A normal body temperature at night is crucial for a restful sleep. You can find out here how our body temperature influences sleep and what tips you can use to prevent night sweats or freezing.
- The body temperature at a glance
- The body temperature while sleeping
- This is how sweating and freezing damage sleep
- Tips for optimal body temperature at night
1. Body temperature at a glance
In order for us to function healthily and normally every day and for all metabolic processes in our body to run smoothly, we humans need a certain body temperature. In a healthy adult, the normal core body temperature is usually between 36.5 °C and 37.5 °C, and the temperature on the surface of the skin is approx. 28°C - 37°C.
However, our body temperature never remains constant and is subject to natural fluctuations of up to 1 °C - depending on the time of day, state of health, activity level or hormonal state. Our brain is therefore always busy regulating the body's core temperature, adapting it to internal and external circumstances and ensuring that we neither overheat nor overcool.
For example, it increases when exposed to strong heat, physical exertion or in certain phases of the female cycle so that we remain productive despite increased energy consumption. On the other hand, if we calm down and relax, our metabolism and body temperature will also be reduced again. To prevent overheating or hypothermia, the body can take certain countermeasures - we sweat to lose heat through the skin or shiver to generate heat through muscle activity.
2. Body temperature during sleep
Sweating or freezing at night wakes us up! More than a third of all people say that feelings of heat and cold disturb their sleep. Body temperature naturally drops slowly in the evening and is lowest between 2 and 3 a.m. before slowly rising again in the morning. When we fall asleep, the less important body mechanisms shut down: muscle activity, blood pressure and heart rate decrease, we need less oxygen and our breathing slows. Veins and other blood vessels dilate, which releases heat and also reduces the surface temperature of our body at night.
3. Sweating and freezing damage sleep
When we sweat heavily or feel cold, our body takes action to regulate internal temperature and prevent hypothermia or overheating. This has a negative effect on the process of falling asleep in the evening and makes it more difficult to sleep through the night, for example because we push the covers aside at night or try to warm up or cool down in another way. Excessive sweat production at night can also disrupt sleep, as the accumulated moisture on the skin quickly creates an unpleasant sleeping environment.
So if the body temperature fluctuates too much during the night and as a result we have difficulty falling asleep or wake up frequently, the important deep sleep and REM sleep phases also suffer and we cannot really get a restful sleep.
4. Tips for optimal body temperature at night
With these simple measures you can help keep your body temperature within a healthy normal range throughout the night so that you can sleep well and your body can regenerate optimally during the night.
#1 The right sleeping environment
So that our body can naturally lower its core temperature and we can prepare for sleep, the bedroom should be neither too hot nor too cold. The generally recommended ambient temperature is therefore between 16 °C and 18 °C. Especially when in summer there are high outside temperatures or in winter the heating is incorrect, you should try to regulate the bedroom temperature through sufficient ventilation and the correct heating settings and ensure a good sleeping environment.
#2 Suitable sleeping textiles
Your sleeping accessories (pillows, blankets, mattresses) and your sleeping clothes have a direct influence on the surface temperature of the body and the feeling of warmth or cold at night. To avoid heat or moisture build-up, you should make sure that the duvet and clothing are not too warm or very tight. Nevertheless, you shouldn't completely do without clothing or a thin blanket so that you are protected from cold drafts, heat and sweat can be dissipated from the skin and a normal body temperature can be maintained. You can find out which material is best suited for your bed linen in which situation here.
Tip: Pillows & Duvets made of special cooling and warming fibers can effectively support the body in regulating body temperature.
#3 Relaxing evening routines
Strong physical activity requires high energy expenditure and stimulates circulation and metabolism, which also leads to an increase in body temperature. That's why you should avoid strenuous activities or extensive sports sessions in the last few hours before going to bed so that you can get enough rest in the evening and support the natural regulation of body temperature during sleep.
#4 The right diet in the evening
Our diet also has an influence on sleep and body temperature. In the evening, avoid heavy meals as well as foods high in sugar and caffeine and make sure you consume moderate alcohol consumption. Continuous, strenuous digestive processes and the stimulating effects of sugar, caffeine, etc. keep the body active and prevent the core body temperature from falling. Cold drinks also promote heat production in the body and even cause us to sweat more.
#5 The best tips for sleeping in summer and winter
Spring, summer, autumn and winter – our sleeping conditions change with the seasons. To ensure that your body temperature does not suffer from a poor sleeping environment, you should also adapt your sleeping habits to the ambient temperature.
You can find out which simple measures can help you sleep peacefully and restfully even on hot summer nights in this article.
And we have put together the best tricks for a relaxing winter night here for you.
The normal body temperature of an adult is 36.5 to 37.5 °C and varies by up to 1 °C depending on the time of day, health status, activity level or hormonal status.
A body temperature that is too high or too low at night can make it difficult to fall asleep, prevent you from staying asleep and significantly reduce the quality of your sleep.
Make sure your sleeping environment is cool and use a duvet, bed linen and sleeping clothes that are appropriate to the sleeping situation so that your core body temperature is regulated naturally and not by external influences.
Before going to bed, avoid heavy exertion, difficult-to-digest and stimulating foods that keep you active and promote a high body temperature.
Greetings and see you soon!