What Is the Optimal Sleep Temperature for Comfort and Health?
Research shows that eight to 10 hours of sleep every night is essential for your health and overall well-being. Deep sleep is vital because it facilitates tissue regeneration and healing, but the body’s internal temperature must be at a suitable level to achieve this. For that to occur, it’s crucial that the temperature of the bedroom corresponds. Here is what you need to know about setting the optimal sleep temperature.
How Temperature Affects Nighttime Sleep
The circadian rhythm regulates the sleep cycle that repeats every 24 hours. Before you go to bed, the body cools down by expanding the blood vessels to dispel heat. If your body temperature is too high or too low, it will affect your ability to fall into deep sleep.
Light, temperature and chemical reactions in the body are some of the factors that can alter your circadian rhythm. However, a 2012 study found that temperature could be the most critical factor for quality sleep.
That’s because the ambient temperature of your environment affects your body’s thermoregulation. In turn, thermoregulation can cause sleep disruption in the REM (rapid eye movement) and slow-wave phases of sleep.
The slow-wave phase regenerates tissues and facilitates healing as you are sleeping. The REM phase is responsible for improving memory and strengthening brain function. Therefore, disruptions of these sleep stages will have adverse physical and biological side effects.
The Ideal Temperature for Sleep
Research suggests the optimal temperature for quality sleep is between 65 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. The ideal range may vary owing to physiological differences and personal preferences, but most studies conclude the best setting is around 65 degrees Fahrenheit, give or take a few degrees.
When the temperature is too high, you will feel sweaty and restless. The discomfort will compel you to unconsciously shift your sleep position to dispel heat from the body. High temperatures encourage wakefulness and can affect all phases of sleep, including the slow-wave and REM stages.
Lower temperatures usually do not have as much of an impact as high temperatures. That’s because clothing and bed covers can help the body regulate heat. Nevertheless, a cold environment can disrupt the REM stage of sleep responsible for memory and brain function. Therefore, a chilly bedroom can exacerbate symptoms such as forgetfulness and fatigue.
Ideal Temperatures for Children and the Elderly
Children and the elderly are much more susceptible to fluctuations in temperature. Infants’ bodies have a large surface area to volume ratio and can lose heat up to four times faster than the bodies of adults. A drop of only a few degrees can considerably increase the energy demand on their bodies.
High temperatures are even riskier for infants than for older adults. Excessive heat in a baby’s room can cause sudden infant death syndrome. That’s why the temperature range has to be precise.
The recommended temperature range for sleeping babies is between 68 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit. You may want to consider acquiring a dedicated thermostat to ensure that an infant’s room is neither too warm nor too cold.
Older adults are particularly vulnerable to low temperatures. Therefore, you should ensure temperatures never fall below 65 degrees Fahrenheit. For energy efficiency and comfort, the best range is between 68 and 72 degrees for seniors.
Does Humidity Have an Effect on Sleep?
You may experience sleep disruptions when the humidity level is too high or too low. Moisture saturation in your home makes it harder for your body to regulate its internal temperature. Your body manages heat through evaporation, so when the room is humid, the space feels hotter than it actually is.
When the humidity level in a room is over 60%, you will feel sweaty and uncomfortable. A moist bedroom will force you to keep turning, causing wakefulness in the critical phases of sleep. As a result, you will wake up feeling tired and restless.
A high humidity level can also cause moisture problems in your home. In turn, this may trigger respiratory complications. Sneezing and coughing will keep you from falling into a deep sleep.
On the other hand, dry air can also cause enough discomfort to keep you awake at night. Your skin will be itchy, and you may experience nose and eye irritation. Your respiratory system requires some moisture, so when the humidity level is low, it can cause respiratory inflammation and other health complications.
Several studies have varying conclusions about the ideal humidity level, but the best range cited by most experts is between 30 and 50%. You may require a dehumidifier or a humidifier to regulate moisture, depending on the conditions of the indoor atmosphere in your home.
Your air conditioning system can regulate high levels of humidity through the evaporator. Its coils are cool enough to condense the vapor and drain it away from the system. If your home in Theodore has moisture problems, you can consult our experts at Hansen Air Pros. Managing humidity is essential for your comfort as well as for your equipment’s longevity.
Why You May Want to Consider Zoning Control
In large homes, maintaining ideal temperatures can be complicated. In the baby’s room, you need to avoid a high temperature, but at the same time, older adults need more warmth. One of the solutions to the problem is zoning control.
Zoning systems usually have multiple air handlers for different spaces. Modern systems connect to an outdoor unit via a conduit that carries the refrigerant. The most recent models are ductless, versatile and energy-efficient.
By zoning, you can manage temperatures in different rooms while saving energy. In unused spaces, the heating and cooling can be reduced to a minimum, but your system will continue conditioning other rooms. As a result, temperature regulation is more precise than with your central heating and cooling system. If you need more information, we have a wide selection of zoning control systems available at Hansen Air Pros.
Benefits of a Programmable Thermostat
It is critical to keep temperatures within the recommended range, especially if you have vulnerable people in your home. A programmable thermostat can help you maintain healthy temperatures and avoid conditions harmful to children and the elderly.
One of the benefits of a smart thermostat is that it can learn your patterns and adjust automatically. Every time you change the temperature, it records the configuration, which will inform future settings.
There are different thermostat models you can find today. The most recent ones can read weather data and use it to change settings. Some have Wi-Fi capabilities that enable you to make changes remotely.
When looking for a programmable thermostat, consider getting one with a humidistat feature. A humidistat can adjust settings based on the levels of humidity in your home. High levels of moisture can compromise comfort and increase the cooling load of your air conditioning system. Therefore, managing humidity can reduce your home’s energy consumption.
Before your settle on a smart thermostat, you need to ensure it is compatible with your HVAC system. There are tools to check if a device will work with your equipment. Consult with our team at Hansen Air Pros for guidance on choosing a suitable thermostat.
If you are looking for reliable HVAC solutions to enhance the quality of your sleep, turn to the expert technicians at Hansen Air Pros We’re located in Theodore, and we provide outstanding heating, cooling and indoor air quality services to people throughout the Gulf Coast of Alabama and Mississippi. That includes installation, repair and maintenance. Our team can handle virtually any make or model. We also offer same-day installations for generators, and you can depend on us for a full range of electrical and plumbing services as well. To schedule an appointment or simply request further information, call us today.