HOW TO FALL ASLEEP FAST: ADVICES FROM OUR READERS

Some of our readers have shared their tips on how to fall asleep fast and we have selected the best ones:

.BEDROOM ATMOSPHERE.

Spraying a light mist of lavender around the room and on the sheets relaxes you, and helps you go to sleep. (Annaabelle)

We run a box fan in the hallway instead of spending so much money on white noise machines. (Robin)

Another way to fall asleep faster is to surround yourself with pillows and blankets. That was you feel more secure and more comfortable! (Emily)

I have a waterfall in my frog tank and a fan going all night and it actually helps me fall asleep. (Kaoru Hitachiin)

Sometimes when I need to fall asleep I turn my automatic fan on because the noise helps me sleep. (Bob)

I found i sleep better when my bedroom is cold -> it has also been proven that people usually sleep better when the ambient temperature (room temperature) is under 22 degrees Celsius(71.6 degrees Fahrenheit) and above 16 degrees Celsius(60.8 degrees Fahrenheit) in average. (Matt)

What also works is to have a clean room. When you have a messy room, you know you’re going to have to clean it up at one point or another plus if you’re still a kid, your parents might actually reward you for keeping your room all tidy. (Ina)

.BEFORE BED.

Every night I take a bath with lavender soap bubbles and have nice candles around it. I also get my dog and we play fun games while I’m in the tub. I also put on a funny movie so I can watch it while washing! I usually get weak and tired so I get out and wash my face and moisturize it. Then I put on pajamas and keep the movie running, get my dog and cuddle up! Works like wonders. (Kiana)

I have found that playing games on my smartphone that require you to think but not too much, make me fall asleep. Games lunged that included: Draw Something, Hanging With Friends, and Temple Run. (Andrew)

I can never get to sleep unless I have my hair dryer blowing warm air on my face. This is odd but it really works. My younger sister and older brother also do it, i don’t know if it just runs in the family but the noise is soothing and the warm breeze helps me relax. I always encourage my friends to do it, they find it a bit strange at first but then they understand why i do it. (Anon)

I like to rub cream on my feet and put on warm socks. My favorites are the hand knitted socked that fit my feet perfect without restricting my ankles, I think its important your feet are warm. But hey, some people prefer no socks especially if its a really hot…so pay attention to your feet like. (Janice)

Believe it or not horror movies total do the trick for me… go figure! (Greg)

I find insanely useful when trying to fall asleep is take a shower/bath and make sure to brush your hair, brush your teeth, etc. I find feeling super fresh and relaxed helps you fall asleep because it makes you feel relaxed, beautiful, happy, and feeling good. (Hibiki)

If you wear contact/eye lenses then take them off before you get to bed, I can’t sleep when I’m wearing those and actually I’m getting a little more sleepy when i’m taking them off. (Kent)

An useful trick is to get a dvd that you have seen hundreds of times and put it on whilst you’re trying to sleep (at low volume of course) and the voices will be familiar and help you drift off. (zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz)

Have a glass of water beside you. If you are thirsty at night, you’re most likely going to wake up because of a parched mouth. (Sophia)

Brush your teeth! Having a sour or bad taste in your mouth before sleeping will have a negative effect on your mind. (Sam)

I always find doing something really boring helps me to fall asleep, so I start studying for math or something and I’m out like a light. (Megan)

FOODIES GOODIES

It might help if you drink a glass of warm milk/water with 1/2 teaspoon of salt. (Mandi9151999)

Popcorn has natural chemicals that help you fall asleep. Non-buttered is the best because butter takes time to digest. Another thing that will make you instantly fall asleep is cherry juice. The natural chemicals found in cherries are really effective when trying to fall asleep. (Calvin)

Do not drink energy drinks( boost, red bull , powerrade etc), these are the major drinks that keep you up and active, the best way to get to sleep is to change into night wear, and fresh bed covers, this is for your comfort. (La la)

Eat a juicy cold fruit like an orange. It will make your body feel cool and relaxed, just what you need for a good night sleep. (Grace)

WHILE IN BED

Put yourself in the position to do a push-up while laying in bed, then push up and hold that position until your arms get so tired that you fall onto the pillow. You drain all the rest of your energy, and since you didn’t actually exercise in the process your body doesn’t administer any adrenaline, or not much. So you should be nice and tired, and should be able to fall asleep now. (Dark)

Sometimes when i fall asleep the best is when I wear warm clothes but stick my feet out so my body temp is just right. (Baby bee)

Don’t keep checking the time. If you have a clock in your room, place it somewhere that you cant see from your bed. (Serkan)

My mom said that when she can’t fall asleep she would stare at one thing for 20 minutes. I tried it it and sometimes works. (Jenny)

If you have problems getting comfortable before sleeping, a good thing to do is have enough support under your neck, not so much your entire head because that can cause a lot of strain on your neck and shoulders, and also under your back if you have a deep natural arch, like I do. It’ll be a lot easier to relax into sleep. If you like to sleep on your tummy keep that support under your neck and have a pillow under the arm that you’re facing. This keeps your body more in balance and you won’t wake up sore. (Shella)

My main problem is that i think about all my problems before bed. I find it best to clear my mind and think of the day ahead of me. (Cait)

The best thing to do to fall asleep is to lie down in a real comfortable position, close your eyes, and refuse to open them. Bratz

I like to listen to my surroundings and become absorbed in them. (Mandi9151999)

I remember my dad used to lay in bed with me at night and scratch my back and I fell right to sleep. So if you can try having somebody scratch your back, that would be great. It relaxes you:) (Zoe)

Hug a stuffed animal! Contrary to popular belief, you are never too old for a stuffed animal. Once I got one again as an adult, it was much easier to sleep. Look for one just the right size to hug under its arms and rest your chin on. That seems to be the perfect size. This is especially helpful if you live without pets, or if your pet just won’t cooperate.Just be aware that if you’re an allergy sufferer, clean your stuff sleeping companion regularly. Baby wipes work wonders to surface clean a plushie. (Miakoda)

When you are ready to go to sleep, flick your eyes quickly from side to side behind closed lids until you see flashes of light, then stare into the middle distance. (Moira)

I can never fall asleep unless I am IN the blankets. Even if it is too hot, I can’t stand not having that warmth surrounding me. – Galaxy

I just put on a pair of ear plugs so that I do not hear a thing anymore. Even if something is trying to disturb me, I won’t be disturbed. This has helped me to stay asleep during the night and because I don’t wake up in the middle of the night anymore, now I wake up feeling relaxed and great! (John)

Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth to help you relax. (Ashton)

Make sure you’re hands are below your heart. If they are higher than your heart your body has to work harder to get blood to your hands and could make sleeping harder. (Chase)

I have a weird method, I have like 5 feather pillows. One I squeeze between my legS, one in my left arm, one in my right arm and 2 under my head. If you have more than 5 i make a barrier around me which makes me feel protected from robbers and such. That puts your mind to ease. If you have a cotton pillow, put that under under your head and a feather right on top of it 😉 good luck. (Jake)

This might sound crazy but if you listen to your breathing it helps you get to sleep! I do it all the time and when I’m putting my little brothers to bed I always breathe loud so they can listen to it and it makes them go to bed faster too. (Someone)

I lay on my back, and place a pillow under each limb and slowly breathe in and out trying to relax myself. Try thinking of summer days, maybe even winter days. Whichever works for you. (Chris)

I used to have problems sleeping until a friend told me to buy an electric blanket. You could pick these up quite cheap. I thought it wasn’t going to work but I can say it does help. The warmth helps and it relaxes you. I used to get into bed at 11 and would fall asleep around 3 then be up for work at 7. 4 hours was not enough. Now with the blanket i would be asleep within 30 mins. (ADAM)

I know it sounds silly but someone told me this before and i tried it, I haven’t had a sleepless night in 4 years! Get into your most comfortable sleeping position. Lightly flex your toes a few times (nothing strenuous). Then gently wiggle your toes for a minute. Repeat this several times and just relax, works like a charm. (Lee)

Hang your leg off the side of the bed and just shake it really fast, I will personally guarantee this will put you to sleep. The shaking leg kinda vibrates the rest of your body. I’m assuming this creates an artificial mother-rocking-baby to sleep kinda thing. (Decoy)

Lay down in your bed on your back. Start at your toes, and contract your toe muscles as hard as you can for 15 seconds, then relax. Repeat this step one muscle at a time and move up to your whole foot, lower legs, knees, thighs, stomach, chest, shoulders, biceps/triceps, elbows, wrists, hands, fingers, neck, and jaw. Each time you do it include every body part’s muscle you have already squeezed. Move in a “line” up your body, stopping at each muscle you can think of to include your whole self. This makes your body less tense, relaxing you and making you tired for bed! (Katie)

My advice is to sleep naked. I used to wake up with my underwear bunching up and it was distracting, now I just sleep in the nude and nothing is constricting and it is comfortable. (Wayne Malynyk)

I personally find listening to an analog clock tick calming and soothing. (Uanns)

EXERCISE YOUR MIND

Invent something! How can you chop carrots using pedal power? Can you really find a way to electronically toast marsh mallows? (Pix)

I usually recite the alphabet but in animals. Like, a alligator, b bear, c camel. My boyfriend recites shots because he’s a bartender (Paige)

Concentrate on how the faster you fall asleep, the faster it will be tomorrow and then the faster you can do whatever you want to do tomorrow.You could also try focusing on what you are going to do once you wake up. Think: “I am going to get out of bed, I am going to put my slippers on, I am going to go to the bathroom…” (Pix)

Try reverse psychology on yourself, see how long you can keep your eyes open without blinking. This makes your eyes really tired, it clears your mind and when you do close them you feel so grateful and off you drift. (GaryF)

Lie in bed in a comfortable position and try to stay still, if your head itches refuse to touch it , refuse to move, just stay completely still like you are already sleeping and also try not to move your eyes, and try to concentrate only on your breath until you eventually fall asleep. (Good morning sunshine)

I’ve developed a way to fall asleep fast by making sure I don’t stick with a certain thought. Seemingly, while laying in bed and the time of pondering begins, a trail of thought starts which leads to falling asleep much later then hoped for. The majority of my thoughts come to me visually, but nonetheless, the same method will work on auditive thinkers too.

This is the part I base my method on:
As soon as I get a thought in my mind, I get a clear image or a verbal description. If I choose to think about it, the thought will lead to another thought. Which in turn, leads to yet another thought. This starts a chain reaction of thoughts which can go on for hours.

What to do about it?
Something, which really seems to do the trick making me sleep within 3 minutes under perfect conditions, is, as mentioned earlier, to make sure I do not stick with a thought which starts the chain reaction. Ever tried not thinking at all? It’s near impossible. So, ironically instead of trying not the think at all, I try to speed up my thinking. As soon as a thought pops up, I try to think of the immediate next thought I can think of. Every jump from thought to thought should take less than a fraction of a second. The next thought doesn’t have to be logical, as long as its a next thought. Instead of letting yourself stick with a single thought which would otherwise let yourself be entangled be daily problems and thus a pattern in which you could be for hours, you choose to think about the next thought as fast as possible and thus lose sight on what you are really thinking of. Losing track of thought by thinking as fast as possible makes everything blurry and nothing stand out, which subsequently makes the mind comparable with bliss as white noise to make you be able to glide into the new day. (Derrick)

What i usually do is try to act something out in a movie or book, play as a character, say the characters lines and such and before you know it, your basically KO’d from it. (Bahama myth)

Imagine your quilt is a protective shield. Nothing can harm you once you are in there. It is so warm and peaceful. Is that not better than outside? Don’t you want to stay there? Don’t you want to SLEEP? (Pix)

Think of everything that happened that day. Go through the schedule in your head of every little thing happened. If I had a bad day, then I try to see the good in it and the good that can come out of it. But don’t get angry or upset with something that happened, that’s why it’s important to stay positive. Anyway, thinking of very little activity will soon bore you, (Deja vu!) and hopefully drift off to sleep. If not, maybe thinking about your day can help you. It does to me, and being a senior in high school, it makes it easier to fall asleep with my very busy schedule. (Kaylaaaa)

Count down from 100-it slowly shuts your body down and relaxes you. (Vicky)

I would suggest that, if you have trouble sleeping, you should try allowing your mind to go where it wishes, no matter how ‘silly’ your thoughts seem, they are simply precursors to your dreams. Cathryne

Imagine your fears or worries floating into your wardrobe and into a box. Lock the box in your mind where do you put the key? I put mine in a imaginary safe in the back of my shed. Whatever you do, don’t think about those things.Tie particular worries to places. Only think about exams when you are on the school grounds, not your dead rabbit. Once you get home, you can think about your rabbit but not the exams. This helps reduce stress throughout the day and means sleep will come easier.Talk to someone you trust. I tell my BFF everything and she gives me advice and stuff and now I don’t worry anymore.Think about how lucky you are. Your exams may be approaching, but you got an A in French last year so you you will be ok.If none of that works, pretend to get a tiny brush and paint over all your worries white. Focus on each stroke, and by the time you are halfway there, you will be asleep. (Pix)

One thing that often helps me sleep is using reverse psychology, I lie down, close my eyes and try as hard as I can not to fall asleep. (Jago)

I get comfortable (sometimes I can’t get comfortable so I just lay still until I am) and think of someone with their arms around me and relax into the thought. (Zoey)

I usually make stories about myself getting into adventures with fantasy creatures and that kind of stuff but a friend of mine goes for action/cop stories with his favorite actress. (Anna)

Imagine yourself in a really wonderful dream, your perfect world. You may have just won the lottery or your in the Caribbean on vacation. What ever it is, just keep adding to it, one night I imagined I had won a free vacation :) around the world. I just though about where I would go, who I would meet. Don’t think technically, just dream and relax. (Beatrice)

Picture a light or energy moving through you, starting at your feet. Think of every boNe it passes through, and as it passes through, it relaxes that muscle. Slowly your body relaxes and you can’t move. After you have gone all the way up to your head, picture being on a feather like cloud, or floating in the air. (Julie Bisson)

Pretend you’re on a cloud, a nice, soft, white cloud. Imagine sleeping on it. Keeps me calm, stress free and then I fall asleep. (Bored)

What I do is try to write in my head. Just think of a simple scenario, such as a cat walking across a field. Then write that scene in your head, and try to picture it too. (Annie)

Think depressing thoughts. Seriously, whenever I’m having a hard time falling asleep, by the time my thinking drifts to something that makes my tear up or even mad, the energy of just feeling depressed/mad can knock me right out. (Courtney said so)

If you decide to count sheep it helps to imagine that the sheep are sleeping as you count each one. If you imagine playful/energetic sheep hopping over a fence it’s less helpful when trying to relax your own body. Andy

I usually try counting backwards from a thousand, I can usually tell right when I’m about to fall asleep because I’ll start mixing up the numbers and counting forward. (David)

Think of your favorite color and inhale and exhale. (Bridget)

My grandma always tells me to tense up a body part at a time and say 3 times the body part you’re tensing up. Then after the 3 times you slowly release them and say what you’re releasing. You go from toes up. So you would go toes, feet, calves (not too hard though to prevent cramping), theighs, abs, chest, upper arm, lower arm, hands, fingers, mouth, eyes. Pretty much what this does is excersise and wear out your body and then relax it. Its also a good way to keep stressful thoughts from your mind. The trick is REALLY concentrating on each part you’re tensing up and make sure you’re either saying in your head or out loud (for example) “I am tensing my toes” and for the release, “I am releasing my toes”. (Melissa)

Try humming to yourself. A childhood rhyme possibly, anything that brings back good memories. Meditation Psychiatrist (Dr Phillips)

The best way to sleep is to close your eyes and think of running water out of a tap it always works. (Bob)

I find that thinking real hard about a color in you head will put you to sleep. I found myself trying to picture the color on any material, shirt, pants, whatever, and i found myself falling into a snooze and then waking up from realization. But you have to see the color perfect because if you just simply picture it, it will come out gray, you need to see the full object in color. (Andy)

I imagine myself on a little boat in the middle of the gorgeous turquoise ocean, slightly rocking back and forth with the waves. Or I picture myself on a giant rocking chair. Like I mean giant, like where you would usually sit, I imagine being small enough to lay there. And I pretend I’m rocking back and forth on it. (Kylie)

I find that imagining myself sinking into my mattress helps. I start with my feet, and work my way slowly up my body relaxing my muscles as I go. If you close your eyes, focus on relaxing your muscles and feeling them sink into the mattress (starting with feet and working up), it actually feels as though you’re sinking deeper into your bed. Then telling yourself your eyes are getting heavy as you feel your head sink in… (Jake)

I found saying the word sleep made me nod off . So the next night I said the word sleep over and over in the same calm tone , and before I knew it I was fast asleep. I think it is just like when someone asks you are you hungry , and that’s when you feel it . (Jody Downes)

Close your eyes (sometimes you can with your eyes open) and focus on the things that your brain wants to think of. Clear your mind and you can see the most random/strange images of whatever your brain produces. For example, it could be a yellow striped dog and then one of the stripes changes into a disc. It hard to master, and I don’t know exactly what its called, but like I said, once you learn how to do it, its wonderful! (Amanda)

What really helps me most of the time is to tell my body to sleep. One body part at a time. I start with my toes I tell them in my head of course to go to sleep and I give the ten sec. Then my ankles. My calves, my knees, my thighs. Going all the way up to my head. Usually about my stomach or shoulders I’m out. Of it takes a while you may alternate sides if the body. Like left toes right toes, etc. There is a rule though: if you move then your whole body is awake again and you have to start over. (Hannah K)

If you gamble,you probably already know where all the slot machines are in your favorite casino. Think about walking up to one and hitting a jackpot of a few thousand,collect and put the money in your pocket. Then go to another slot machine and hit another jackpot and so on.think about what your going to do with the money you won. Keep the story going and before you know it,it is time to start another day. David Rodriguez

This may sound kinda silly but I find if I have stressful things on my mind I find that actually pretending it’s an object on me to take it off my body and throw it out into the open for me to deal with in the morning and then focus on something positive. (Danni)

What helps me is closing my eyes and imagining what I will do the next day and what I will dress like and how I will look and basically make up a sort of fantasy tomorrow. This might also make you have dreams about it. (Sorcha)

I am diagnosed ADHD and my mind wanders a lot, hence the insomnia. It helps to imagine that you are falling eternally, or that you are swinging back and forth. Depending on the strength of your mind, you actually begin to float a bit which helps you sleep. It’s very relaxing, like being on a cloud. (Paige)

Something that works for me is to think about waking up in the morning and wanting to go back to sleep. (Lizzy)

When you are visiting a relaxing location: the beach, the woods, the mountains, etc., find a some place that is peaceful to you and “take a picture” of that location and environment with your mind and re-use it later. While falling asleep you can pretend that you are back in that peaceful location to help with relaxation. (Andy)

The fastest and most comfortable way to fall asleep is to close your eyes and visualize yourself sleeping…Imagine you’re in your bed high on a cloud with soft pillows and a starry sky. However you do this make sure that you sense the way your sleepy self feels and looks while sleeping. Imagining yourself sleeping the way you would want to. (Charles)

When I close my eyes I think of a white shape on a black background, usually I think of a square for some reason.. Anyway, when my thoughts start to drift off to think about something that happened during the day or whatever, I would then force myself to concentrate on the shape. (Sarah)

Set a bedtime for yourself, and always be in bed a relaxing at that time. You don’t have to sleep, you could read a book until you feel tired. Turn off the light and count. kylie

I learned this one when I was really young since I went to my Grandpa’s every weekend and he had a huge lake. For a long amount of time you should play in the water, maybe even float, especially towards the evening. When I was little, it would be hours after that I’d go to bed and I could still feel the waves under me! It was relaxing, My cousins and siblings all had this happen to them afterwards, so I’m not the only one, it just takes a lot of water time. (Kathy)

If you want to fall asleep fast…wake up a bit earlier. it’ll be hard the first few days but once you get a good routine it’ll be great. Brayden

2 YOGA BREATHING TECHNIQUES TO FALL ASLEEP FAST

yoga breathing, yoga sleep,These breathing methods relax your body and mind, preparing you for a night of sleep. Click each video and follow the step by step instructions or check the Shape website.

1. Alternate Nostril Breathing

2. Deep Throat Breathing

deep throat breathing, throat breathing, yoga sleep

 

[Image via Flickr]

38% OF AMERICANS HAVE SLEEP RELATED PROBLEMS

insomnia, sleep problems Yes, 38%, about 119 million Americans have sleep disorders that interfere with their daily activities. A survey conducted by Replacement mattress had the following findings:

  • most affected are young women with a low income and living in a rural area
  • 40.8% of women admitted to having sleep disorders, compared to 36.6% of men
  • contrary to popular beliefs, more men (7%) than women (2%) complain that they’re unable to get some shut-eye because of their partner’s disrupted sleep
  • women have problem falling asleep and often experience daytime sleepiness
  • more women (9.2%)  than men (7.5%) wake up with aches and pains
  • young adults are experiencing more sleepless nights compared to elderly or middle-aged people

Top sleeping problems experienced by men and women

  1. Difficulty falling asleep and/or sleeping
  2. Sleep apnea or snoring
  3. Usually feeling sleepy during the day
  4. Waking up with pain in the morning
  5. Sleep issues due to partner’s sleep habits

[Image via Flickr]

ARE YOU SLEEP DEPRIVED? TAKE THIS TEST TO FIGURE IT OUT

In this short video, Richard Wiseman pinpoints some of the symptoms that are signs of sleep deprivation and even has a small test for you to test your agility. Chances are that if you need an alarm clock to wake up or fall asleep instantly you may need t get more sleep. He has a great resource for those who keep in mind their sleep cycles when going to bed. Each cycle is about 90 minutes each and to make sure you don’t disrupt a cycle and wake up even more tired. He created a free schedule that tells you when you should go to bed, depending at what hour you want to wake up in the morning.

WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO BLOCK SOUNDS FROM UNDER DOOR WHILE SLEEPING?

block sound from under the door

I often get woken up by someone passing near my door or by sounds coming from underneath it. But I found the best way to block sounds from under door while sleeping. I had to try a few things before I found the perfect solution for me and I’m going to share all of them because one of them might be your way out.

The first thing I tried

Noise pollution is a very nasty business and it can “aid” us sleep less and be tired at school or at work. I was feeling so tired because of constant sounds coming from under my door that I started to think what I could do to fix this. I realized that if I move my bed near the other end of the room (so that my door) will be a lot further) I might just get some rest. Tired as I was I got up from my bed and pushed it towards the other wall. Sat down in complete silence and waited. At first I thought I was in heaven because it was quite for a few minutes and then I realized the problem wasn’t fixed. I could still hear noise coming from my door. It was better now but it still was enough to not be able to fall asleep.

Tip: You can even move more furniture around and see if that makes any difference. If you can, try moving something between your bed and the door to attenuate the sounds.

Second idea: why didn’t I think of that in the first place?

Since the noise was not as powerful anymore I thought I would need something to put under the door so I placed an under the door draft guard and see how that would work. Not being able to sleep I went online and ordered a double sided door draft stopper. Then I wondered: “what if this is still not enough?” so I ordered a draft stopper filled with fragrant balsam (I like nice smells :)). They both arrived within 2 days and I placed the first draft stopper underneath the door and the other on right in front of it. They greatly reduced noise and light coming from the other side. It was pretty quiet and a “normal” person would have slept like a log but not me! I must have super ears or something because I could still hear some noise and was falling asleep only to wake up 5 minutes later.

So, upwards and onwards to the next thing: white noise

I honestly thought there is no best way to block sound from under door while sleeping but the white noise machine I bought proved me wrong. I’m so glad it did! What really helped me was the Marpac sound machine! Not only does this block sounds coming from the door but it also helps with any sounds coming from anywhere! And as an added bonus, it seems to make me sleepy whenever I hear it.

So, for me, this combination worked wonders. For some, the white sound machine might be enough. For others, the draft stoppers will do the trick or just moving furniture around the room. Start with what doesn’t cost any money or doesn’t require much effort and move on if that doesn’t work. While I was researching how to get rid of the noise coming from under my door (yep, remember I couldn’t sleep?), I found out a few other tips that might be of help to someone else:

1. You might want to really check if the noise is actually coming from under the door and not through the door itself. This wasn’t the case for me because the door was pretty new, but it might happen. I’ve heard of cases where people had to use a door insulating foam to fill in the gaps in their door.

2. Although it might sound scary, there is also the possibility you need to change the door because it’s too used and has too many cracks and gaps. If your door is old then noise is easily going to get in no matter what you do. This is an expensive solution but it’s sometimes unavoidable.

Those are the things I learned about while browsing the web at 2 A.M. for the best way to block sound from under door while sleeping.

[Image via Flickr]