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Good sleeping weather and other was to improve sleep

Posted by John T. Reed on

We are having what I call “good sleeping weather” today. Overcast, rainy, chilly, damp cold.
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Here in Northern California, it has not rained since January. Weather has been very nice—a drought actually. Satellite photos of northern CA show almost no white on top of the Sierra Nevada mountains. That white is where we get our summer water.
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I often take a 20-minute or so nap each afternoon. Today, I think I have already taken three, totally zonked, prolonged naps and it is not yet when I have my normal one. Maybe some sort of sleep deficit from dry February.
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I have a sleep number bed and may start renting hotel rooms that have them. I also have a Perfect Chair or Zero Gravity chair from Relax the Back. That chair was so perfect that when I reclined it at the store, my wife asked me how it was. I gave her such an emphatic thumbs up that she instantly bought two of them. We have since bought two more plus a patio version.
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I have the sheets that work best for me—flannel. I think. I have not systematically tried different ones.
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I have a memory foam pillow of the right thickness and softness and take in on all trips including back packing in the Grand Canyon.
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I thought about a weighted blanket as a sort of invention, then I read they already exist. I need to try one.
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There is a lot of attention to optimal sleep conditions today, but I have not seen anything on what I call good sleeping weather.
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1. If you are affected the same as me by the gloomy damp weather, when it occurs, carpe napem. Allocate more time to sleeping and napping that day if you can. It is what the military calls a “target of opportunity.” An old saying says, “make hay while the sun shines.” By the same token, “take nap when the rain falls.”
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2. I am a big advocate of putting a great deal of thought and experimentation into where you live. If sleep is really important to you, consider living where the weather best facilitates sleep. They have cool, damp weather all along the CA, OR, and WA coast. Alaska, too, although the midnight sun may keep you awake.
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3. Altitude may be a sleep quality variable. I have never lived at high altitude. But I visited it, most recently at Lake Tahoe at Christmas. I zonked out all day the second day I was in Fort Collins years ago but it has not affected me like that since then.
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4. I wonder if a humidifier would improve my sleep quality—artificial good sleeping weather.
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5. Temperature is clearly a huge factor for me and my wife. We have to be in the 67º range to get to sleep. Hotter and we can’t sleep. A motel we stayed in in Salt LAke City kept sneaking the temperature up after we were asleep. We got their AAA approval revoked. We can handle colder with blankets and clothes like socks, long johns, tee shirts.
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Am I over emphasizing sleep? No. It is where you spend a third of your day. It affects your health in general.
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I appreciate thoughts and suggestions from readers on these factors and maybe others I have not mentioned.

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