Is it bad to sleep with a fan blowing on you? That can be a contentious question, depending on who you ask. There are quite a few proponents for the good , and the bad issues of sleeping with the fan on you. But you might find that the answer is not that clear cut.
Some people say it is unhealthy, other people don’t have a problem with it.
And the truth is, both are right. There are times when sleeping at the fan on you is exactly what you need to cool off and get some sleep,
But there is also times when having air blowing directly on you can cause you to have some issues in other areas.
So let’s do our best to break it down and see how if we can come to some agreement on the subject.
Table of Contents
Benefits of sleeping with a fan
1. Cools you down
2. White noise
3. Circulate the air
4. Reduce hot and cold spots in your home.
5. Reduces odors
1. Cool you down.
When it is hot, especially hot and sticky like it gets in the south at night where I live, putting a fan on you is the difference between going to sleep or not.
There’s not too many things more miserable than trying to get to sleep in a hot room with no airflow.
Taking a shower helps but that’s not always an option especially when you’re not in your own house, not to mention those nights when you can wash the sweat off and be sweaty again in 20 minutes.
2. Sleeping with a fan for noise
The sound of a fan humming can be a good thing to help drown out other loud sounds that can keep you from getting to sleep good.
Whether it’s the person in the room with you snoring, or the TV on and the other room, for the traffic outside,
Erratic sounds while you are sleeping can jar you awake and make it harder to get back to sleep after you’ve been startled.
A fan can make an excellent white noise machine when you don’t have any other source of white noise around.
Of course there is a million videos of rain sounds, ocean sounds, or whatever sounds you need to help you sleep available on YouTube if you have your phone.
3. Circulates the air
If you’re having a hard time getting to sleep, laying in a dry stale room with no air flowing doesn’t help.
Opening the window is a good choice to get some air flowing in the room when you have a window to open.
But opening a window is not always an option because of security risk or the exasperation of noise outside that we already mentioned.
Running a fan while you’re asleep is a good way to create some airflow in a less than fresh environment.
4. Supplement the air conditioning
a. Uneven air – hot and cold spots
Even when you have central heat and air that distributes air conditioning into every single room, you can have hotspots where the vented incoming air does not get to as well.
One option is to keep the “on” setting on your AC thermostat left in the ” on ” position so that the AC fan continues to run after the AC has powered down.
But this will still leave some spots where the air does not get to as well and cost more money to operate.
And keeping the fan running continuously evaporates the condensation and blows it back into the house in the form of humidity. Which only makes the air feel hotter and stickier.
Using a fan as a supplement to your air conditioning can help move the cool air from your AC vents through your room and onto yourself better.
b. Air conditioning is also expensive to keep running at cool setting all night. Most experts agree that you should turn your thermostat up as hot as you can actually take the heat, to avoid an outlandish Energy bill during the summer months.
5. Reduces odors
The bedroom can be a, let’s say “unfresh” room to sleep in.
Body odors, especially collective body odors when you sleep in the same room with someone else can build up and make a room unfresh and hard to get to sleep in.
Many people sleep in the same room with their baby to be able to conveniently change and nurse them through the night.
Though necessary, the smell of a dirty diaper can be enough to wake you up.
Having a fan in the bedroom can keep the air flowing and reduce smells.
Though you probably don’t want to keep the fan right on the baby. Babies tend to have a much more sensitive respiratory system that can be a lot more susceptible to airborne bacteria.
Side effects of sleeping with a fan on you
2. Body aches
3 Can cause congestion
4. Sore throat
5. Dry eyes
7. Ear pain
8. Allergies and asthma
There are a lot of good points to not sleeping with a fan on you. Do they outweigh the positive, you’ll have to decide.
Some people need absolute quiet to sleep. And though fan noise can be considered a source of white noise to help you sleep by some, for others, a fan is just too loud.
If you’re a person that thinks you would enjoy the benefits of sleeping with a fan but they are too loud, you should know that there are many fans available that are very very quiet these days.
2. Can sleeping under a fan cause body aches?
As strange as it may seem, sleeping with a fan with the air directed right on you can cause you to tense up and wake up with body aches. The flow of concentrated cool air on you can cause your muscles to constrict and leave you feeling stiff when you wake up.
Another issue is that it can become too cool while you’re asleep, and you will naturally turn away which may leave you in an uncomfortable position that will also leave you sore in the morning.
There’s also that period of time where the seasons are transitioning and one night you may need a fan on you where is the next night, it’s too much. There’s no benefit to keeping a fan on you when the temperature does not warrant it.
3. Does sleeping under a fan cause congestion?
Generally sleeping under a fan helps keep the air moving enough that you get a good night’s sleep.
But if you’re feeling sinusy or you can tell that you’ve got a cold coming on, sleeping directly in front of a fan will more than likely exasperate the problem.
And believe me, having a summer cold with a congested head and chest is even more miserable when you are burning up but sitting in front of the fan is only making you feel worse.
The fan may not be the reason you are congested but may not exactly make you feel better either.
Although the feeling of a light breeze coming off a cool mist humidifier fan can be refreshing and help you open up and breathe easier when you’re feeling congested.
4. Sleeping with fan on sore throat
Having a sore throat is related to dry mouth. If you already sleep with your mouth open, having a fan directly on you is going to dry out your throat which may leave it feeling sore.
Positioning the fan away from your face may help you to not get a dry sore throat but still be able to enjoy the benefits of a fan on you while you sleep.
Also, if you are already feeling like you might have a cold coming on, sleeping under a fan may give you the chills and make you feel worse rather than better.
A cool mist humidifier maybe a better option for giving you a slight breeze and adding moisture to the air to help loosen up mucus and moisten your throat so you can swallow easier.
5. can sleeping with a fan on cause dry eyes?
Dry eyes, itchy eyes, and watery eyes
can all get aggravated when you have a fan blowing on you.
Dry and itchy eyes are usually symptoms that are related to allergies.
And having a fan blow around airborne allergens, especially directly on you, could be the reason that you get dry eyes with the fan on.
This is an issue that I am close to.
My own mother carries around a box of tissues because her eyes are so sensitive to allergens that she never knows when just having a fan on is going to make her eyes water so bad she can’t take it.
6. The sleeping with the fan on dehydrate you?
Sweating dehydrates you. Humidity dehydrate you. Heat dehydrates you.
All the reasons why you put a fan on yourself in the first place.
Sleeping with the fan will not dehydrate you but it is not the solution for dehydration either.
If you have a fan on you because you were excessively hot, that should be an indication to you that you need to drink more water.
Staying hydrated will help you cool down more than sleeping with a fan.
But a cool drink and a fan are certainly bosom buddies in the summer.
7. Sleeping with a fan on bad for your ears?
There is an old wives tale or at least a rumor that sleeping under a fan will give you tinnitus.
But the truth is tinnitus is related to being exposed to loud noises or infections and there is really no evidence that having air blowing on you can give you tinnitus.
Though there are certain sleeping positions like your neck being kinked that can exasperate ear problems.
8. Asthma and allergies
Sleeping with a fan on can exasperate allergies and asthma because it keeps airborne triggers moving around through the air while you are sleeping.
Allergens like dust mites go hand in hand with heat and humidity.
When the weather is hot and sticky you can count on having a large population of dust mites in your room.
Unfortunately that is the time when you need to fill the comfort of a fan on you the most.
This is where running a dehumidifier will not only help reduce the allergen population, will reduce the humidity that is amplifying the heat and take the pressure off of your air conditioner all in one shot.
An air purifier in your bedroom is also an excellent device to keep as a companion to your fan so that you can enjoy the benefits of having the fan on without circulating allergens and asthma triggers it can cause you to have a reaction while you are sleeping.
Is it bad to sleep with the fan blowing on you?
Are you a proponent of sleeping with a fan on or do they have too many issues for you to be comfortable with.
It is certainly a subject that can be debatable but it is really up to you and there is no harm in trying it. And it can keep you from running to the thermostat.