Good sleep is important; the consequences of poor sleep can manifest in a range of negative physical, neurological and psychological effects on health. These include decline in cognition, a weakened immune system, increased risk of depression and poor physical health. One way to improve sleep quality is through a combination of sleepwear and bedding that promotes a stable microclimate in bed. Wool has natural and inherent properties that help create such an environment.
Research proves that wool helps maintain a more stable body temperature and control perspiration, creating a more comfortable sleep environment. In particular, wool has been shown to offer superior buffering of heat and moisture changes compared to other fibers. This enables wool to protect against low or high temperatures and high humidity, which are known to have a negative effect on sleep. The positive effects of sleeping with wool apply to people of all ages. However, because sleep quality and the ability to regulate body temperature decrease with age, wearing wool sleepwear and using wool bedding is especially recommended for the elderly.
A 2018 study showed that older adults who wear wool sleepwear fall asleep faster and experience less disturbed sleep compared to those who wear other fibers. This study showed that adults aged 65 and older took an average of 12 minutes to fall asleep, compared to 22 minutes when wearing polyester and 27 minutes when wearing cotton. While the benefits of wool sleepwear on sleep quality are most apparent in older adults, studies also show that these benefits also apply to younger adults.
A 2016 study that examined the effects of wool and cotton sleepwear on sleep quality at 17°C showed that men and women aged 19 to 27 fell asleep significantly faster when wearing wool compared to cotton.
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