Plenty of people sleep with various noise-making machines throughout the night to help them sleep better – sound machines, music, white noise, fans, etc. Some people find that these noises lull them to sleep. But do they really help, or are they more detrimental to your sleep?
There is no clear answer: it depends entirely on the person. For some people, having a light bit of noise aids their sleep, but for others, it can keep them up all night. Here are some pros and cons to sleeping with a bedroom fan on.
How to Sleep with a Fan On
People enjoy sleeping with a fan on for two main reasons: the white noise and the cooling effects. Fans will create a low humming sound that can lull people to sleep. The noise of the fan can drown out other background noises and keep the noise in the bedroom standard. This helps so that sudden car alarms or ambulance sirens outside won’t wake you.
If you run hot while you sleep, fans also are a cheap alternative to air conditioning to keep the room cooler. Keeping your sleep area at a cooler temperature is generally thought of as an ideal sleep climate. The fan works to keep the room cool so you can avoid keeping the air conditioning on all night.
If your bedroom fan is too noisy but you appreciate the added cooling benefits, try sleeping with ear plugs to block out the noise. Having the fan run constantly is also good for air circulation, which helps avoid mildew buildup or bad smells.
Is Sleeping with a Fan On Bad for You?
Sleeping with the fan on is not for everyone. For people with weaker immune systems, those who are prone to asthma or dry eye, and those who are cold-natured, sleeping with the fan on can cause more harm than good. Fans can dry eyes out even if your eyes are closed while sleeping, but this can be remedied by wearing an eye mask. The constant flow of colder air can agitate asthma symptoms as well. Being colder than you like can affect your immune system, even leading you to potentially get sick.
Some fans can create a good bit of noise throughout the night. If you’re such a light sleeper that the slightest bit of noise bothers you, and you don’t want to be impeded by ear plugs, then a fan running throughout the night will likely do you more harm than good.
There is no cut-and-dry answer as to whether or not sleeping with a fan is inherently good or bad: it is entirely up to you. While there are clear benefits to sleeping with a fan on, this doesn’t necessarily mean it’s right for everyone. If you’re someone who appreciates noise and feeling cold while you sleep, having the fan on is probably for you. However, if you’re a light sleeper, if you find yourself always freezing, or have health issues such as asthma or dry-eye, sleeping with the fan on might do more harm than good.