Does a full moon affect our sleep?

This year Halloween falls on a full moon. A full moon occurs when the moon appears fully illuminated from our perspective on Earth. Other than a spectacular sight in the sky, there’s plenty of interesting facts and folklore out there around what happens on nights with a full moon. There’s one question that’s got our attention; does a full moon affect our sleep?

Research by the University of Basel in Switzerland found that a full moon can disturb a good night’s sleep. Sleep data from 33 volunteers over a 3 and a half year period found that on nights around the full moon, volunteers took longer to fall asleep, spent less time in deep sleep, reported having poorer sleep, and had reduced levels of the hormone melatonin. The volunteers also slept for an average of 20 minutes less than normal. That doesn’t seem like much, but add it up over a year and that’s a lot of lost zzzs.

But why exactly would a full moon change how we snooze? There’s not a clear answer. A seemingly obvious explanation would be that the moonlight brightens our bedrooms and makes it more difficult to sleep. However this condition was accounted for in the Switzerland study where volunteers slept in a controlled, darkened room. Psychologists have also attempted to understand how moon cycles impact our sleep cycles. Dr Stephanie Ashraf, sleep medicine specialist in Fishers, Indiana, told that myths and folklore surrounding full moons might be a key reason why sleep patterns are disrupted.

“Sleep is highly affected by what we expect to happen. We see this with placebo sleep medications, where a patient will fall asleep if they’re told the placebo will help them,” she says. “If someone expects not to sleep well because they know there is a full moon, they won’t sleep as well.”

Recall bias could also come into play. “The folklore around the moon makes everyone expect sleep changes,” Ashraf says. “We look for those changes and remember them and say ‘it must be a full moon, no wonder everyone is acting out today.’”

Some researchers have attempted to replicate the findings from the University of Basel and have found no correlation between a full moon and poor sleep. Many mysterious things are said to happen around a full moon, and it seems like to what extent our sleep is affected by a full moon, and why, also remains a mystery for now. What we do know for certain are the following tips on how you can sleep soundly every night, full moon or no full moon:

  1. Don’t be afraid of the dark, even on Halloween. Darkness is essential for good quality sleep. Use a sleep mask if you don’t have blackout blinds or curtains to make sure disturbing light, especially moonlight, can’t impact your sleep
  2. Invest in your rest. There are plenty of sleep accessories out there that will help you drift off into a deep sleep night after night. Weighted blankets can do just that, whilst also easing stress and anxiety and helping restless legs. View our weighted blanket
  3. It’s all about your sleep space; specifically, your bed. A good night’s sleep is near impossible on an uncomfortable mattress. Upgrade your mattress and bedding to ensure you’re getting the comfort and support you need for a great night’s sleep. View our range of mattresses


Recommended products

FREE UK delivery available

FREE UK delivery on orders over £49

Mattresses and divans delivery service

  • FREE UK delivery to a room of your choice
  • Professional 2-man delivery service

When do we deliver?

We deliver most items between Monday to Friday, 9am-6pm.

How much is delivery for orders under £49?

Orders of or under £49 will come with a £2.50 delivery charge.

Find out more about our delivery service here

60 night comfort exchange

Our comfort exchange gives you 60 nights to get really comfortable before making a decision. If you're still not loving your new mattress within 60 nights from delivery, you can exchange it for another mattress. It's as simple as that.

Here's how it works:

  1. Pick your new mattress on the official Silentnight website
  2. Sleep on it for at least 28 nights as it can take a little time to adjust to a new mattress
  3. If you're not happy after the initial 28 nights you can exchange it for a new mattress, as long as you claim within 60 nights of delivery

Read more about the 60 night comfort exchange

Total Quality Assurance

Before it gets to you your bed has been through a lot

  • All our mattresses, upholstered bases and headboards are made in the UK
  • All of our product meet European standards and exceed British standards
  • All our Upholstered beds and mattresses ordered through Shop.Silentnight are made to order
  • This means they are not stored for prolonged periods of time and are shipped to you direct from our factory.


  • Accredited onsite laboratory to bring the best products to you
  • Every Silentnight mattress type is tested to ensure it exceeds all British standards
  • Silentnight products are fully certified by the Forest Stewardship Council®(FSC®) FSC-C104461
  • We are full members of the Furniture Industry Sustainability Program.
Superbrands The Sleep Council nbf approved