Here’s Why Most People Can’t Fall Asleep Without a Blanket
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In the warmer months, many people have already swapped toasted, overcrowded comforters for lighter, more breathable sheets. If you’re anything like me, you probably expect those hot nights when staying cool while you sleep is the ultimate struggle. You may have noticed that no matter how high the temperatures get, you just can’t kick your blanket to the side of the road. Something has to cover you to get a sound sleep. There is a scientific reason for this, according to sleep experts.
Terry Cralle, RN and educator with the American Sleep Association, says sleeping under cover has been ingrained in us since childhood. “From a behavioral standpoint, most of us have associated blankets with comfort, relaxation, bedtime, and sleeping since childhood,” she told AT. “Therefore, they serve as an indication that it is time to sleep.” In addition to the familiar feeling of being “hidden”, there is also the scientific fact that our body temperature drops during the REM (Rapid Eye Movement) phase of sleep. “We lose the ability to regulate the temperature. So a blanket, sheet or duvet can help ensure that your temperature does not get too low and sleep is disturbed,” said Cralle.
No matter how hot you sleep, warmth will always be an integral part of a good night’s sleep. Our circadian rhythms (often called the “body clock”) can make us sleepy or alert depending on the time of day, and Cralle explains that this rhythm is always related to body temperature. “Our body temperature is lowest a few hours before we wake up. Then a blanket is practical, ”she says.
For hot sleepers who want to feel comfortable and safe with lighter beds, we’ve rounded up the best bed options for the summer.
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