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05 September 2007

Are you really not supposed to sleep with a fan directly on you? [More:]...because I do that. It's been damn hot in San Diego lately.
Sounds like an old wives' tale.

Worst consequence I can imagine would be some mild dehydration.
posted by Miko 05 September | 20:54
Pffft. That's right, pffft. I sleep with two fans blowing on me, and look at me.

So there you go.
posted by mudpuppie 05 September | 20:55
I do that too. I've heard not to have an air conditioner blow directly on you, but never have heard anything about fans. It feels so good.
posted by iconomy 05 September | 20:55
I used to do it when I lived in Sacramento, and I lived to tell the tale. The only reason I don't do it now is that the sound bugs Science Girl.
posted by bmarkey 05 September | 20:55
I've never buckled under to get AC just because a fan + a judicously applied damp cool washcloth seems to do the trick.
posted by Miko 05 September | 20:58
What the eff? I've never heard of this...I've done it many times. I guess if you're in a dusty house it will keep the dust airborne and then you will suck it into your lungs maybe? Who told you this?
posted by SassHat 05 September | 21:10

I grew up with a fan blowing full bore on me in the vietnam southern Ohio summer heat, and despite evidence to the contrary, there's really nothing wrong with me.

::searches on snopes::

dammit. my search-fu is busted. anyhow I doubt it's anything to be concerned with, especially in uber-hot weather.
posted by lonefrontranger 05 September | 21:15
My ceiling fan is installed directly above my bed. Same as when I was a kid. Seems fine to me.
posted by mullacc 05 September | 21:17
That Leonard Cohen tribute album, I'm Your Fan? It's pretty good.
posted by box 05 September | 21:27
Holy cow, this is a hilarious search. The Yahoo Answers page blames "dirt particles," while Wikipedia offers this insight into Korean Fan Death. You could be next.

Cecil Adams says not to worry, and he's all I need. Unless you're a superstitous hypochondriac, I think you're safe.
posted by Miko 05 September | 21:34
Is it too late to post the video for Fantastic Voyage?
posted by bmarkey 05 September | 21:36
Sleeping with the fan on you?!? That can't possibly be comfortable- I mean with that big electric motor and all, those things are heavy!
posted by Doohickie 05 September | 21:37
If you sleep with a fan on you be sure to practice safe sex.
posted by arse_hat 05 September | 22:04
Mick Jagger slept with a lot of fans on him, and he's still alive.
posted by Miko 05 September | 22:16
I'll sleep with one blowing on my lower body- if it blows on my head, my hair blows around and it keeps me awake.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero 05 September | 22:36
I do it because the a/c is never on when it should be. It just dries out my sinuses, maybe some mild dehydration. Nothing to get worried about.
posted by kyleg 05 September | 23:19
The blowing fan somehow creates a vacuum around your face area, which prevents you from breathing correctly. The result is death.

This is also interesting. I don't think skydivers or people who stick their head out the wind of a moving car ever died.

Except for the ones that got hit by an oncomming school bus!!!! "YOU COULD BE NEXT!"

posted by edgeways 05 September | 23:26
I've been know to sleep with a fan going and have remarkably lived to tell the tale.

It seems to me that if a fan is blowing enough to cause breathing difficulties or whatever, then odds are pretty good the thing would be too loud for me to fall asleep.
posted by jjb 05 September | 23:42
My great-grandmother would sleep with a fan on her, but she refused to sleep in moonlight if it happened to be coming in through the window at night. And she never explained why.
posted by WolfDaddy 05 September | 23:46
I sleep with a/c going straight on my head. Never hurt me yet.
posted by gaspode 05 September | 23:56
Hee, miko!
posted by brujita 06 September | 00:03
My mom's been complaining about the heat in SD all week. I guess it's just horrible, huh? :(

By the way, I'm typing this with a ceiling fan blowing directly on me. So far no side effects.
posted by miss lynnster 06 September | 01:54
You are in danger of sleeping comfortably if you do this. A fan on low, pointed at my face and upper body is bliss on a hot night.
posted by tomble 06 September | 01:54
omg, you should hear the Greeks on this subject. They are absolutely convinced that this will do horrible, horrible things to you. (Among other beliefs: your muscles will contort and "freeze" that way. forever.) And it's not just sleeping with a fan (why, hello, Mick!), but just having a fan blowing on you at all, ever. Or an open window that creates a draught... I won't go into it at all because I could write a small book on this subject, but I'm not exaggerating even a little bit when I say that during the hottest summer months I won't go to most friends' houses because they refuse to use either fans or air conditioners. I think the Italians have this same anti-fan thing.

My husband, thank dog, doesn't share this superstition.
posted by taz 06 September | 03:05
I've heard from a couple of different places that the French also have this anti-draught mindset. I'm really not sure how it would get started, and it would seem to make living conditions in hot weather very unpleasant.
posted by deadcowdan 06 September | 09:07
What's with that, taz? It's so weird to hear medical doctors and other scientists in places like Korea and Greece advocate such obviously wrong thinking. Thousands of people all over the world sleep with fans on. I sleep with my air conditioner on every night. Surely any physiologist can attest that heat stroke is a much more serious concern than "fan death".

(although I suspect that european's fear of fresh air comes from a very old plague mentality. Fresh air == bad nasties).
posted by muddgirl 06 September | 09:14
I think it dates to before modern medicine, when catching a cold could be a death sentence.
posted by me3dia 06 September | 11:17
The mister and I have a fan blowing on us every night. We sleep with the door closed to keep the younger cats out 'cause with them in the room, there'd be no sleep. Once they settle down they'll be allowed in, but until then that fan's a blowin'!
posted by deborah 06 September | 14:39
"The House Wine of the South," || Boy, howdy could I use some managment advice.