Does a Full Moon Affect Your Sleep? Here’s What Science Says...
Many people report restless nights when there is a full moon. But is there any science to back this up? If the moon really can affect your sleep patterns, why might this be? And can we do anything about it?
Full moons have long served to explain all sorts of wackiness. From werewolves to bad moods, when that moon of ours is shining bright, it's easy to feel like some astral power is at work.
While a wolfman might not actually be prowling the woods under the lunar light, the moon does have a real impact on your body. And it seems that could be influencing how you sleep.
Swiss scientists discovered that our sleep patterns are linked to lunar cycles. That’s right, it’s really not just (moon) pie in the sky. According to the results of their study, we’re more likely to face a sleepless night when there is a full moon, taking longer to drop off and spending less time in deep sleep.
Lunar Sleep Is All About Timing
More work needs to be done to understand how on earth a full moon could be messing with our shut-eye. What we do know, though, is that the moon is part of a larger cosmic clock, moving to a sort of galactic metronome that keeps the planets aligned and spinning. Pretty cool, right?
This timepiece actually affects many things here on earth, controlling natural events like the tide and moving the seasons along. Our own bodies feel this pull too: we're all regulated by circadian rhythm, the internal timer that tells us when to sleep, when to wake up, and when to eat. Despite Netflix, group texts, and Uber, we're still very much part of the organic world.
Circadian rhythm is tightly linked to the 24-hour day, helping to explain why it's tough to get out of bed on cold, dark winter mornings, or why it's a struggle to sleep after staring at the blue light of our phone in bed. Ignoring the tick-tock of this biological clock can lead to pretty serious issues, from increased chance of heart disease to obesity.
Our internal circadian rhythm also helps us to make the most of our world, keeping us awake when the environment is ideal: light and warm. It's not hard to see how our bodies are closely linked to the specific conditions on our planet. So, it follows that we are affected by these in more ways than we can fully understand. In other words, it actually does make sense to synchronize to the beat of this natural clock and work in harmony with the world around us — including the moon.
Tuning Your Clock for Better Sleep
If you're feeling a little out of whack, it's okay. We can recalibrate with some simple lifestyle changes.
1. Get into the groove with a regular sleep schedule
Going to bed and waking up at a consistent time each day is important to get your body into a regular sleeping pattern. Set a bedtime alarm on your phone to give you a nudge in the evening and try to stick to the routine as much as possible. Sure, that Saturday lie-in can feel good but it might start to mess with your schedule if you’re snoozing till noon every weekend.
2. Time your workouts just right
Exercise keeps your body and mind pumping away, but when you work out can also affect your circadian rhythms. Get your heart rate up in the morning if you’re struggling to fully wake up, and hit the gym in the afternoon if you need a little pick me up for a long evening ahead. Just don’t exercise right before bedtime.
3. Get out!
Playing inside is fun, but nothing beats the health benefits and vitamin D of the great outdoors. Take a hike, ride a bike, or ditch the car and take a stroll on a quick errand down the street. Sunlight does wonders for keeping us tuned up. A little fresh air almost always helps.
4. Turn off those screens
Don’t fry your bedtime brain with blue light. While many devices now feature nighttime modes, shifting the screen color to a reddish cast, the science is young and there’s not a ton of data to back it up. Why not ditch your phone, tablet, or laptop in the evening altogether? Instead, read a book, magazine, or newspaper to help you on your way to the Land of Nod.
5. Go au naturale...
Of course, the right mattress can make a big difference in your quest for good sleep. We believe in taking our cue from nature, with organic mattresses made from quality materials that multitask effortlessly, in order to give you great sleep night after night. Natural latex and organic wool are both beautifully soft and breathable, while organic cotton covers are both super snuggly and durable, creating the perfect bedtime blend.
Whether or not that full moon is going to keep you tossing and turning all night, we do know that our bodies react to nature in a myriad of ways, from every 24-hour turn of the planet to every month-long lunar cycle. Sleeping in harmony with your circadian rhythms is about getting back to the basics, listening to your body - and connecting yourself to nature.
At Sleep365 we're all about sharing the wonderful benefits of good sleep, with mattresses and bedding that don't just feel great but are healthier for you and kinder to our planet. Take a look at our organic mattresses and organic bedding to find out more. Because what you sleep on and how it's made truly matters.