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How Does Your Body Temperature Change Overnight?

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Whether it's the dead of winter or you're in the midst of summer, your body temperature goes through changes during your sleep cycle. The process, known as thermoregulation, affects the way your body behaves at night, as excessive heat or cold can impact your overall functioning during these hours.

But what is thermoregulation and what effects can it really have on the body? Let's break down the basics and learn about how this process can either help or hurt your REM cycle. 

The Science Behind Sleep
Everyone has his or her own unique sleep routine - some prefer snuggling with their partner while others prefer to be lulled to sleep by the sweet sounds of their portable music player. Either way, getting comfortable is a big part of being able to drift off. During the summer, you're likely blasting the fan, while the layers start to pile during the winter - no matter what your routine, you're trying to keep your body protected against the elements.

The process of either warming or cooling your body to account for external factors is known as thermoregulation, according to the Polyphasic Society. The source noted that during cooler months, body temperature naturally begins to dip during the night, and while keeping the heat running may seem like a great way to stay warm, this may be detrimental to your overall temperature.

Instead of purely focusing on warming the environment, people should heat their cores through a protein-packed diet and regular exercise.

Keeping Your Body Warm at Night
A little chilliness in the air may not only be crucial for decreasing your overall core temperature, but according to The New York Times, it may be more conducive to a good night's rest. The source noted that when temperatures in the room begin to dip, the body compensates by giving off radiant heat and dilating its blood vessels - both actions that can naturally lull the person to sleep.

Instead of turning up the heat this winter, keep your room at a steady 60 to 68 degrees for the best sleep environment. As the air in your surroundings begins to cool down, keep your bed warm with a heated blanket. This article can keep you from getting too cold while making your bed a bit more comfy at night.