top of page

Embracing the Dark Days: How a lack of sunlight affects our sleep.

Updated: Jul 8

January has been DARK. Where we usually would have seen around 190 hours of sunlight so far this winter, we have only seen about 30. YUCK.

Wondering how the lack of sunlight could be affecting your families sleep? Keep reading.

The Winter Sleep Struggle: Understanding the Impact

1. The Circadian Rhythm

- Our bodies are finely tuned to the natural cycle of day and night. The reduced sunlight during the winter months can disrupt our circadian rhythm, making it challenging for both adults and children to maintain consistent sleep-wake patterns.

2. Melatonin Matters:

- Diminished sunlight exposure affects melatonin production, the hormone responsible for signaling to our bodies that it's time to wind down and prepare for sleep. With fewer daylight hours, melatonin levels may fluctuate, potentially causing difficulties falling asleep.

3. Energy and Mood Shifts:

- Limited exposure to natural light can contribute to feelings of lethargy and changes in mood. Adults may find it harder to muster the energy for a productive day, while children might experience shifts in their daytime alertness.

Tips for Synchronizing Sleep with Winter Days

1. Maximize Morning Light Exposure:

- Kickstart your day with a burst of natural light. If you have the option for a walk in the morning, open curtains wide, or enjoy breakfast by a sunlit window. This helps set your circadian rhythm for the day.

2. Create a Cozy Sleep Environment:

- Make your sleep the best it can be! Black out curtains to block out any neighbouring lights, a sound machine to block out any environmental noise. An ideal sleep temperature for kiddos is about 65-70 and 60-72 for adults. Invest in some cozy bedding, you deserve it.

3. Stay Active Indoors:

- With the extreme cold temps we have been having, it's important to find somewhere to be active. Reach out to your local community centres and find some open gym times. Or try your local mall for some running around space! I've always been able to find a quite part of the mall to let my kids run around!

4. Maintain a Consistent Sleep Routine:

- Stick to a regular sleep schedule for both adults and children. Consistency helps reinforce the body's internal clock, making it easier to transition between wakefulness and sleep.

Embracing the Dark Days with Intention

Rather than viewing the dark days of January as a hurdle to overcome, consider them an opportunity for cozy nights, reflective moments, and quality family time. By understanding the impact of reduced sunlight on sleep and taking intentional steps to mitigate its effects, we can navigate this season with grace and restfulness.

As always, individual experiences may vary, and if you find persistent sleep challenges, don't hesitate to reach out. Wishing you and your family peaceful nights and energized mornings throughout the winter season.

I'll leave you with 1 final thought.


Stay Cozy

xo Erin

4 views0 comments
bottom of page