What's The Best
For Sleep?

Last Update: January, 2021

Illustration of a Boy Sleeping on a Thermometer

Struggling to fall asleep at night? If you find yourself in a battle with the thermostat at night, fluctuating between too hot and too cold, you're not alone.

Both your body and room temperature can play a crucial role in the quality of sleep you get, and we've done the research to show you how to find the right balance. [1]

“Over the last 40 years we gradually increased the temperature of our interior by over 10°F or 6°C” [2]

Could these rising temperatures be the cause of an increase in number of insomnia and other sleep disorder patients?

We’ll get to that in a minute.

First, let's see exactly what would be the ideal room condition for quality sleep.

What Is The Optimal Room Temperature For Sleeping?

Age Fahrenheit Celsius
Adults Icon Adults 60-72 degrees 15-22 degrees
Elderly Icon Elderly 66-70 degrees 19-21 degrees
Toddler and Baby Icon Babies/Toddlers 65-70 degrees 18-21 degrees

The best sleeping temperature for most adults is 60 to 72 degrees Fahrenheit (15 to 22 degrees Celsius).

The ideal temperature for elderly people is around 66 to 70°F (19-21°C). It is also vital to = keep the living room and bedroom temperature consistent with each other.

The perfect temperature for baby’s room should be slightly cooler around 65 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit (18 to 21 degrees Celsius).

A lot will depend on your personal preferences. Some people naturally sleep hot and others sleep cold. It’s perfectly normal to go below or above these recommended numbers to what makes you feel most comfortable.

You Will Find Out

Optimal Temperature For Sleep Icon

What Is The Optimal Room Temperature

Mattress Surface and Thermoregulation Correlation Icon

Can Mattress Surfaces Affect Thermoregulation

Sleeping In A Cold Environment Icon

Is Sleeping in a
Cold Environment Better

In Bed at Summer Night Icon

How To Cool the Bedroom in the Summer

Freezing In The Bed Icon

Sleep Temperature During Winter Time

Body Temperature Fluctuations During the Night and Day

Body Temperature Fluctuations Graph

Temperature fluctuations during the day and night

Our body temp can fluctuate by 2-3 degrees during 24 hours and is regulated by our circadian rhythm (internal body clock). [3]

Our thermoregulation changes as we age and we lose some of our ability to control it, but we can definitely change our environment and set a comfortable air temperature for a good night’s sleep.

How Bedroom Air Temperature Affects Your Sleep

Experts confirm that the ambient temperature and how you feel will affect the quality of your snooze.

Our bodies have internal thermostats, and when we go to bed, our brain sets this temperature to a few degrees lower than usual, says Dr. H. Craig Heller, Ph.D., a professor at Stanford University.

A slight drop in core temp will make you fall asleep faster, but if it’s too hot or too cold, our bodies might struggle, causing insomnia.

Can Mattress Surfaces Affect Thermoregulation?

Different mattress types and materials have different thermal properties.

Memory foam mattresses typically sleep much hotter since it traps heat, while hybrid beds or innerspring based ones usually fare much better in this arena due to improved airflow.

In 2020, there are several dozen brands that promote specialized cooling mattresses that will make even the hottest sleepers feel cool.

Sleeping On A Cooling Mattress Illustration

Is Sleeping in a Cold Environment Better?

Sleeping in a cooler room has many potential health benefits, not just for insomniacs.

It can help you fall asleep faster, it promotes burning of excess fat, and it helps regulate our hormone system and metabolism.

It also affects the quality of REM (rapid eye movement), the stage of sleep where you dream, process learning and restore your body.

Hot environments can cause you to spend less time in deep sleep, which can result in sleepiness during the day due to a lower overall quality of sleep.

Sleeping In a Cold Room Illustration

How To Cool the Bedroom in the Summer?

In the summertime, it’s essential to prepare during the day so you can avoid using air conditioning right before sleep.

Here are some tips to help you cool down your room and yourself during sleep:

  • Close the blinds (or curtains) and close the windows if the temperature is higher outside compared to your home.
  • After the sun sets, open everything and let the breeze cool your rooms.
  • Keep the windows open while you sleep.
  • Sleep at the lowest level (if you have a multi-story house) since heat tends to rise.
  • Use a fan (although some people think using a fan during the night is not the best idea especially if it is pointed directly at your body).
  • Use cooling sheets and consider pillows with cool covers.
  • Consider sleeping naked – It’s great!
Illustration Of a Man Sleeping On A Hot Summer Night

Sleep Temperature Considerations For Winter Time

During winter, especially in northern states where it gets really cold, it’s recommended to keep the room slightly warmer to accommodate night time drops in temperature.

Some people find it really hard to fall asleep during winter, so here are a few tips:

  • Layer Up – Multiple layers, including long sleeves and pajama pants, are a simple and effective way to keep your body warm and comfy during the winter months.
  • Use an Electric Blanket – An electric blanket creates a heavenly experience that it takes an act of superhuman strength and willpower to pry oneself away from.
  • Wear Socks – Warm feet = nice sleep.
  • Have a nice, hot tea before bed.
Illustration Of A Man Freezing In The Bed

Final Words

We hope that this article helped you find the best temperature for sleep for your particular needs or your loved ones.

As you can see, it’s not rocket science but not many of us knew this before doing some research.

Sources and References:

[3] What Happens to Your Body When You Sleep?, WebMD, December 2016

Sleep Advisor