Do you ever wake up and notice you’re sweating more than usual? There are several reasons why your bedding is damp in the morning, and the relative humidity in your bedroom could be to blame.
The ideal humidity level for sleeping is between 40% and 60%. When you’re in this range, you’ll get the best night’s sleep possible and reap the health benefits of sleeping.
In this guide, we’ll discuss a number of telltale signs to indicate that the humidity in your room is abnormal and some straightforward actions that you can take to rectify the situation.
Effects of Humidity Level on Our Sleep
Both high and low levels of indoor humidity are disruptive to your sleep.
When the humidity levels are low, your skin may become dry and flaky; in response, your body may produce more oil than necessary.
Also, dry air (caused by low humidity) may cause nighttime breathing difficulties since it negatively affects your respiratory system and increases the risk of infections. The low humidity levels irritate your eyes and nasal and throat airways, too.
However, sleep difficulties and disruptions in the different sleep phases might result from breathing in air with high levels of humidity, which can also cause increased overnight sweating.
In addition to that, humidity increases the prevalence of molds and dust mites, which may produce allergy symptoms, especially while sleeping. Because of this, people with allergies or asthma may feel their symptoms worsen while they sleep.
The Best Humidity Level for Sleeping
Environmental Protection Agency guidelines recommend a relative humidity level of no more than 60% within a building.
Further research shows a better range is between 40-60%. Thus, this is the ideal relative humidity for your home’s common areas, including the living room, bedrooms, and stairwells. The humidity levels in your kitchen and bathroom, which tend to produce more moisture, should be kept between 50-70%.
How Can I Tell if My Bedroom’s Humidity Level Needs to Be Changed?
Your bedroom humidity level can be higher or lower than the recommended one, and there are indicators for both low and high levels.
Signs That Humidity Levels Need to Be Increased:
- Severe conditions of eczema and dry skin
- Itchy throat and nose
- Nose bleeds
- Dry eyes
- The appearance of cracks in wooden features
Signs That Humidity Levels Need to Be Reduced:
- Growing sensitivity to allergens
- Presence of mold and mildew
- Musty morning odor
- Peeling or bubbling paint on the walls
- Swollen wooden components
Measuring Humidity Levels
You can also use certain devices to measure the humidity levels in your bedroom. Here are two of them:
End the guesswork and discover whether or not you have a humidity issue in your bedroom using a hygrometer.
A hygrometer, also known as a humidity sensor, is a compact, affordable, and simple tool that can determine whether the humidity in your bedroom or any given space is optimal. Mechanical and electronic hygrometers are the two most common hygrometers in homes today. Either type will serve your home needs if used and calibrated correctly.
Once you have the facts about your bedroom, you can decide if any changes should be made and, if so, what those changes should be.
It’s important that you keep your hygrometer away from direct heat sources like radiators, heat registers, and chimneys. Also, keep in mind that a hygrometer can’t give quick results. So adjusting to new conditions, like a shift in humidity levels, might take one to two hours.
We can say that a humidistat is an advanced hygrometer. This is because it can read the relative humidity level in your bedroom and work with other devices to regulate it.
To illustrate, first, humidistats detect whether the relative humidity in a room is too low or too high. Then, they activate the humidifier or dehumidifier, respectively. They function similarly to a home’s thermostat, and they’re often linked to an HVAC system, just like the thermostat is connected to the heating system.
Note that whenever you find out that humidity is affecting your health or the quality of your sleep, it’s important to take corrective measures before the situation worsens.
Which Is Better, a Dry or a Humid Bedroom?
For maximum comfort and health benefits, it’s preferable if the air is neither too dry nor too humid. As previously mentioned, if you keep the humidity level between 40-60%, you shouldn’t worry about any adverse effects.
However, while both low and high humidity levels are hazardous to one’s health, the negative effects of low humidity are felt more acutely by the general public.
Note that your bedroom may be too dry or humid, depending on where you live, the average temperature at night, and how you normally sleep. Because of this, you should rethink your stance on bedroom humidity.
Factors Affecting Humidity Levels
Humidity changes occur because many factors in the environment influence how much moisture is in the air. Let’s have a quick look at some of them.
Air Conditioning and Ventilation
The goal of ventilation and air conditioning is to maintain a comfortable temperature and relative humidity level in a building by removing stale air and bringing in new, fresh air. Mold and condensation can form if the humidity level becomes too high due to a lack of ventilation.
The airtightness of a building and the materials used to construct it have a significant impact on humidity. A more airtight structure makes regulating temperatures and humidity more difficult. Moreover, materials such as reinforced concrete make it difficult to control indoor humidity, resulting in higher humidity levels.
The humidity level in your room is also determined by the temperature. The relative humidity rises as the temperature falls (and vice versa). As a result, temperature and humidity are inextricably linked.
11 Tips to Create Perfect Bedroom Humidity for Sleeping
It’s important to know how to tweak your bedroom to create an ideal humidity level for sleeping. Here are some tips:
1. Choose the Appropriate Bedding
Did you know that the moisture levels in your bedroom are affected by the bed and the sheets you use? This is because your mattress occupies significant space, so the air quality in your bedroom is affected.
If you feel that the humidity level in your room is too high, try switching to cotton sheets and other bedding produced from natural materials. These will keep the air in your bedroom dry while you sleep and may be used to control the humidity.
2. Use Humidifiers, Dehumidifiers, and Air Purifiers
Investing in an air purifier, humidifier, or dehumidifier is a fast and easy solution to humidity problems.
Humidifiers work by evaporating moisture from the air. They may help reduce allergy symptoms and the risk of exposure to allergens, including mold, germs, and dust mites. On the other hand, dehumidifiers remove water from the air and lower humidity levels.
Air purifiers aren’t the same as humidifiers or dehumidifiers. The latter work by increasing or decreasing the relative humidity of the air, but they don’t directly get rid of air pollutants. Conversely, air purifiers work by filtering the air and removing contaminants, but they don’t directly affect the humidity in the room.
However, there are a variety of specialized air purifiers on the market that can humidify or remove moisture from a place, making them ideal if you feel you need all three functions.
3. Consider Introducing Plants
Plants provide more than aesthetic value to a place; they also play an essential role in controlling its relative humidity. Most plants provide moisture for the air, so if the air in your space is too dry, you may want to bring in some extra plants.
Also, if you have trouble with excess humidity in your room, try transferring some or all of your plants to cooler, drier locations elsewhere in your house or outdoors. Several of our favorite indoor plants for the bedroom are listed below:
- Golden Pothos
- Snake Plant
- English Ivy
- Peace Lily
4. Make Use of a Mattress Protector
If you’re a resident of a particularly humid region, your mattress, like your bedding, may get damp and uncomfortable. Using a mattress protector made of a material that doesn’t absorb water can prevent your mattress from becoming another source of humidity problems.
Get the most out of it by using it as soon as possible. Also, before putting a mattress cover on a mattress that has been lying in a humid area for a long time, you should dry it out using a dehumidifier to prevent the trapping of moisture and the subsequent development of mold.
5. Consider Wicking Pajamas
The use of wicking pajamas is another option for maintaining a good night’s sleep. A night’s sweat may be remedied by wearing wicking pajamas made from high-performance materials that dry the skin and absorb moisture, allowing you to get a better night’s rest.
Anyone experiencing hot flashes might benefit from their use.
6. Make Heating and Cooling Adjustments
The humidity in your house may be controlled by using your heating and cooling systems. These systems may be adjusted accordingly to raise or lower the humidity levels of your bedroom.
In addition, these levels need to be kept in check with regular maintenance. To get the most out of your HVAC system, you should regularly clean or replace the filters.
7. Replace Your Memory Foam Mattress
Sleeping on a memory foam mattress has several advantages, including superior stress alleviation and movement isolation. However, compared to other bed types, the softer cushioning layers of memory foam mattresses tend to absorb and retain more temperature on the surface, leading to an uncomfortable level of surface warmth.
This soreness might be worsened by humid weather. Some people sleep cooler than others because their bedding is made of more porous materials.
So, in humid environments, it’s ideal to use mattresses made from latex with open-cell foam and moisture-wicking coverings. You also use innerspring and hybrid mattresses with open-coil systems that allow air to circulate freely throughout the mattress structure.
8. Determine the Best Speed for Your Air Conditioner
A working air conditioner may be a lifesaver during hot and humid seasons. Still, it’d be best if you reduced the temperature to a more reasonable level rather than putting it on full throttle.
Moderate air conditioning airflow has been shown to improve sleep quality and duration.
Conversely, the increased speed (cooler air) might make it difficult to fall asleep and elevate your pulse rate.
9. Open Several Windows
Moisture may build up in your house from normal daily activities like showering and cooking. If the humidity level in your area is low, you should open the windows to let moisture out.
10. Check for Leaks
Extra dampness indoors is sometimes the result of dripping fixtures, especially in older buildings. So you should keep an eye out for water stains, as these may point to a problem with your plumbing.
11. Purchase an Electric Blanket
An electric blanket is an excellent way to stay warm during the winter. Invest in a porous one to ensure a restful night’s sleep despite the chill of winter. You won’t need to keep the thermostat on a high setting if you have a good electric blanket, which will keep the room from becoming overly hot and humid.
Suggestions for a More Restful Night’s Sleep
Besides our tips on air quality, these will allow you to relax and sleep well:
- There should be a complete absence of light; you shouldn’t be able to see across the room
- Use double glazing, earphones, and rugs to achieve noise reduction
- Keep items neat and orderly; a cluttered bedroom is no place to rest
Applying the tips covered in this guide will help you create a relaxing environment in your bedroom for restful activities and sleep. The quality of your sleep, like your nutrition and fitness, greatly influences your overall health.
Humidity plays a significant role in how well you enjoy your nighttime. Both high and low humidity may disrupt your sleep, so it’s essential to keep these two conditions under control.
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