Rachel Kelly, Special to CTVNews.ca
Published Tuesday, June 12, 2018 12:32PM EDT

Could new sheets and a melting bucket of ice be the key to getting a better night’s sleep this summer? According to sleep experts, tricks for keeping cool are essential for sleeping well this season.

“If our body is trying too hard to regulate its temperature throughout the night, we are not able to get that restorative sleep,” sleep consultant Alanna McGinn told CTV’s Your Morning on Tuesday.

Between rising temperatures and summer parties, it can be a struggle to maintain good sleep hygiene when the weather gets hot. Poor sleep habits in the summer can actually contribute to a year-round feeling of exhaustion.

“Naturally your body gets less sleep in the summer,” McGinn told CTV’s Your Morning. “But what we don’t want to do is pick up those bad habits in the summer and then go into the winter over-tired.”

Getting a good summer sleep is all about creating the right environment, she said. McGinn shared the following tips on CTV’s Your Morning about keeping cool and comfortable for the summer nights:

DIY air conditioner: Use a fan to keep cool air circulating. If you don’t have air conditioning, McGinn suggests putting frozen water bottles or a bucket of ice in your room. “As the water melts, the cool air evaporates, and your room is cooler,” she said.

Change your sheets: McGinn suggests swapping out your whole linen set to something lighter. Trade your duvet for a light comforter, invest in low-thread count cotton or linen sheets, and remove your mattress pad to stop heat from getting trapped.

Keep your pyjamas light: Natural fibres such as cotton and bamboo are the best options for pyjamas that will keep you cool. If you sweat a lot at night or are a woman going through menopause, performance fabrics such as the kind found in workout clothes can help keep you cool and wick away moisture.

Block it out: Blackout blinds are a must-have for those who like to sleep in and block the morning light out. They also help keep external heat out while sealing cool air into the room. McGinn recommends them especially for children’s bedrooms.

Keep your kids asleep: Between birds chirping and lawn mowers revving, summer mornings can be anything but peaceful, especially for young active kids. “If our kids aren’t sleeping, we’re not sleeping,” McGinn said. Using a white noise machine in the morning to help block out the noisy summer sounds in the morning.

Follow the 80/20 rule: Between barbecues, patios, and late-night fireworks, who really has time to sleep in the summer? When it comes to late summer nights, McGinn says to use moderation. Eighty per cent of the time you should be aiming for a healthy night’s sleep, while the other 20 per cent can be for the inevitable summer occasions that you can’t miss out on.