A lot of people swear that they sleep better in the rain. I assume that what they mean is that it is raining outside, but that they are inside where it is dry. Trying to sleep outside in the rain might be a little too similar to Chinese water torture. Actually, my wife and I were camping a few years ago on the coast and a heavy rain storm came up unexpectedly during the night. The rain leaked through the top of our tent and dripped on my head, making sleep impossible. So, I speak with some authority when I say that sleeping while physically in the rain is of no benefit to you.
However, it is pretty well established, at least anecdotally, that when the rain is falling outside people find it easier to get to sleep inside. In fact, it doesn’t have to be rain. All kinds of ambient, “white noise” sounds can have a positive effect on sleep. I have heard numerous reports of electric fans, ocean waves, wind, the furnace, static on a radio, and of course rain being significant aids to sleep.
Benefits of White Noise
So-called “white noise” is beneficial in several ways.
- White noise tends to be soothing, helping you to relax
- It is a distraction that can prevent your mind from wandering to all sorts of things that keep people up at night
- The steady stream of sound provides a constant mask over other sounds that might otherwise startle us awake.
- Some kinds of white noise can have a hypnotic effect that lulls you to sleep