Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night completely drenched in sweat, even though the room’s temperature is not very warm? If your answer is yes, then you should read on.
The sheets you put on your bed contribute a lot to the peacefulness of your sleep. If your sheets are uncomfortable, it is highly likely that you toss and turn in bed all night and don’t get a proper night’s rest. If your problem is specifically waking up at night feeling too hot and sweaty, you need to change the sheets.
Why are my sheets sweaty?
While some can be quick to say that we sweat at night because the air conditioning’s temperature is not low enough, people who wake up with sweat in frigid cold temperatures know that’s not the case. There can be several other reasons why you might be sweating at night.
Let’s take a look at the main reasons why your sheets are wet with perspiration every night:
Bed or Bed Sheets
One of the main reasons why some people can’t sleep peacefully through the night is because their sheets or beds do not regulate the temperature of their bodies. This means that either the mattress or bedsheet does not provide adequate airflow for your body to breathe. The breathability of the fabric matters a lot in contributing to a comfortable sleep.
Maybe there is some recurring problem or stress that you have been carrying in the back of your mind, which becomes active during your sleep. A bad dream or nightmare can also cause your heart to beat faster, leading to rapid breathing and stress-induced sweats.
There are also several medical conditions such as anxiety, thyroid-related issues, sleep apnea, neurological conditions, and drug addictions that can cause you to wake up in a puddle of sweat even on the coldest of nights.
Alcohol can change your core body temperature and cause you to sweat during your sleep, as it affects the nervous system. Having alcohol before bed each time can make your sleep sweats more persistent and uncomfortable.
The best way to ensure that your night sweats go away for good is to create an environment that helps you relax and feel comfortable as much as possible. Putting on candles, calming music, and cranking the AC up to its lowest temperature are all good options, but do not forget to change your sheets.
Make sure that the sheets you put on are breathable and prevent overheating. Also, make sure that if you do not have an air conditioner, the windows are open, and you have a glass of cold water by your bedside.
Bed Sheets to keep you cool through the night
By now, you have probably understood that thick sheets without any breathability can induce night sweats. To maximize the airflow during the night, look for bedsheets that are lightweight, moisture-wicking, and absorbent.
Here are some fabrics that can help your body’s core temperature stay low at night:
Bamboo: 100% bamboo sheets are surprisingly even cooler than cotton. They are durable, soft, breathable, and environmentally friendly as well. In fact, bamboo sheets are known to keep your body temperature 3 degrees cooler than other materials.
100% Egyptian Cotton: Egyptian cotton is considered to be one of the best materials to keep you feeling cool and comfortable all through the night. They are soft, durable, and maximize airflow so that you do not feel hot or sweaty during your sleep.
Linen: Linen is one of the best materials to keep you cool and cozy through the night. It's highly breathable, soft, and lightweight. High-quality linen can be super durable for years as well, making it an excellent summer option.
Eucalyptus: Apart from using less water and saving the environment, eucalyptus sheets are 3 times more breathable and 2 times softer than regular cotton fabric. If the cotton is not 100% pure, it can lead to adverse reactions such as trapping bacteria and moisture and making it difficult to sleep. Eucalyptus, on the other hand, is made from lyocell fabric, which naturally regulates the body temperature and keeps you cool and comfortable through the night.
Performance Polyester: With many breakthroughs in science and technology, polyester fabrics have also come a long way. Some polyester sheets are designed with numerous micropores, making them ideal for wicking out moisture and helping your skin breathe during the night. If you are prone to night sweats, performance polyester can help your body breathe and stay cool while sleeping. However, do not purchase regular polyester sheets if you get night sweats. Be sure to look for those that have the words ‘moisture-wicking’ or ‘performance polyester’ written on them.
Apart from the fabric, other factors that help keep your body’s temperature low at night include:
Thread count refers to the number of threads present in a square inch of the fabric, and it can determine how soft and luxurious your sheets are. Thread counts can range from around 200 to 1000, but a higher thread count doesn’t always mean that your sheets will be of good quality. Premium sheets can have a thread count of 200-500 and still be quite comfortable.
The weave of the fabric can cause a sheet to be soft, rough, silky, etc. Some common weave types and their qualities include:
Percale: Percale is a very common weave type that can be found in many bedsheets. It is a type of weave that can be a bit crisp and stiff at first, but it is still soft and breathable, making it perfect for warmer nights.
Jersey: Jersey sheets are not stitched or woven; rather, they are knit. They have a more stretchy feeling but are soft and comfortable. They are not crisp or rough but have the feel of an old cotton fabric, which makes them a great bedding option for the cozy winters. However, they trap more heat than you can realize, which is not ideal for someone already experiencing night sweats.
Sateen: Sateen fabrics are made from satin weave, which gives them that soft, luxurious, and silky exterior. They are soft and breathable, making them the perfect companion for a hot person. Silk helps ventilate the extra moisture you exude at night but does not make your skin dry or rough. Silk is also softer than percale, which makes it more wrinkle-resistant.
Microfiber: This is usually made with a plain-weave pattern that is either synthetic or constructed with rayon (a fiber created from regenerated cellulose). Since microfiber weave is more tightly woven, it offers little to no breathability, which makes it a poor option for someone who feels warm during the night.
Flannel: Flannel is created from a mesh of both cotton and wool, which is then engineered to give a softer and cozier feel. The weight of this fabric is heavy, which means it is designed for insulation, so if you’re a hot sleeper, this weave type is not for you.
Frequently Asked Questions About Night Sweats
Waking up in a puddle of sweat can be distressing. Everyone has different skin types and reasons for sweating, which means that you need to choose the right sheet suited for your problem. If you’re not sure what to go for, the following FAQs might help you narrow down your options.
How do I know Which Sheet Suits Me?
Night sweats are one of the top reasons why people invest in breathable and cooling sheets, especially if you’re a woman going through menopause. Natural material is good for people who suffer from mild sweating during the night, while synthetic materials are the better option for people who sweat heavily. It can be hard to find the right cooling sheet because not each one is made for your skin type.
Everyone’s body is different, and usually, when you sweat, it’s the body’s way of cooling down. Breathable sheets help with the ventilation of the moisture released from your skin, while absorbent sheets absorb perspiration. Moisture-wicking sheets allow the sweat to be released to the surface of the sheet so that it can be evaporated, making you feel less sweaty and drier.
How do I find the Right Cooling Sheet for Night Sweats?
As mentioned before, the material and construction of the sheet give you an idea of what kind of sheet you need to purchase for your particular problem. Natural materials such as cotton are better for people who perspire moderately, as fabrics such as cotton have a limit to how much sweat they can absorb.
Synthetic materials such as microfiber, performance polyester, and other blends can help you get rid of sweat and perspiration more than any natural material. This is because synthetic fabrics wick out moisture while natural fabrics absorb it. This makes synthetic bed sheets much better for people who suffer from heavy sweating.
Which Cotton is Cooling for Sweaty Sleepers?
‘Superior cotton’ comes in three different forms: Egyptian, Pima, and Supima cotton. While Egyptian cotton is a term that has been abused by many manufacturers, it is considered a gold standard for luxury and comfort. Authentic Egyptian cotton is super soft, durable, and breathable. However, many manufacturers sell inauthentic Egyptian cotton, and there’s no way to check if their claims are true or false.
Pima cotton is grown in the US, Australia, and Peru, and it is considered better than regular cotton. This is because the fibers of Pima cotton are smoother, finer, and softer. They are also super lightweight and breathable, making them ideal for sweaty sleepers. However, they carry the same risk as with Egyptian cotton - false manufacturer claims.
Supima cotton is the best cotton for regulating your body temperature and keeping it cool and comfortable throughout the night. It is 100% harvested in America and is highly reliable because it is heavily regulated. However, it is expensive and scarce, which makes it an uncommon find. Supima cotton factories are also inspected regularly to make sure there is no ingenuity or synthetic cotton being added to the mix.
Sleeping comfortably should be a priority for every individual, especially if you work. A busy schedule and a clear mindset can only be achieved with a proper night’s rest. Your body needs to recharge and get ready for the next day, and this can only happen if your bedding promotes healthy, comfortable sleep.
Whatever the reason is for your nighttime sweats, getting the right sheet and creating a cool environment can definitely promote better sleep. So, the next time you wake up in a puddle of sweat, you know what to do!