If you are one of many of can’t sleep at night, then read through sleep tricks for insomnia that work. These sleep tricks can lead to better sleep, health, and productive days. Each of the tips I share below will work for most. If you are already using some of them great, try implementing the others to increase your sleep health.
Why Use Sleep Tricks For Insomnia
There are many of us who will experience short-term insomnia. Mine happened when I was diagnosed with cancer—a troubling time not only for me but for my family as well. Insomnia can make it difficult to fall asleep, especially if you have too much going on. Although our sleep patterns may differ, adults need at least seven hours of sleep to improve their daily living. The tricks I share with you can make all the difference in how much sleep you can be getting.
Sleep Tricks For Insomnia That Work
1. Minimize Daytime Naps
Are you one of those who love their daytime naps but then wonder why you cannot sleep at night? If so, then your naps could be longer than they should be, which is 15-20 minutes. Getting a 15–20-minute nap is enough to rejuvenate you for the day; any more than that, and you will find yourself wandering the halls at night.
When you nap properly while getting a good night rest, there are few benefits that you will be thankful for; they are:
- Improved energy
- Better awareness
- Quicker reaction time
But sleeping too much during the daytime leads to insomnia which can cause grogginess or disorientation.
2. Cover Your Clock When Going To Bed
It is a fact if you watch the clock at night, it moves pretty fast. Especially when you are trying to get sleep, the anxiety this builds in person is enough to cause our fight-or-flight hormones to get released. These hormones interfere with our sleeping schedule.
You can prevent this from happening by covering your clock because your mind isn’t going crazy, thinking why you are not sleeping yet. When we get worked up at night, it takes a lot to soothe our minds. Avoid this altogether by not watching the clock. It is not like you are getting paid to sleep; it is for your benefit.
3. Use A Pillow Between Your Legs
When using a pillow between your legs, you will release tension in your hips and backs. Hips and back pain are a common cause of a person not being able to sleep. Also, you can improve blood circulation, which prevents cramping or tingling around the lower legs and toes.
Pregnant women will benefit from using a pillow between their legs to help support and keep the belly in place. The technique also improves posture and helps to keep the muscles and body in alignment.
4. Shush Out Outside Noises
Think back to when your partner was snoring; what did you do when you could not sleep. If you are anything like me, then you probably got up and started watching TV. Before you know, morning has arrived, and the snoring was still going on.
Loud neighbors can also be a source of outside loud noises. If you are a sensitive sleeper, then consider getting sleep headphones. Even when family members are walking around, the noise can cause a person to wake up. And you know how hard it is to fall back asleep. Sleeping headphones will help to ambient noise to a minimum.
5. Use Natural Sleeping Aids
Over-the-counter sleeping aids are preferable to prescribed as they can be addictive. Natural sleeping aids are safer and tend to have fewer side effects than those you purchase by prescription.
There is a general worry that being dependent on medication can cause withdrawal symptoms; to some degree, this is true. You might even have a more challenging time falling asleep when you stop using them. Natural aids usually do not lead to dependence on them. Also, there is a lower risk of using them. But you should consult your doctor before commencing on any types of sleep aids.
6. Keep Your Toes Warm
Having cold toes or feet makes for a very restless night. When our feet get cold, the blood vessels get restricted, which leads to less blood circulation. Having warm toes and feet lets our brain know it is time to go to sleep.
A straightforward way is to get nighttime socks for sleeping. Most nights, I wear socks to sleep; the day I forget, I find myself waking up quite a bit. Some women find that wearing socks at night helps prevent hot flashes by keeping their bodies at a cooler temperature.
7. Use A Weighted Blanket
Weighted Blankets are blankets that can weigh up to 30 pounds and are used for therapeutic reasons. Many people use them to relieve anxiety or stress. Using extra weight when sleeping can help a person feel comforted as well a calming effect is created over the body.
With these blankets, you will receive deep pressure stimulation to create a secure feeling. The weighted blanket will lead to being gently hugged, which helps to release dopamine and serotonin. Both are feel-good chemicals that can make you feel calm and happy.
Because you are well-rested, your daytime interaction with others will also improve. Here a few other reasons to get a weighted blanket:
- Reduce nighttime restlessness
- Aids Fibromyalgia sufferers
- Can lower seizure incidence
- Improve heart rate
Studies have also suggested that people with autism will also benefit from these blankets. Getting a good night’s sleep is essential for all; if a weighted blanket can help, why not get one.
8. Drink Banana Tea
Banana tea is becoming quite popular among insomniacs. The primary nutrients in banana tea, potassium, and magnesium are essential to falling and staying asleep. Both of these minerals help our muscles to relax.
Another benefit of banana tea is the amino acid tryptophan which produces both the hormones serotonin and melatonin.
You can make the tea from the banana itself or the simple by using the peels. If you are using just the banana itself, you would slice the banana and boil it for 10 minutes. After this, all you need to do is strain the tea, let it cool down enough to drink; if you are a hot tea drinker, then, of course, drink it hot.
With the banana peels, the steps are a bit more involved. You would need to dehydrate the peels, grind them and make tea as you would with tea leaves. One banana peel is enough for one cup of tea.
9. Avoid Late Time Caffeine
Caffeine is a nighttime stimulant and should be avoided during the evening or 6 hours before bedtime. Caffeine is not only found in coffee, but tea, chocolates, and sodas also contain it.
This stimulant can stay in our body for up to 12 hours. So having some past noon will ensure that you are up all night. The thing with caffeine is that the more you drink, the intolerant you become to it. This means you will need to keep increasing your intake. Withdrawals from caffeine can also affect your sleep. You may end up with headaches or restlessness.
You will be doing yourself a massive favor by limiting your caffeine, but if you need your coffee or tea, why not go for decaffeinated.
10. Keep Your Workout For Morning Or Afternoon
Exercising is great for everyone. Not only does it increase our endurance, but it also increases our chance of being healthy. But exercising a few hours before sleep will decrease your health due to lack of sleep.
Exercise affects our sleep by increasing heart rate and core temperature. Staying at an exercise rate will also be detrimental to our nervous and endocrine system. Not good when trying to sleep.
Both cortisol and norepinephrine are released when working out. Not necessarily bad when working out. But after working, cortisol increases stress and anxiety while norepinephrine will increase adrenaline, making it difficult to sleep.
11. Maintain A Good Diet
Getting proper sleep helps us make better decisions the next day. Now, if we are consuming food that will interrupt sleep means restorative sleep can become non-existent.
A good diet will increase our sleep, but resting and recovering will help our brain process what has gone on during the day. Thus, making our problem-solving skills become a priority.
Many people suffer from GERD, but when eating late at night, it increases the chances of heartburn, which means staying up at night. Sleeping deprivation also leads to poorer food choices which can make us gain weight. Did you know that both leptin and ghrelin production, both hormones that help control appetite, can get thrown off when we lack sleep?
12. Turn Off The Lights
By turning off the lights, your immune system will thank you and work more efficiently. Scientists now say that creating a darker sleeping space will increase the production of melatonin. Melatonin fights diseases such as cancer and heart-related issues.
Melatonin will turn off cancer-growing cells, but melatonin production will switch off if there is even a bit of light streaming through. Some people like me need melatonin to keep fighting cancer.
One of the things I have done is added black curtains to my room. These curtains keep it extra dark to promote melatonin production, plus when I wake up in the morning, it helps to wake up in the dimmer room—no need for eye adjusting.
Even going on your gadgets at night, which invites light, will decrease melatonin. Knowing when to turn off and go into the darkness for sleep is critical.
13. Avoid Nightly Allergy Triggers
Nighttime allergies affect both children and adults alike. People can get triggered by pet dander, pollen, mold, and other environmental allergens in the air. Itching, watery eyes, and stuffy nose are among the common culprits at night, caused by allergies.
Dust mites and bed bugs are commonly found in our sleeping space. These two accounts for top allergy creation. For many nighttime allergies are year-round.
There are a few ways to avoid this from happening, such as keeping pets off your bed or getting hypoallergenic bedding, which keeps allergens away from your bed.
14. Make Your Bed Strictly For Sleep
It can become easy to start watching TV in our room, especially if we want to watch something others are not interested in. Nowadays, more than 30% of adults have TVs in their rooms.
But having a TV means not getting enough sleep. Once the TV is on, it can become easy to jump from one show to another before you know the day has arrived. Not only do you not get enough sleep, but your daily decision-making skills will also be impacted.
Another thing watching TV will do is decrease melatonin production, which only happens when there is total darkness. So, your body becomes less immune to fighting disease.
15. Stick To Your Sleep Schedule
Sleep schedules can get thrown off with the slightest adjustment. It can become challenging to stick to one due to fear of missing out on what’s happening globally. Fear of missing out not only affects people during the daytime, but it is also prevalent among children and adults during the night.
Keeping a regular sleep schedule will help maintain the body’s internal clock, which will aid in sleeping and waking up with more ease. A natural rhythm of sleeping will settle you into a regular sleep-wake cycle.
An irregular sleep schedule will lead to an irritable mood, lack of concentration and memory problems, headaches, and cognitive skills decline. Ideally, none of us want to experience the negative side effect due to lack of sleep, making it vital to maintain a proper sleep schedule.
What works for me is turning in at the same time every day. This keeps me accountable to myself. If I do not follow this rule, I have no one but myself to blame for a bad day.
Final Takeaway From Sleep Tricks For Insomnia That work
In many instances, making slight changes to your lifestyle can relieve insomnia. Usually, insomnia is short-lived, but for some, it can last longer. By adjusting your nightly routine, you can enhance your sleep quality. Hopefully, you find my sleep tricks for insomnia that work helpful in maintaining proper sleep.
Please share in the comments below what tricks you use to get a good night’s sleep.
Reading is my favorite thing to do. But other than reading, I enjoy discovering new techniques on how to do something in simpler methods. My daughter likes to call me the Renaissance woman. So I do have to live up to the name.
One of my main issues is sleeping, so I’m always searching for new ways to get a good night sleep, I’m more than happy to share them with you.
My posts are either geared towards pain or self-help. Pain posts because I suffer from ongoing cancer pain. In the past 6 years of my fight with cancer, I have learned many ways to deal with pain, especially when going to bed.
The self-help posts come from my work as a mental health counselor for over 15+ years. My background in counseling training is from UFV and RRU. I also have personal trainer certification from IFA, so I might throw in some exercise posts as well.