Tricks to fall asleep faster
You have to be awake in six hours, and you are tossing and turning, no closer to falling asleep than you were an hour ago. We’ve got a few tricks.
1. Stop stressing. Everything seems worse in the middle of the night, especially that panicky feeling that the following day will be a disaster because you won’t be able to sleep. The Ohio Sleep Medicine Institute suggests that you shouldn’t catastrophize when you’re having trouble sleeping, and realize that you’ll have better sleep the following night.
2. Don’t stay in bed awake.
You may feel like you should keep trying to fall asleep, but unless you’re sleepy, you shouldn’t stay in bed. According to the American Sleep Association, you shouldn’t stay in bed awake for more than five to 10 minutes. If you’re still awake, get out of bed and sit in a chair in the dark sans TV or internet, which will stimulate you. You can turn on a soft light and read until you get sleepy, and then return to bed. If it happens again, continue getting up. Avoid napping during the day and get up at your correct time, and your sleep cycle should normalize in a few days.
3. Don’t exercise after 2 p.m. Exercise promotes continuous sleep, but it can also interfere with sleep, according to the ASA. It recommends you continue to exercise regularly, but do it before 2 p.m. Exercise circulates endorphins into your body, which could cause difficulty falling asleep.
4. Make your bedroom comfortable. Warmer may be cozier, but cooler is better for falling asleep, the ASA says. The TV and other noise-makers should be off, though background white noise is good. Pets should be outside the room if they wake you, and bright lights should be off, the ASA says. The clock should be hidden, and you should not look at it at any point in the night, as this could make you nervous, leading to insomnia.