How to fall asleep fast
Avoiding stimulants to help sleep come quickly
Wondering how to fall asleep quickly? Did you know one of the main reasons people struggle to fall asleep is due to the things they’re doing or foods they’re eating before bed. Here are some common things to avoid during evening hours if you want to fall asleep fast:
- Avoid caffeine – remember it’s not only coffee and tea that are the culprits, other common evening treats like sodas and chocolate may contain sleep-stealing caffeine too. Try a cup of warm milk or soothing chamomile tea instead.
- Avoid spicy food – many spices can make it difficult to fall asleep fast. Try keeping a food diary to look for patterns, as some people find different spices affect them in different ways.
- Avoid exercise directly before bed – did you know that a work out right before bedtime can cause an adrenaline boost that will mean you struggle to fall asleep quickly? Incidentally, physical exercise earlier in the day could help you to fall asleep faster.
- Avoid electronic devices in the lead up to bedtime – this one can seem easier said than done as we become more and more reliant on our phones and tablets. But it has been scientifically proven that the blue light emitted from these screens can interfere with the production of melatonin that our body needs to get to sleep fast.
Improving your sleep environment to help you fall asleep quickly
When you’re looking for ways to fall asleep fast, it’s important you think about your bedroom and whether it is doing everything it can be to help your body get ready for sleep. Try these tips to fall asleep fast:
- When you’re struggling to drift off, darkness is your friend. This might mean blackout blinds to stop the glare from that poorly positioned street light or simply duct tape over the glowing red light on an electrical device.
- As you head to bed (and if you visit the bathroom in the middle of the night), make sure any light you use is dim and preferably gives off red light as opposed to white. Switching on a bright light could trick your brain into releasing chemicals to wake you up ready for the day.
- Remove distracting noises such as a ticking clock, or change the settings on your gas boiler so it doesn’t fire up as you’re trying to fall asleep.
- They say tidy room, tidy mind – and this is certainly true when you want to get to sleep fast. If your room is clean you’ll automatically feel calmer and more relaxed as you head to bed.
- Choose bedding that works with your body to promote good sleep. Wool bedding can help to regulate your body temperature preventing you feeling too warm or too cool at night. This will help you drift off in comfort. Wool bedding can also help to reduce common allergies and night-time snuffles helping you breathe easier.
- If you feel your mattress could use a little softening or you can feel a few lumps and bumps why not try a wool mattress topper for added comfort that might just help you get to sleep faster.
Find ways to relax and unwind before sleep
Thoughts racing through your head? Can’t shake off the stresses of the day? Finding ways to calm your mind before bed will help. Try these ways to fall asleep fast by relaxing your body and brain:
- Tune into your circadian rhythm and get your sleep into a routine. Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every night and your body will soon get used to readying itself for sleep at the right time.
- Have a shower or warm bath to wind down. This will give you a chance to relax before you head to bed. But make sure you give your body a chance to cool down afterwards – you may struggle to fall asleep quickly if you are too warm.
- Try meditation, visualisation or breathing techniques such as breathing in through your nose for four counts and out of your mouth for eight.
- Make sure you choose a comfortable sleeping position. Consider using a pillow to give your body support where needed. For instance, if you’re a side sleeper a pillow between your knees could give you extra support.
- If you’re really struggling to switch off, you may find that reading a book or listening to a soothing podcast or music helps to switch your brain off from the thoughts going around it.
If you’ve been wondering how to fall asleep quickly, hopefully we’ve given you some ideas. By preparing your mind and body for sleep, and creating a soothing sleep environment, you’ll be giving yourself the best possible chance to fall asleep fast and enjoy the kind of quality sleep that will allow you to wake up feeling refreshed.
If you are looking for more ideas to help you sleep better at night naturally, visit our Sleep Health & Advice hub