3 Seasonal Changes that Can Interfere with Healthy Sleep

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Getting a healthy night’s sleep is something that all of us want. Unfortunately, things like the change in seasons can drastically affect our ability to get those much-needed zs. To better remedy the problems that seasonal changes bring to our sleep, it helps to first understand the reasons why.

Shorter Days Means Less Vitamin D

We all know that Vitamin D comes from milk and sunlight. The specific type of Vitamin D that you get from sunlight is called Vitamin D3. This vitamin is vital to serotonin production in our bodies. Serotonin is a major component of our sleep-wake cycles. When we don’t get enough Vitamin D3 from the sunlight, our serotonin levels go down. This can create daytime drowsiness and depression. These both are linked to reduced sleep efficiency, meaning your overall quality of sleep decreases.

Air Temperature Can Affect Sleep

If you’ve ever spent a night in a hot room without air conditioning, you know it can be difficult to fall asleep. The onset of sleep and our circadian rhythms are highly influenced by the temperature of our bodies. In the hot summer months, this can mean a loss of sleep for those without air conditioning. It pays to look into air conditioning services to ensure that you can keep cooler ambient air in your bedroom. You should be aiming for between 60 and 70 degrees. This is going to vary depending on your sheet materials, clothing, and so forth. The trick is to find a cool temperature that works to put your body to sleep.

Longer Days Means Less Melatonin

In the long summer months, you can expect to enjoy the natural sunlight late into the evening hours. While this may be nice for outdoor activities and getting adequate levels of Vitamin D3, it can really affect your melatonin production. This is a hormone that regulates your sleep and wake cycles. The natural light of the sun will suppress melatonin production, keeping you awake in the evenings. It’s a good idea to spend at least an hour or so before bedtime inside away from the sun. This will allow your body’s natural melatonin production to take over.

The human body can be greatly affected by the seasons, especially when it comes to getting healthy sleep. As you can tell from the three instances above, all the seasons have their own way of messing with our sleep cycles. By better understanding how each season can possibly affect your sleep cycle, you can better prepare to hinder its effect on your own body.