As winter approaches, it’s time to don your warm pyjamas and dig out the hot water bottle. But if you’re one of those people who curls up in bed not wanting to stretch your toes down to the cold bit at the bottom, then it’s time to add another item to your sleeping arsenal.
A warm pair of socks.
Wearing socks to bed isn’t exactly an aphrodisiac but it may be the one thing standing between you and a good night’s sleep. Read on to find out why.
Why Cold Feet Can Stop You Sleeping
Have you ever noticed that you struggle to drop off when your feet are cold?
Well, there’s a physiological reason for that. When your feet are cold, your blood vessels constrict. Warming your feet up causes these blood vessels to dilate and this sends a signal to the brain that it’s time to go to sleep.
Having cold feet is also psychologically distracting. If you struggle to get to sleep because a million thoughts are flying around inside your head, removing the annoyance of your cold feet could help soothe your mind to sleep.
How To Warm Up Your Feet
1) An Electric Blanket
Electric blankets are great for warming up your bed, but if you suffer from cold toes, you may find that the rest of your body gets too hot before your feet warm up.
2) A Hot Water Bottle Or Heating Pad
If your feet get much colder than the rest of your body, a hot water bottle, rice or flaxseed heat pack or electric heating pad can help warm them up.
Make sure when you’re filling the hot water bottle or warming up your heat pack that it doesn’t get too hot. If you have an electric heating pad, you may want to turn it off when you get into bed so you don’t accidentally burn your feet during the night.
3) Use Extra Blankets
Laying extra blankets over the bottom part of the bed can help warm your legs up without overheating the rest of your body.
4) Warming Feet On Your Partner
Admit it, how many times have you tried to get away with snuggling your cold feet in between your partner’s thighs?
There’s no greater demonstration of love than warming someone’s cold feet, but if you’re using your partner as a hot water bottle night after night, your relationship may start to suffer!
5) Sleeping With Socks On
We think that wearing socks to bed is a safe, easy way of keeping your feet toasty all night long.
But not everyone agrees…
Is It Bad To Sleep With Socks On?
There’s definitely a bit of a stigma around wearing socks in bed. Not only is it considered very unsexy, but many people feel it’s unhygienic.
You may agree that it’s bad to wear socks all the time. After all, if your feet have been stuffed into tights or socks all day, don’t they need some time to breathe?
Sure, if you go to bed in the same socks you’ve been sweating in all day, then your feet might be a bit icky. But if you wash your feet before bed, dry them thoroughly then pop on a clean pair of socks, you shouldn’t have any hygiene issues.
Benefits Of Wearing Socks To Bed
As well as keeping feet warm and helping you nod off, wearing socks to bed has some added benefits:
- If you suffer from cracked heels, pulling on some bed socks after moisturising your feet can help lock the moisture into your skin and prevent your feet drying out.
- Socks help your body regulate its temperature, helping to prevent hot flushes and night sweats.
- If you suffer from Raynaud’s, wearing socks can help relieve the symptoms by boosting blood circulation in your feet.
- It may not feel like it in winter, but if your feet get too hot this can be equally infuriating when you’re trying to get to sleep. If sticking your feet out of the bottom of the duvet doesn’t cut it, then you could try using cooling socks for sleeping. While you can buy socks with inbuilt cold gel pads, an easier way is simply to cool your socks in the fridge before bed.
Best Socks For Sleeping
One downside of sleeping with socks on can be waking up in the middle of the night with hot, sweaty feet.
To prevent this from happening, it’s best to choose socks made from natural fibres such as merino wool or cashmere. These will help feet breathe so they don’t overheat, plus they’re super soft and cosy. Wool is great for bedding purposes in general. Read more about the benefits of wool here.
It’s also worth considering how tight your bed socks are. While you don’t want them to be slipping off your feet, if they’re too tight they may become uncomfortable. Plus, if your feet tend to warm up during the night, you want a pair of socks you can shuck off while half asleep.
Although you may think wearing compression socks may boost your circulation, it’s not a good idea to wear them to bed unless your doctor has specifically suggested you do so. Compression socks aren’t designed to be used when you’re lying down and may constrict blood flow.
To make your bed socks extra toasty, warm them on the radiator before bed. Not got the heating on? Try using a hairdryer or sitting on them instead.
Sleeping With Socks On – Is It For You?
Wearing socks to bed can have several benefits, but it’s very much a personal choice. Not everyone likes the feel of having something around the tootsies while they sleep. But if you do suffer from cold feet and have been worrying about whether it’s bad to sleep with socks on, hopefully, we’ve laid your mind to rest.
And for those of you who might be worried that socks in bed might be a turnoff, here’s some good news: a study by the University of Groningen found that bed socks can improve your sex life.
So, is it bad to wear socks all the time, even to bed? The answer is no; grab your woolly socks and curl up for a good night’s sleep – however cold it is outside.