According to the Sleep Health Foundation, about 1 in 3 people have insomnia. If you’re struggling with falling asleep, you’re definitely not the only one.
Are you trying to figure out how to fall asleep fast and easy? If yes, you should check out some of our best tips right here.
Focus on Breathing
If you’re struggling to fall asleep, you should try and focus on breathing. The way we breathe can play a role in regulating our autonomic nervous system, which in turn regulates our motivation, relaxation, and heart rate.
If you have shallow, quick breaths, you may be telling your body that it needs to be in an anxious state, which can prevent you from falling asleep. However, if you take deep, belly breaths, it can be so much more calming and relaxing.
There is a popular method that many people use to fall asleep called the 4-7-8 method. The process is pretty simple.
To do this, just place the tip of your tongue behind your upper teeth. You have to do this throughout the entire exercise.
First, exhale with your mouth, making an exhalation noise.
Then you have to close your mouth and inhale the air through your nose. While doing this, count to 4.
Then, hold this breath and count to 7.
Next, exhale out of your mouth while you count to 8. Make sure to make the noise again.
Try practicing this method before you’re trying to go to bed. Doing it when your back is completely straight sitting down might make it easier for when you try it while lying in bed.
Get Up and Do Something for 10 Minutes
If the breathing method was able to put you to sleep but you still find yourself waking in the middle of the night, try getting up and doing something for ten minutes.
If you wake up and can’t fall back asleep, it’s better to get up and do something rather than tossing and turning in bed.
Try doing something that requires you to think and use your hands. Doing a puzzle or finding a coloring back can always help. You may even want to get up to take some vitamins to help sleep.
Make sure you don’t turn on the TV or use your phone, because these devices have a blue light, which can suppress your melatonin, which is helpful in making sure you can fall asleep.
The reason you’re doing this is to associate your bed only with sleeping. The only thing you should use your bed for is for sleep and if you have sex. If you can’t sleep, make sure you get out of bed or otherwise you’ll be associating your bed with not being able to sleep.
Get on a Schedule
Getting on a schedule will also help you learn how to fall asleep fast and easy.
Your body follows a circadian rhythm, which is a clock inside your body that tells you when you should be awake, and when you should feel sleepy and go to bed.
When you go to bed and wake up at the same time, this helps to normalize your circadian rhythm. However, if you aren’t consistent with these times, your rhythm will get messed up, and then it will be harder to fall asleep.
You should also make sure that you try and get at least seven to nine hours of good sleep per night.
To help with this, make sure you also schedule about a half-hour of time to unwind from the day before you get into bed. This can help relax you and tell your body that you’re getting ready to go to bed.
Don’t Look at Your Clock
It can be tempting when you’re trying to fall asleep to look at the clock to see how much time has passed. Or wonder how much more time you have left to sleep before you have to get up the next day.
If you wake up in the middle of the night, you may look to the clock and then start to stress about the fact that you can’t fall asleep. Watching the time slip away that you could’ve gotten more sleep can really keep you up longer.
To make it worse, when you wake up on a regular basis, this tells your circadian rhythm that now is a good time to fall back asleep, which means that you may wake up more anyway.
If you can, try removing the clock from your room. If you need an alarm to wake up, turn the clock to the wall so that you won’t see what time it is when you wake up in the middle of the night.
Find the Right Mattress
Finding the right mattress can also make or break a good night’s sleep. There isn’t one mattress that will work for everyone. Everyone has different preferences and gets better sleep on one or the other.
You’ll need a mattress based on your sleeping position, your level of activity, your age, and even other factors that will determine how hard or soft your mattress can be.
There are all kinds of mattresses that you can buy, but you should go to a mattress store and test some out to see which one works for you.
Some mattress companies will even let you try the mattress risk-free for some days. That way you can try it out to see if it really does help you get a night of better sleep or not.
Take a Warm Shower Before Bed
Before you get into bed, you should try taking a warm shower.
When you warm your body up by taking a hot shower, you can step into the cold air of your bedroom. This means that your body temperature will drop even more.
This means that your temperature decrease will also raise your metabolism. It will help prep your body for a night of better sleep as well.
In addition to your body temperature, a shower can also help you unwind and relax. The hot water can feel like a massage.
If you take a shower at the same time every night, that’s even better. It’ll be a part of your consistent bedtime routine, and you’ll be able to see the value of the nighttime showers.
That way you tell your body that after the shower, you’ll know that sleep is going to come next. Then your body will start to prepare for it.
Turn Off the Lights, Including Your Phone
Before you get ready to go to bed, you should make sure that you turn off any lights, and yes, that includes your phone, TV, or laptop.
Before smartphones, nighttime used to be completely dark, and pretty cold as well.
Researchers have found that cold air is actually better for sleep.
Experts have also found that artificial lighting, like from electronics or street lights, can disrupt your circadian rhythm and decrease your sleep quality.
Make sure that when you design your bedroom, you don’t have any artificial lights or other loud noises. You should make sure that it’s a dark environment, like a sleep cave. If there is a street lamp right outside your window, try getting blackout shades.
If you can’t afford that, getting an eye mask could also help.
Don’t lay in bed and sit on your phone or your laptop, and you also shouldn’t have a TV in your bedroom.
To help with your sleep cave, you should also dim the lights or turn them off for about thirty minutes. Having a lamplight or some other soft light could really help signal to your body that it’s about time to go to bed.
Trick Your Brain
Lastly, if none of these tips work, you can try tricking your brain.
You know how when you tell someone to do something, and then they do the opposite? Well, your brain works the same way.
Instead of thinking about how badly you need to go to sleep, try forcing yourself to stay awake. Keep your eyes open and focus on something, and soon you’ll find that your eyes start to get heavy.
Eventually, you won’t be able to keep them open, and you’ll start to fall asleep.
Discover More Tips on How to Fall Asleep Fast and Easy
These are only a few tips on how to fall asleep fast and easy, but there are so many more out there.
If these tips still don’t work and you’re still not able to sleep through the night, you may want to make an appointment with your doctor to see if there is anything they can do to help.
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