How to Fall Asleep Fast
Everyone wants it: the perfect night’s sleep. However, for some of us, falling asleep at night can feel like an unattainable dream. It could be that you have a sleep disorder, or you may just need an extra push to get you sleeping soundly. If you’re lying awake and desperately putting pressure on yourself to fall asleep, that could be a reason you can’t. Here are a few simple, yet essential, tips for falling asleep quickly and easily.
Be mindful of temperature
Counterintuitive though it may seem, we actually sleep better when it is cooler inside our rooms. Falling asleep makes your body’s internal temperature drop a little, and some researchers believe that cooling down your room (maybe by switching your AC on or putting the temperature down a few degrees) can help this along, almost as though you’re tricking your body into thinking that it’s asleep. In fact, new mattress materials like the gel-infused layer of the Lull Mattress are designed to take advantage of this.
Several studies have found that classical music (or any music that has a slower beat of 80 to 60 beats per minute) can help you wind down after a long day. Sleep quality will also improve as studies have demonstrated that 45 minutes of slow music can put you to sleep and keep you there.
Get up for ten minutes
If you’re lying awake and having trouble sleeping, try the opposite: attempt to do something that involves both your mental and physical activity centers in your brain. Do a puzzle for ten minutes, or wash dishes while playing a word-association game in your head. This 10-minute activity is designed to disassociate your bed with activity and being awake. If you’re unable to sleep, it could be because your mind hasn’t associated your bed with restfulness. By separating the two, you’re increasing your chances of getting a good night’s rest. Another variation of this idea is to try reverse psychology: attempting to stay awake purposefully often has the opposite effect, as your body fights your determination to stay awake and realizes how tired it is.
Hide the clock
Tuck your clock out of sight -- sitting there and watching the minutes tick by might actually be keeping you awake. The more you stare at the clock and do a mental countdown in your head (“If I fall asleep now, I can get ____ hours of sleep before my alarm goes off”) the lower your chances of getting to sleep.
Turn off the technology
Staring at a bright screen and aimlessly scrolling through Twitter might be some of our favorite pre-bedtime activities, but being on your phone, tablet, iPad, laptop, or any other technological device can keep you awake, as your brain is being engaged when it should be decompressing. Also, the screen is a bright light, and bright lights are not conducive to sleep. Put the technology out of sight or turn it off. Try reading a book instead.
Wear socks to sleep
This might seem like a strange tip, but a study done by Swiss researchers found that putting on a pair of socks before trying to fall asleep helps you get a good night’s rest, as the top indicator of restfulness is warm hands and feet. Warming up your feet by slipping on a cozy pair of socks is definitely worth a try if you’re running into trouble.
These tips and tricks to falling asleep will hopefully help you get the good night’s rest that you deserve. If nothing helps, you can examine your bed and mattress – it might be time to replace your old spring mattress with memory foam or check with your physician for advice on pharmaceutical alternatives. Sweeter dreams are always worth the time and trouble!