel the cold is in our extremities. Try a warm foot bath before bed, and wear extra thick bed socks made from wool or similar.
  3. Try a weighted blanket - not only will using a weighted blanket help keep you that little bit warmer, without causing you to overheat like lots of layers might, they     also follow a therapeutic technique known as deep pressure stimulation. This is known to promote a feeling of calm and can help improve sleep quality.
  4. Use a hot water bottle - Instead of using an electric blanket or leaving the heating on overnight, try a hot water bottle in your bed instead, which is a great cost-friendly alternative. While a hot water bottle won’t stay warm all night, it will set you up well for the night ahead, raising your body temperature as you drift off to sleep.

Have a warm drink - another great way to head to bed feeling warm and comfortable is to have a warm drink around an hour before you go to sleep. Chamomile is a great choice, as it’s known to aid sleep. Avoid anything with caffeine in, which will have the opposite effect.

Don’t let the lower temperatures have an impact on your sleep quality this winter. The above tips are simple and cost-effective adjustments that will help you sleep through the night, without waking up cold and uncomfortable.

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TheaWellbeing and its materials are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent any disease. All material on is provided for educational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or a qualified healthcare provider for any questions you have regarding a medical condition, and before undertaking any diet, exercise, or other health-related programs.