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Doctor explains why sleeping in the heat gives you 'unpleasant' nightmares

As if trying to fall asleep during a heatwave wasn't already hard enough, it turns out that warm weather could also have a strange effect on your dreams.

There is nothing better than a warm sunny day in summer. But there is nothing worse than a sultry summer evening, when it is so hot that you struggle to fall asleep. We were all in this situation, when we have to undress to underwear, remove the blankets and open all the windows. And now, it turns out that the heat can not only make us feel uncomfortable at night, but also can affect our dreams, or, more precisely, nightmares.

Dr Neil Stanley, former chairman of the British Sleep Society has revealed exactly how the heat increases our chances of having a nightmare.

"In order for us to get a good night's sleep, we need to lose around 1C of our internal body temperature, which sits around 36,6 °C. We typically lose that through our head or face, which pokes out of the duvet.If you're sleeping in a room which is too warm, your body's core temperature is unable to lose that heat and your sleep will be disturbed," told Dr Neil.

He added that if our sleep becomes so disturbed that we are sleep deprived, we will see greater 'sleep intensity', which leads to greater brain activity. This activity causes people to experience a phase of sleep called REM, making dreams more vivid and enabling us to remember them clearer.It can also cause dreams to become more unpleasant, leading to nightmares. Dr Stanley also noted that sleeping at the right temperature can help improve snoring and prevent other disorders, such as sleep apnea.