When it comes to sleeping naked, there are a few safety measures and hygiene factors that should be followed by everyone. Photo Courtesy: iStock
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Sleeping naked is not just a personal choice, but actually a promoter of good health. Although some may shy away, even in solitude, others eagerly embrace the opportunity.
Aniruddha Gangar (24) (name changed for privacy reasons) a Goregaon resident and photographer by profession calls the experience of sleeping naked âheavenly'. "The kind of sound sleep I get when sleeping naked is incomparable. It's the best way to relax, especially after a stressful day at work."
Gangar, originally from Goa, recently shifted to Mumbai and stays with one of his relatives. He shares that due to space constraints and lack of privacy in a city like Mumbai, he waits to be left alone at home for days. Although Gangar loves to sleep naked when alone, he adds, "I usually prefer to sleep without any clothes on during summers, but I try to avoid doing the same during monsoons and especially winters." He says it makes him more vulnerable to catching cold.
For Borivali resident Reema Gunjal (26) (name changed for privacy reasons), a user experience designer, sleeping naked is a new experience. Although she admits to it being relaxing, one that she would like to do quite often, she says, "It is still a bit embarrassing, being a woman, even if I am alone in the room." "Feeling shy is so deeply ingrained in women" adds Gunjal, "that most of the time I wake up in the middle of the night only to put my clothes on and go back to sleep." Speaking about the positive impacts, Gunjal says, "On nights that I sleep naked, I wake up feeling rested and fresh the other day."
Feeling relaxed is not the only health benefit sleeping naked offers. Mid-day Online spoke to Dr Surabhi Siddhartha, consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist, Motherhood Hospital, Kharghar, to explore the various health benefits of this practice.
Sexual and reproductive health
Sleeping naked is beneficial for sexual as well as reproductive health. It enables the body to breathe freely, preventing excessive sweating and creating a more comfortable sleeping environment.
In terms of sexual health, cooler temperatures near the genital area can improve sperm production in men and allow to maintain proper vaginal pH in women. Sleeping naked can contribute to an improved self-image and body acceptance. By embracing our natural state without constraints or coverings, one can get more comfortable with their body and less self-conscious, thereby boosting self-esteem.
Benefits for women and men
Sleeping naked allows the body to manage its temperature. Women often experience fluctuations in body temperature throughout their menstrual cycles. During this time, sleeping without clothing can help maintain an optimal temperature by promoting air circulation. Additionally, sleeping naked can also improve vaginal health. Wearing tight underwear or pyjamas can lead to a warm and moist environment, which may lead to the overgrowth of bacteria or yeast infections. By allowing the genitals to breathe freely during sleep, women can cut down the risk of such vaginal infections.
Speaking on the health benefits of sleeping naked for men, Siddhartha adds that a significant number of men prefer sleeping naked due to the feeling of freedom that comes from shedding clothing before hitting the sheets. By sleeping in their natural state, without any fabric constraints, men feel more connected to their bodies and enter a total state of comfort which can ultimately lead to better sleep quality. Moreover, sleeping naked allows for improved air circulation around the body, keeping temperatures cooler throughout the night.
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Added benefits for couples
Sleeping skin-to-skin enhances intimacy and strengthens the emotional bond between partners. The physical contact that comes with being naked in bed releases oxytocin, often referred to as the love hormone, which promotes feelings of closeness and trust. This intimate connection can help couples feel more connected during sleep, leading to overall improved relationship satisfaction.
When we sleep, our body temperature naturally decreases to promote restfulness. Wearing pyjamas can disrupt this process by trapping heat in our bodies and causing discomfort or even night sweats. Sleeping naked ensures that neither partner is overheated or restricted, resulting in more peaceful nights of slumber. Further, Siddhartha says, "Sleeping naked in the same bed can lead to couples embracing their own bodies as well as their partner's without any kind of judgment or inhibition."
Tips to get comfortable sleeping naked
Although majority of men do feel comfortable sleeping naked, most women don't. According to Siddhartha, for most women in India, young too, it is hard to sleep naked even when alone due to societal constraints and cultural norms. "Women thus avoid sleeping without clothes altogether."
If you wish to sleep naked but are too shy to do so, Siddhartha suggests some easy tips
1. Use blinds or curtains that provide complete darkness. This will help reduce any apprehension about potential observers.
2. Invest in high-quality bedding made from breathable materials like cotton or bamboo to enhance comfort while staying cool throughout the night.
3. Remember that your personal comfort should take precedence over societal expectations.
For those who just can't get themselves to sleep naked, Siddhartha says, "It is totally okay." She also suggests a few alternatives that can offer similar benefits that sleeping naked does.
1. Opt for loose-fitting and breathable materials that allow for air circulation. Natural fabrics like cotton are ideal choices as they provide a comfortable temperature throughout the night.
2. Avoid tight elastic bands or constrictive outfits. They help promote better blood flow, preventing discomfort or restless sleep. One can choose cotton pants or t-shirts, co-ords, nightwear or gowns.
3. Use fabrics that are skin-friendly. Remember, finding appropriate clothing for sleep is all about personal comfort and preference.
4. Keep in mind that the goal is to create an environment conducive to relaxation that helps to get a sound sleep at night.
When it comes to sleeping naked, there are a few safety measures and hygiene factors that should be followed by everyone. It is important to ensure that the room temperature is conducive to sleeping without clothes. The body needs to stay within a certain temperature range for optimal sleep. If it's too cold or too hot, this can disrupt your rest.
One must also maintain complete cleanliness when it comes to bedding. Sleeping naked involves direct skin contact with your sheets and pillowcases, so it's crucial to keep them clean. Sweat and bacteria present on the fabric promote the growth of allergens and irritants that could cause discomfort or skin issues. Wash and change your bedding from time to time to prevent any dust allergies and rashes.