As the days get colder, you may be cranking up the heater at night so you don’t have to crawl into icy sheets. If you’re having a hard time coping with falling asleep in the cold, you may need to take a lesson from hibernating bears and discover how much rest you can get during the winter months. Believe it or not, the cooler autumn and winter months can be some of the best times to get excellent sleep. Check out the four tips below for optimizing your sleep despite the cold winds whipping around outside your house.

Knock Down the Temperature

Perhaps you have found that when you turn up your air conditioning system in the summer, you sleep better at night. Much the same is true during the winter months as well. Rather than cranking up the heat, set the thermostat on your heating system somewhere between 60 and 68 degrees, and you will find that you will sleep more soundly. If your system isn’t functioning very well, make sure to contact a company like C B Lucas Heating & Air Conditioning for a tune-up. Feel free to pile on the blankets, but studies show that sleeping in a room with cooler air helps your body fall asleep more easily. Not to mention that you’ll also save money on your heating bills!

Keep the Bed Warm

While the cool air entering your lungs can help you sleep better, you will still want to keep your body warm enough to sleep soundly. Invest in a couple sets of flannel sheets that are soft on your skin and hold in your body heat. A down comforter is another natural material that keeps heat close to your body without letting you get overheated. You can also warm up a rice bag in the microwave for a minute or so and put it under the covers near your feet about 10 minutes before you go to bed. This will spread a bit of heat between the sheets so it’s easier to slip in at bedtime.

Use an Actual Nightcap

No, alcohol won’t help. Purchase an actual nightcap to wear on your head. Body heat is lost through your head at night because it is typically the body part that is not covered. Much like newborn babies in the hospital wear tiny caps, a soft hat made of natural fibers will keep your body heat well regulated. In the same vein, consider wearing socks to bed during the winter as well, especially if you are someone who likes to kick your feet out from under the covers.

Increase Humidity

Investing in a cheap cool-air humidifier can be a great way to save additional money on heating costs. During the winter, air becomes drier, which can make the air in your home feel even cooler than it is. Air that is moist feels warmer. Plus, it can help you avoid a sore throat and a cough in the morning.

While keeping your bedroom too cold may make you wake up shivering, finding that perfect cool temperature in your bedroom can drop your core temperature and work with your natural circadian rhythm. This can create fantastic sleeping conditions and lead to well-rested mornings. Moreover, you can save money by using these tips as you find that you do not have to crank up your heating system as much as you once did.