Tips to Get Sleep on Long Summer Days

8 July 2021

There are many reasons why it’s difficult to sleep in the summer (or at least why people find it more difficult). Some common complaints about summer sleep are:

  • You have trouble drifting off to sleep at night, but you don’t struggle to stay asleep during the day.
  • You lie awake in bed for hours and can’t fall asleep – your body seems to be tight as a drum.

Does having more hours of sunlight affect your sleep? Sleeping when it’s bright outside can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to ruin your rest. Yes, more daylight means you’ll be exposed to more light in the evenings and throughout the night. Your body clock is used to that schedule during the summer months because that’s when day and night are the longest in any given year.

Why is it harder to sleep in the summer?

According to a study from Dr. Andrew Weil, a doctor who specializes in integrative medicine, some of the top reasons for summer sleeplessness are:

  • It’s too hot. As a result, some people find themselves sleeping on the coolest surface they can see during the warmer months.
  • A person’s body clock is set to sleep when it’s dark and wake up when it’s light.
  • Your body clock regulates how your body reacts day and night by controlling your biological processes, such as the release of hormones and the amount of melatonin in the blood that can influence your sleep/wake cycle.

Don’t fret; there a few things you can do to maintain your sleep pattern and get more rest during the summer months:

  1. Keep a regular sleep schedule: If you don’t typically have trouble sleeping, don’t let the summer affect your schedule too much. Instead, try to maintain a regular sleep schedule even during the summer by going to bed and waking up simultaneously every day. Use blackout curtains or shades that keep out most light if you can’t fall asleep quickly.
  2. Stay cool during the day: If you find it difficult to fall asleep at night, try getting out and about during the day instead.
  3. Drink milk: Milk contains hormones that help regulate sleep rhythms, and drinking a glass of milk before bed or a few hours before can help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. This is why people suggest having a warm glass of milk before bed.
  4. Exercise: If you exercise in the morning, don’t skip out on your workout because you’re afraid of being outside later. If you go swimming in the morning and take an afternoon nap, you’ll be fine for the rest of the day.
  5. Try a sleep aid: If you’re having trouble sleeping, talk to your doctor about what type of sleep aid would work best for you. There are many different types of sleep aids on the market, but they can have side effects. For example, some medications can reduce your alertness very close to drowsiness before falling asleep, whereas others keep you awake longer.

Summer sleep is tough for everyone. But it doesn’t have to be. Maintain a regular sleep schedule and try some of these tips to help you get more rest during the summer months.

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