Air conditioners allow us to work uninterrupted during the hot summer days and help us get a good night’s sleep when it’s warm and humid outside. This makes ACs an immensely useful invention and a true blessing. But as with any tool or device, the outcome usually depends on the manner of usage. Air conditioners are no different and can produce negative outcomes if used poorly. But is one of those negative outcomes related to sleep? We’ll explore this question below.
You’ve probably heard some people argue that sleeping with air conditioning has a negative impact on health. So is it bad to sleep with air conditioners on? Science says otherwise. In fact, there are studies out there which claim that sleeping at a lower room temperature improves sleep quality.
So, why is this myth so popular? Well, there may be quite a few root origins. Some of them are:
- Sometimes people wake up with aches in different parts of the bodies.
- They cannot sleep without turning on the AC.
- This one might sound funny, but it’s a fact that some parents tell their children that keeping the AC on will make them sick, just to lower their electric bills. The effectiveness of this tactic has made it into a myth.
But let’s move beyond the myths and discuss the situations in which an AC has positive effects.
Positive Aspects of Sleeping with the AC on
- Your body needs to lower its temperature in order to sleep. So, a lower room temperature helps the body in this function. The ideal room temperature for healthy sleep is between 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the National Sleep Foundation.
- The filtration system in modern ACs helps provide cleaner air, which can prevent allergies and breathing problems.
- Summer nights are often humid, and humidity provides the breeding ground for mold and microorganisms. Sleeping with your AC on can lower the humidity level, making the environment healthier.
- Apart from all the science, let’s use intuition. Would you prefer to sleep in a hot, sweaty environment? Or does it sound better to have a cool room and a comforter to sleep in? Yes, the second option sounds way more tempting for a good night’s sleep.
- Better sleep will naturally improve your overall lifestyle. It can improve your productivity, mental health, mood, fitness, and can even help produce good hormones.
Now let’s discuss the negative effects and some best practices to counter these effects.
Negative Aspects of Sleeping with the AC on
- You may wake up all sore if you direct the air jet directly on you. The best practice is to direct it upwards. Another preventive course of action is to turn the AC on before bedtime, so you can switch it off later, either manually or by using the timer.
- If you don’t clean the filters of your AC timely, it can spread perilous microorganisms into the environment of your room.
- Finding the right room temperature is important. Your sleep may be disturbed if the temperature is too low or too high.
- Depending on the settings of your AC, it might absorb too much moisture, making the environment too dry. This can lead to dry & stretchy skin, dehydration, and breathing problems. Using the timer and keeping a source of ventilation can solve this issue.
- If you have an old model AC, it might make a certain revving noise which can adversely affect the quality of your sleep.
- Your body might develop a habit of sleeping with the AC on. This association might disturb your sleep at the change of the season. The good news is that this will be temporary.
- A sudden change of temperature can disturb your body. That’s why it’s always best to let your body get prepared before you go out into different temperatures.
So the next time you see someone discussing whether it’s bad to sleep with the air conditioners on, you can present them with the above points.