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The optimal room temperature to improve sleep quality

The optimal room temperature to improve sleep quality

September 05, 2023
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Ensuring a good night's sleep is one of the secrets of a long life, together with a healthy and balanced diet, an active lifestyle and avoiding some bad habits such as smoking and drinking too much alcohol. However, unlike other lifestyle choices that are directly under our control, getting the right amount of sleep and waking up rested can be much more difficult. In fact, several factors combine to determine whether our night will be characterized by a regenerating or, on the contrary, disturbed sleep. The research we are talking about today is very recent and focuses on the right temperature that the room should have to allow us to rest well. The study was published in the journal Science of the Total Environment by a group of researchers from Harvard Medical School in Boston and the Marcus Institute for Aging Research, Boston (Baniassadi et al, Science of the Total Environment, Jul 2023).

How room temperature affects sleep, study

Researchers recruited 50 adults. Volunteers were asked to wear motion-tracking devices to assess sleep quality. Not only that, temperature sensors have been installed in the bedrooms. In all, 11,000 nights of data were acquired. What has emerged is that the optimal temperature to ensure a good restful sleep is individual but that in general this should remain in the range of 20-25° C. In fact, below and above this range, scientists have seen a significant reduction in sleep efficiency, even by 10%. Sleep efficiency is the ratio between the time actually spent asleep and the time dedicated to sleep, which however also includes the time to fall asleep and the night awakenings. Hence the importance of avoiding rooms that are overheated in summer or too cold in winter.

Other habits that help you sleep well

In addition to the room temperature, which, as we have seen, shouldn't drop below 20° C and exceed 25° C, other habits contribute to a good restful sleep. For example, a good habit is certainly to create darkness in the room by reducing all sources of light. Not only that, if you happen to wake up, perhaps to go to the bathroom, it's important to turn on a few dim lights so as not to signal to the brain that it's already day and it's time to start daily activities. Then, it is a good choice to avoid large and heavy meals in the evening and immediately after bedtime. Also avoid activities that are too stimulating in the evening hours.


Ensuring a good night's sleep that makes you wake up refreshed and full of energy is an important and protective factor for health. A disturbed sleep, in fact, if it occurs continuously and for a long time, can cause some disorders, such as anxiety, depression, cardiovascular problems, a slowdown in cognitive function, poor memory and concentration, hypertension and diabetes. It should be emphasized once again that these conditions can only occur in the long term, not after a sleepless night or even a slightly longer period in which, for various reasons, we can sleep badly. In any case, we now know that we have some allies to ensure a good restful sleep, as we could see in today's article.

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