At one point in our lives, we've all been there. We're worried about an important job interview or just can't seem to find the proper sleeping position and then it's 3:00 a.m. and we still can't sleep. Having to trudge into work the next day on three hours' sleep is not fun, but our brains just didn't wanna shut off for the night. If you've been having some trouble falling asleep you might be interested to know there are science-backed ways to fall asleep faster. These tips will allow you to hit the hay in peace without smashing the snooze button in the morning.
Studies have shown that specific essential oils like lavender have great effects on your sleeping. Lavender aids in helping you fall asleep and has been called a sedative oil that keeps you sleeping peacefully. Even if you're someone who thought that essential oils were hokey, you should try it out before you knock it. You may just find that lavender diffusers will lull you to sleep more effectively than you thought. Not to mention, lavender has been found to increase vigor in the morning for men and women. So, add that to the list of things this little essential oil can do for you.
I know that cranking up the air conditioning sounds like a huge turn-off for some people, but a cooler room has been linked to helping people sleep. A study that came from the University of South Australia discovered that the body needs to drop its core temperature for you to fall asleep naturally. Dr. Cameron Van den Heuvel said that onset insomniacs have a higher body temperature and one of the keys to getting a good night's sleep is to drop the temperature of the room a little bit. You should aim to dial that thermostat anywhere from 60-67 degrees F.
Hop in the shower before you head to bed to regulate your body temperature. As you enter a cooler room, the temperature will send a signal to your brain that it's time to sleep and you'll be able to get to bed faster and with ease. Studies have shown that when you expose your body to the temperature changes of a warm shower followed by a cool room, your internal clock will be kept in check. Dr. Joseph Takahashi of the study explained that it only takes a small temperature to signal the internal clocks in our bodies, so you should be embracing that warm shower before bed.
Well, the good news is that even if you're not too keen on a cooler room at least it's recommended that you bundle up too. There are studies out there that suggest you sleep with socks on in order to get the blood flowing to your feet and improve circulation thereby reducing the amount of time it takes to pass out. Additional articles have suggested that wearing socks tells the brain it's time to hit the sack and you'll be able to fall asleep faster because of this. So, grab your favorite pair of socks and slap them on your feet to get to bed faster.
When you're all snuggled in bed with your toes warming in a pair of socks, put on some soothing music to better the atmosphere. Studies have proven that when you listen to music for about 45 minutes before bed you're more likely to fall asleep faster and more efficiently. They recommend that you put on some classical music to help you fall asleep and even suggested that nurses could use this method to treat insomnia in patients. Music can also help you reduce anxiety and blood pressure, so turn up that Beethoven before bed.
I know that this sounds a little ironic since one of the things that keep us up at night is usually an overactive imagination. But, there's a big difference between letting your thoughts run rampant and deliberately imagining a relaxing place. Studies show that when you intentionally envision a relaxing place you could fall asleep about 20 minutes faster than people who don't bother to try this exercise. So, when you're tossing and turning you should focus on the beach or sitting by the lake somewhere to calm your mind and help you get to sleep.
It can be tempting to glare at the clock when we can't sleep or count down how much longer we have until our work day starts, but you should avoid doing that. Instead, studies suggest you should hide your clocks because "clock watching" is a common trait found in insomniacs. Of course, when you're staring down the clock's face all you're doing is encouraging your worrying and reminding yourself that you can't sleep. You should avoid looking at your clocks and instead take a warm shower or practice your breathing to get to bed easier.
There is a special kind of breathing technique that you can try to get to sleep fast. It's called the 4-7-8 method and it requires that you do a few things:
This breathing will help relax you and fall asleep much faster.
Sleeping in the proper position is a huge factor in falling asleep faster. Falling asleep on your back or your side are the best positions for you while sleeping on your stomach is easily the worst. Sleeping on your back comes with a slew of health and cosmetic benefits like keeping skin taut and alleviating neck pain. Sleeping on your side will allow for your spine to remain elongated and reduces snoring.
However, sleeping on your stomach doesn't really do anything good for you. It adds pressure on your spine and neck and encourages muscle pain just about anywhere in your body because of the added pressure on your spine and therefore your nerves.
This should be a no-brainer but oftentimes we pass out in uncomfortable clothing or as we sit awake for hours, we realize that our pajamas aren't as comfy as we thought. Studies have suggested that you wear comfortable fabric that breathes well so you can get to sleep easier. For example, people who fell asleep in wool pajamas had a harder time falling asleep than those who slept in cotton clothing. So, what you wear to bed can really contribute to your sleeping patterns.
With these methods to help you fall asleep fast, you'll be able to get a better night's sleep! You can also munch on certain things throughout the day for a good night's sleep so consider eating some passionfruit, avocado, or warm milk before bed too! Keep those clocks hidden and practice different breathing techniques for an easier time drifting off to sleep.