Each person’s circadian rhythm affects body temperature fluctuations throughout the day and night. According to the Sleep Foundation, a drop in body temperature usually precedes sleep. One quick, simple and easy trick can create the perfect environment for a good night’s sleep.
Evidence suggests that wearing socks can lower your core body temperature, making you fall asleep faster.
Women, in particular, have a “lower resting metabolic rate,” which affects their sensitivity to cooler sleeping environments.
How does wearing socks help you sleep?
Wearing socks helps distal vasodilation, which means more blood flows to the feet.
Therefore, as more blood flows toward the feet, the core body temperature begins to decrease.
Research published in the National Library of Medicine analyzed the effectiveness of bed socks on sleep quality.
The research team, from Seoul National University, recruited six men to study their sleep. Each man participated in two experimental conditions:
1. Wearing socks to bed to sleep.
2. Not wearing socks to bed to sleep.
An actigraphy was used on the wrist to record sleep quality through several measurements:
• Sleep efficiency.
• Total sleep time.
• Number of awakenings.
• Wake up after sleeping.
• Average duration of wakefulness.
• Movement indicator.
• Fragmentation index.
All measurements were taken over a period of seven hours while the participants slept in a room at a temperature of 23 degrees Celsius.
Heart rates and skin temperatures were also recorded, and participants were asked for their opinions on how well they slept.
When wearing socks to sleep, participants fell asleep 7.5 minutes faster than when not wearing socks.
Furthermore, the total sleep time for those wearing bed socks lasted 32 minutes longer.
People who wore socks to sleep experienced “7.5 times fewer” awakenings during the night. Sleep efficiency was “7.6% higher” for those wearing socks while sleeping.
Thus, the researchers concluded that wearing socks while sleeping “has positive effects on sleep quality.”
The researchers added: “These results indicate that sleep quality can be improved by manipulating foot temperature during sleep.”
The Sleep Foundation warned that older people may not experience the same sleep benefits by wearing socks to sleep.
The organization noted that “age may play an important role in the effectiveness of the effect of warming the feet on sleep.”
People who suffer from blood circulation problems or swollen feet prefer not to wear socks while sleeping.
It is also recommended to avoid compression socks when trying to sleep more easily.