When it comes to achieving a solid night’s sleep, a cool room is a must. But it turns out that warming the body, as counterintuitive as that sounds, is equally important.
According to renowned sleep scientist and author Jessa Gamble, a huge component of our circadian rhythm throughout the day is temperature regulation. Before we are ready to head to bed, the body’s temperature naturally drops, which activates other automatic reactions that prepare us for sleep. When this shift happens, body heat escapes through the skin, which is why you may notice your skin feeling warmer at nighttime.
However, according to research, we don’t often retire to our bedrooms as close to this change as we should, which means the body cools too much and the internal temperature ends up disrupting our sleep rather than enabling it. Luckily, a warm shower in the evening has the ability to prolong the powering-down effect, “fluffing that psychological pillow,” as researchers put it. By keeping your body feeling warm (but not hot!) as you crawl clean in between your bedsheets, nice and relaxed, you’re one step closer to drifting off soundly to dreamland.
If you’re usually a morning shower person, check out the infographic fromLUNA below to learn how a tweak to your current routine could actually benefit your sleep quality.