What is the optimal temperature to keep your home? And what are the health effects of being too cold?

·3-min read
What is the optimal temperature to keep your home? And what are the health effects of being too cold?

With heating bills rising, and set to rise even further, many are asking if reducing the temperature in our homes has any health implications.

Stephen Fitzpatrick, founder of Ovo Energy, said that people will go hungry and cold unless the Government acts swiftly, as millions of families are set to see their energy bills rocket from £1,971 to £3,549 in October.

From October 2022, energy bills are set to soar once more, with another hike in January 2023, as the result of Ofgem’s energy-price cap going up again and again.

And, according to research by Energy Helpline, keeping your radiators on for nine hours a day costs £10.80. Over the course of a week, that would amount to a huge £75.60 per week, and a whopping £335 per month.

The calculations also assume the central heating has been left on for nine hours, with one hour of heating costing up to £1.20.

So, what is the optimal temperature to keep your home at? Can reducing temperature that slight bit more to reduce costs impact your health? Here is everything you need to know.

What is the optimal temperature to keep your home?

It is beneficial to know the best temperature to keep your home, as having a room too hot or too cold could have implications for your health.

Conditions and illnesses linked to the cold range from blood-pressure increases and common colds, to heart attacks and pneumonia. Besides poor health, cold-related illness causes absence from work, social isolation, and sleep deprivation. It may lead to mental or stress-related illness, with negative knock-on effects for family and friends.

According to The Energy Saving Trust, you should heat your home to between 18 to 21 degrees Celsius during winter. And The World Health Organisation (WHO) suggests 18 degrees is the ideal temperature for healthy and well-dressed people. Both agree this is also the ideal temperature for sleeping.

It is also advised that you heat your home based on the age and health of your household. The WHO suggests 20 degrees as the ideal temperature for the old, young, or unwell. For healthy adults, you should heat your home to a room temperature that feels the most comfortable for you.

What is the ideal room temperature for babies and what are the health effects of being too cold?

It is vital that your baby’s room is not too hot or cold. The risk of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome) is higher for babies feeling too hot. The room of a newborn should be 16 to 20 degrees, according to lullabytrust.org.uk

How can I check if my baby is the correct temperature?

The best way to check your baby’s temperature is by putting your hand on the skin on their chest or the back of their neck. Their hands and feet will always feel cooler than the rest of their body, so it’s best not to use that as a guide.