Considering we spend about 1/3 of our entire lives sleeping, we really should be thinking about optimizing that time in whatever way possible. Getting good quality sleep consistently is vital to our overall health and well being, and yet insufficient sleep is a significant problem in the US and in many other countries.

There are many things you can try to improve your sleep quality, one of which is sleeping with a humidifier. You may know someone who sleeps with a humidifier – but what does a humidifier do for your sleep, anyways?

 

Humidifier Basics

What is a humidifier, anyways? Basically, it’s a small tabletop machine that heats water to produce steam, and releases that evaporated moisture into the air. Good humidifiers will allow you to set a specific humidity goal, while more basic ones will simply have a basic on/off function.

There are several reasons why you’d want to increase the humidity in your house. Perhaps you live in a dry desert area where the air is consistently dry. Perhaps you’ve noticed that your skin is drying out at night. Or, perhaps you simply find it more comfortable to breath in slightly more moist air.

 

What Does a Humidifier Do for Your Sleep?

 

sleeping with a humidifier

Sleeping with a humidifier can have many benefits. By adding moisture to the air you breath while sleeping, humidifiers can help you improve your nightly sleep quality and wake up feeling fresh. Some humidifier sleep benefits include:

  • Reduces congestion
  • Reduces dryness and irritation
  • Helps keep your skin from drying out
  • Helps reduce allergies
  • Helps reduce the risk of catching a cold
  • May help to reduce snoring
  • Prevents sore throat
  • Improves overall sleep quality

All of these humidifier sleep benefits relate the a humidifier simple ability to add moisture to the air. One “bonus” benefit is that they can also make the air feel warmer in your room, due to humidity’s tendency to trap heat in the air. This can help sleeping in a cold room in the dead of winter more comfortable, and can also help save you some money on your heating bill!

 

Does a Humidifier Help with Snoring?

A very common question that we get from readers is “how do I stop snoring?” While there is no easy answer, it COULD be that your snoring is caused – at least in part – by dry air. If that is the case, sleeping with a humidifier could help reduce your snoring, but it’s unlikely to be a cure-all.

 

Does a Humidifier Help with Sleep Apnea?

Most people who have sleep apnea will use a CPAP machine, and most CPAP machines have built-in humidifiers. If you’re seeking info about a humidifier for sleep apnea, it’s best to look into CPAPs that include built-in humidifiers.

If you’re not sure if you have sleep apnea, but you have some of the symptoms (snoring, fatigue, etc.), we recommend speaking to your doctor as soon as possible.

 

Do you sleep with a humidifier? What does a humidifier do for YOUR sleep? Let us know in the comments!

 

Austin Meadows

Austin Meadows is a freelance writer, CPAP user, and self-proclaimed sleep enthusiast from the Seattle area. When he's not writing or researching about sleep science, you can find him snowboarding, cooking or traveling the world. Contact him at [email protected]

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