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Sleeping in hot weather

Discussion in 'Lifestyle Management' started by Sarah94, Aug 1, 2020 at 7:23 PM.

  1. Sarah94

    Sarah94 Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    As the title says.

    How???

    I've been getting through so far because I'm prescribed zopiclone which I'm allowed to use a maximum of twice a week. The *very hot* weather this summer has so far happened in short clusters of days, so I've been able to use zopiclone for all the really hot ones without going over my limit. But now we've got a run of at least 6 very hot* days coming up soon. (Technically this period spans two separate weeks on the calendar, but it would be a bad idea for me to take 4 zopiclone tablets in 6 days!) And after 6 very hot days, it will take ages for the house to cool down, given that the weather in the subsequent days is going to be hot* too, so it'll probably be highly unpleasant for several more days.

    How. Do. I. Get. To. Sleep?

    * In my totally scientific classification system, I refer to days with maximum temperatures of 23-26 C as "hot", and to 27 and above as "very hot". :p
     
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  2. Leila

    Leila Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I use a cooling mat for dogs & fans & an air cooler (where you put cold water and ice cubes in a container at the back).

    And an ice pack for the head.

    For me, personally, Mirtazapin, Vivinox (antihistamine) and Paracetamol help me sleep better (no recommensation, just my experience)
     
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  3. Trish

    Trish Moderator Staff Member

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    I agree with trying whatever cooling methods you can manage, and if you have prescription drugs using them as prescribed. I personally prefer not to use any sleep medication, as I'm prone to side effects. Edit to add - but I do use pain medication or a gentle herbal remedy sometimes.

    The only way I can find to cope with nights when I can't sleep, for whatever reason, is to tell myself it doesn't matter if I don't sleep, and to make sure I have things to distract me, such as audiobooks, real books, simple games to play on my phone, etc.

    Then I settle down in bed with my activities to hand, and if I've laid awake for a while and don't drop off naturally, I get on with an activity until I feel sleepy again, and try another short period of seeing if I fall asleep. If it means I get very little sleep for a night or two, it just means I might sleep better the next night, and I try not to let it worry me.
     
  4. Invisible Woman

    Invisible Woman Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I echo some of the suggestions above.

    If you've got medication then use that. I couldn't handle zopiclone or other alternatives such as a sedating anti histamine. I use a slow release melatonin. Having said that - it's only an aide and I still sometimes struggle.

    Like @Leila, I have bought a cooling dog mat. It'll be a race to see who gets it first, me or IRD. It's a giant one so maybe we'll share? It's one of those mats where cooling triggered by your weight.

    You can also get cooling pillows and if you do need to sit up there are also gel filled scarves available - you soak them in cold water and the gel retains it so it stops it getting messy. Not suitable for sleeping though.

    I can't use a fan as IM whinges but if you do try one maybe keep some earplugs on hand as the noise can be too.much

    Like @Trish says, if you can accept it's going to happen and you'll eventually readjust I find that works better than worrying or putting pressure on myself.

    If I can't sleep I'll use my kindle paperwhite to read (fiction). I try to avoid using my phone or tablet even though I use blue screen filters as they wake me up. Have a plan - what (if any) activities can you do that won't stimulate your brain?

    Sometimes, I'll get up and get myself a cuppa. I tend to drink decaff tea but in hot weather I find mint tea cooling and refreshing.

    I find it's a lot easier to just accept - if I've been awake and needed to read during the night then I need to allow myself some extra TLC the following day(s). That may well mean I have to spend 95% of the day in bed.
     
  5. JemPD

    JemPD Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I use doxylamine succinate 25mg, the brand i use is kirkland sleep aid.
    i bought it from the US but i dont know if it's available on it's own in uk. Its an old fashioned anti-histamine like the non-herbal version of nytol (which is diphenhydramine) but i find it much more effective than that. It does make me drowsy & stay drowsy throughout the following morning but i dont mind that. It can only be used occasionally as the body builds up tolerance to it. I do find it works to help me sleep when it's hot even if i can only take it occasionally. And i find no other side effects with it.

    The other thing i do is to get a very thin piece of cotton fabric (the one i use is an ancient sarong as it's just the right size) and i wet it through with cool water & then ring it out as well as i can, & then I drape it over myself from chest downwards - i find my legs & feet throb when it's hot so i make sure the soles of my feet are toughing the cool damp fabric. And i sometimes get a second one for around my neck/shoulders. It's a little uncomfortable being wet, but much preferable to the agony of the heat & the only thing i have ever found to cool me down a little. I cant tolerate any kind of fan as i cant cope with the sound even with ear plugs.
     
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  6. JemPD

    JemPD Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    @Invisible Woman what are these dog cooling mats? I never heard of them will have to investigate
     
  7. Arnie Pye

    Arnie Pye Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I bought one of these last year :

    https://www.tesco.com/groceries/en-GB/products/298595370

    I think it's really rather good. It swivels (you can turn the swivelling on or off). You can alter the up/down angle. It has two speeds. And it's quiet. I have tied my fan to a stand I happen to have. I use cable ties to keep it secure so that it doesn't fall off if it gets bumped. I found it fairly easy to put together - you only need a small screwdriver.
     
  8. Kitty

    Kitty Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I just don't worry about it. If I'm still awake after a couple of hours, I get up and do something – pick up a book, put the World Service on, poddle out into the garden, eat a slice of toast, or whatever. When I feel I need to go back to bed, I do.

    I know I'll sleep at some stage, even if my usual schedule's gone a bit skew whiff.
     
  9. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I have a ceiling fan right over top of my bed. Plus I keep my two windows wide open and the blinds open to let in any cool night air.
     
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  10. Invisible Woman

    Invisible Woman Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    They are gel filled pads that are wipe clean. The gel is activated by the pressure of the dog's weight. Unlike previous ones you don't have to keep them in the freezer and there is no charging etc.

    Mine doesn't give a weight limit, just a size and it's for extra large dogs so I would think it would cope with my weight. It does warn that it's not suitable for children though. It also states that it's non toxic.

    This is an example of a random one in Amazon :



    There may be a human version available. I originally bought mine for the dog but if he's okay & I'm overheating..... or possibly he might permit me to share. They're wipe clean too.
     
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  11. Rosie

    Rosie Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I find a wet fluffy tea towel over the chest and belly works best for me.
     
  12. NelliePledge

    NelliePledge Moderator Staff Member

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    My tactic is a physio gel pack frozen wrapped round a couple of times in a cotton scarf. Applied to the back of my neck. I find it very effective at cooling me down. If extremely hot a second pack deployed to front torso like the opposite of a hot water bottle.

    If able to take a bath lying in tepid water for several minutes before going to bed brings body temp down as well and I leave the water in the tub in case I need to use it again in the night. Although since I started using the gel packs I’ve not needed to get back into the bath.

    keeping all the curtains and blinds closed on a hot day really helps keep bedrooms cool and only opening windows that are on shady side of the building.
     
  13. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Soaking your feet in a bowl of cool water really helps to cool down also.
     
  14. Sarah94

    Sarah94 Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Could you possibly give me a link to an example of this product please? Thanks!
     
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  15. Invisible Woman

    Invisible Woman Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Yeah, should have thought of that. Sorry, busy day here yesterday. This looks pretty much like the one I bought. If memory serves I got mine a few years back from amazon -

     
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  16. Invisible Woman

    Invisible Woman Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Also should have said - I've not tried the cooling dog mat yet but, if I put it on a carpet or on my bed, I'll be putting a large towel down underneath, just in case.

    I don't know if it will radiate any dampness down or cause any staining should the thing decide to leak any gel.
     
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  17. JemPD

    JemPD Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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