If you’ve ever had a hard time sleeping, you’ve surely wondered how to fall asleep faster (assuming you don’t have early signs of bed bugs which can make it harder to sleep).
Did you know you’ll spend about 26 years of your life sleeping? But if you spend hours each just trying to fall asleep that could add up to 5-10 years of your life just trying to fall asleep! Yikes!
Getting good sleep is probably the most important thing you can do for your health. It restores, rejuvenates, re-energizes, and cleanses the body, getting you ready for the next day.
But millions of people (maybe yourself included) spend hours each night just trying to fall into dreamland. Laying there in the dark, tossing and turning, mind racing. Going to sleep has become a chore instead of a welcome retreat. One more thing to do instead of something to enjoy.
This is not only a giant waste of your time, but it can severely affect your health. In the short term you’ll be less focused, have a worse mood, and be more forgetful. But in the long term this can lead to weight gain, heart attack, stroke, dementia, hypertension and more.
So, to save you from a lifetime of bad sleep and potential health problems, we put together the most comprehensive list online of things you can do NOW to fall asleep faster – like sleeping on the Nuzzle Pillow.
Enjoy the list, and let us know in the comments if any of them worked for you!
Below we’ve compiled a list of every sleep hack, trick, and tip known to man to help you fall asleep faster. We scoured the deepest corners of the web to find the latest scientific approaches on how to fall asleep fast, and some not so scientific approaches. Some of these sleep hacks will work for some, some of these will work for others. Either way there should be at least one in here that will help you fall asleep faster!
Our recommendation is to combine many of the tips below to put yourself in a deep restful state before bed, and to optimize your bedroom into a sleep sanctuary.
When you wake up early you’re going to be tired earlier in the night, and if you get up at 6:30, you won’t be rolling around in bed trying to fall asleep at midnight 17 and a half hours later. Greet the morning sun, which brings us to our next tip…
Studies show that when you expose yourself to 15-20 minutes of full spectrum morning light, your body produces more serotonin, which not only helps you later in the evening to fall asleep, but it improves your mood throughout the day. It also helps set your circadian rhythm to help you get up earlier and fall asleep at a reasonable hour.
When you workout you strain your body, and in order to recover your body will require more sleep. So naturally, if you workout during the day it will be much easier to fall asleep at night because your body will be begging for some rest. Studies have also found that exercise helps patients with insomnia fall asleep at a similar rate to sleeping pills. But make sure you don’t workout at night because this will jack up your hormones and make it hard to fall asleep for a few hours after your workout.
Taking a cold plunge, or a cold shower lowers your body’s core temperature, which naturally boosts your body’s melatonin production. The melatonin dump after a cold plunge has an incredible calming effect.
Ambient light in your room when you’re trying to sleep can make it harder to fall asleep and get deep sleep. The darker your room the better. So getting rid of any light that’s coming in from outside, like street lights, cars, sirens, neighbor’s flood lights, a full moon… Block it out for the deepest sleep.
Alarm clocks put out way too much light at night. Like we mentioned above, you want your room to be as dark as possible. No alarm clocks as they lite up the room and can make it harder to drift off.
This is a breathing technique that is supposed to calm you down and relax you so you can fall asleep faster. You spend 4 seconds breathing in, hold your breath for 7 seconds, then release that breath for 8 seconds. Do it again 3 more times and you should be in a deeper state of calm ready to fall asleep fast.
The more light in your room you can eliminate the better. Someone recommended getting black electrical tape to even cover the LED light on the smoke alarms in your bedroom (don’t cover the smoke sensors, obviously). It may not seem like a lot, but when your room is pitch black, and that’s the only light that’s on, it makes a huge difference in how you sleep.
Any buzzing, chiming, or lighting up of a cell phone when you’re trying to fall asleep will totally reset the process, and make it even harder. Especially when you’re half asleep and it happens it can be super frustrating. So put your phone on “bedtime mode” or “do not disturb” mode for the best sleep possible.
Oftentimes if you let your pets sleep on the bed with you, they move, make noises, or heat up the bed. All things that can keep you awake. If this is the case, kick them out. The last thing you need is your pet making it harder to fall asleep.
To fall into the deepest sleep possible you need your room to be chilly. Shoot for 68 degrees fahrenheit. If your room is too hot you will have a really hard time falling asleep.
If you have to be on your devices at night, wear blue light blocking glasses. Blue light is something you get naturally from the sun during the day, and it tells your body to not produce melatonin because it’s daytime. The artificial blue light from your devices is stopping your melatonin production at night when you need it most to fall asleep. So put on blue blockers to prevent the stoppage of melatonin production.
When you get in the sauna the heat is not only relaxing, but it’s healing to the body. So any stress, headaches, or sore muscles that would keep you awake go away. And when you get out your body will try to cool itself off. This rapid cooling of your core temperature is what lulls you to sleep. If you have a sauna, or access to a sauna, try it out before bed.
The artificial blue light from your devices will keep you awake and kill your melatonin production that’s so necessary for sleep. To allow your body to produce natural melatonin before bed, stay off of your devices within at least an hour before bed.
If you live in a loud environment, like a big city, or maybe your neighbor has a loud dog, invest in a set of high quality ear plugs. Reducing audio input when you’re trying to fall asleep really helps, since as you’re falling asleep even the slightest noise can wake you up. This is especially helpful if you sleep with a partner who snores. Earplugs can be a great anti snoring device for the person trying to sleep, or if you want to help stop your partner from snoring, you can get them an anti snoring pillow.
All too often people succumb to the myth that one pillow fits all. This simply isn’t true. You need a pillow that fits your sleep style. Do you sleep on your stomach? Are you a back sleeper? Do you sleep on your side? It’s very important to find out which, and then get a pillow that is best suited to support your sleep style. For example, if you’re a back sleeper, you may want to look find the best pillow for back sleepers. You won’t regret it.
Like we mentioned above, if you’re cool you will sleep better. So get sheets that are breathable and don’t make you overheat. This is especially important for those who are hot sleepers, or who sleep in bed with a partner, since two bodies produce a lot of heat.
Getting a mattress that best suits your size, sleep style, and preferences is massively important. You’ll have nothing but bad nights of sleep on the wrong mattress, and will wake up achey and groggy. On the flip side, if you have the right mattress you’ll instantly get comfortable and fall asleep much faster.
Magnesium is such a great thing to take before bed because it activates your parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for getting you calm and relaxed, which is huge when it comes to falling asleep fast. And it helps boost melatonin production which helps you sleep. Add magnesium to your nightly routine.
Another great supplement you can take before bed is CBD. Anxiety will keep you up all night and make falling asleep a nightmare, but CBD helps relieve anxiety which in turn helps you fall asleep faster.
It’s best to do things during the day to boost melatonin production naturally, but if you can’t, a melatonin supplement will really help. Melatonin is a hormone produced by the brain in response to darkness that helps you sleep (which is why light from your devices stops it from being produced). It’s also a very strong antioxidant. So taking it as a supplement can really help boost your ability to fall asleep faster.
Yes, this isn’t just a sleeping myth passed down from Grandma’s generation, there’s real science behind it. Milk is loaded with the amino acid tryptophan, which helps induce sleep by creating the sleep hormone serotonin, which is a precursor to melatonin, which helps you fall asleep faster. So if you’re having a hard time sleeping, try warming up some milk before bed.
Pistachios are loaded with melatonin, and are high in antioxidants. Adding pistachios to your diet may help naturally increase your levels of melatonin.
Eggs are another food that’s loaded with melatonin. Among animal products, eggs are one of the best sources of melatonin, and they’re highly nutritious.
Tart cherries are known to have high levels of melatonin. If you really want to supercharge the melatonin intake, drink a glass of tart cherry juice. Experts say having two 8oz glasses of tart cherry juices in a day can help regulate your sleep schedule.
Fatty fish high in omega-3 fatty acids, like salmon, have been shown to improve sleep and are involved in the release of the sleep hormone serotonin.
According to one study, foods with a high glycemic index, like white rice, make you feel sleepy faster. This may be due to the relationship between eating high GI foods and your body releasing more insulin and tryptophan into the bloodstream which makes you tired. So if you have trouble sleeping, try having a big rice bowl for dinner to help you fall asleep faster.
Goji berries have a bit of naturally occurring melatonin in them which can help you fall asleep faster. In a recent two week study participants drank 4 oz of goji berry juice, or a placebo beverage. It turns out over 80% of the people in the goji berry juice experienced sleep benefits like improved sleep, waking up easier, and falling asleep faster, whereas the participants in the placebo group experienced no such benefits.
Oatmeal, like rice, is a high glycemic index food that is related to tryptophan production, and will naturally raise your blood sugar levels by triggering insulin production, making you feel sleepy. It’s also a great source of melatonin which helps you fall asleep faster. Many people report feel sleepy and tired after eating oatmeal.
Mushrooms are high in melatonin, and can also contain tryptophan, two potent sleep chemicals. So if you’re making a salad for dinner, stir fry, or even eggs, or just want a healthy late night snack, throw in a few mushrooms to the mix for a natural melatonin boost!
Corn is another moderate to high glycemic index food that stimulates insulin, making tryptophan more bioavailable. Remember, tryptophan is an essential amino acid that helps you produce more serotonin, and melatonin – two important sleep hormones.
Chicken is packed full of tryptophan. So if you want to naturally fall asleep faster but you want to eat meat, chicken is a great option.
Turkey is the king of tryptophan. After every thanksgiving meal when you want to take a nap, you can thank turkey. Turkey is absolutely loaded with tryptophan, and if you eat it with a high glycemic index carb, like rice or potatoes, the insulin produced will make the tryptophan even more bio available for your body and you’ll crash even harder.
Eating bananas before going to bed can help you fall asleep faster because they’re loaded with magnesium, potassium, tryptophan, vitamin B6, carbs, and fiber. All of which contribute to the overall quality of your sleep in their own ways.
Eating spicy foods before bed can actually hurt your efforts to fall asleep faster. They can upset your stomach, cause acid reflux, and raise your body temperature… all things that will make it harder to fall asleep.
Although it’s a favorite after dinner dessert, make sure you’re not eating it too close to going to bed. A spike in your blood sugar from a low glycemic index food like chocolate can keep you up or give you jumpy legs. Chocolate also has caffeine which will keep you up and make falling asleep more difficult.
Tomatoes, especially tomato sauce and ketchup, can be a favorite dinner staple. But tomatoes are rich in an amino acid called tyramine, which triggers the brain to release norepinephrine, a stimulant that boosts brain activity and delays sleep. So be careful how close to bed you eat tomatoes.
How often have you ordered a late night pizza because you had the munchies? Welp, hate to break it to you but don’t eat pizza before bed. Like we just mentioned in the last sleep hack, avoid tomatoes, and pizza comes loaded with tomato sauce. On top of that the pizza is high in saturated fat, and people who eat foods high in saturated fat before bed claim to get less restorative sleep. Pizza is also a major culprit for causing acid reflux, which makes falling asleep extra difficult.
Citrus fruits are better left in the morning. The flavor of certain fruits like lemons, actually increases mental stimulation which will make falling asleep more difficult. Plus citrus can be tough on the digestive system and trigger indigestion which would contribute to making it harder to fall asleep fast.
It can take up to 10 hours for caffeine to completely clear your system. So it’s recommended that at the very latest, stop drinking caffeine 6 hours before bed. This at least gives it some time to clear your system by at least half, so you can try to fall asleep. But ideally if you’re going to bed at 10pm, stop drinking caffeine by noon.
Drinking alcohol before bed may give you the false impression it makes it easier for you to fall asleep, but this is a myth. The reality is the quality of sleep you get is dramatically worse. Alcohol makes you wake up multiple times throughout the night, avoid tapping into the restorative REM sleep cycle, and increases your heart rate. Then the next morning and day you feel awful, less rested, and moody. Cut the alcohol before bed.
Taking a warm bath before bed can help increase your natural levels of melatonin because when you get out of a hot bath your body naturally tries to cool itself down to a normal temperature. It’s this cooling process that triggers melatonin production and makes you tired so you can fall asleep faster.
Sleep apps are designed to do one thing, and that’s get you to sleep faster. Many of them will track your sleep quality and give you tips on how to increase the quality of your sleep based on your sleep analytics. Based on this customized feedback you can tailor your sleep routine, bedtime, dinner schedule, etc. to make falling asleep faster super easy.
Listening to sleep music in the background can be a great way to help your mind drift off. There are thousands of sleep music channels online and on streaming platforms like Spotify that you can use to help you fall asleep faster. You can even set a timer so they turn off automatically after an hour.
Playing a mental word game in your mind is a great tactic if you’re laying in bed awake, trying to fall asleep. One in particular we found goes like this: Think of an emotionally neutral word that you can visualize, like “tree.” Imagine the tree. Then think of another word that starts with T, and visualize it, and keep doing this until you get tired. If you run out of ideas for the first letter, start using the second letter of the original word. This beats counting sheep.
Pleasuring yourself is one of the tried and true ways of falling asleep. In fact, self pleasure releases a hormone called prolactin. Prolactin is released into the body after orgasm and is a powerful sleep inducer. It helps induce sleep by helping the body to create serotonin, which in turn helps you fall asleep fast.
If you’re having a hard time falling asleep at night, you’ll most likely be tired during the day and be tempted to nap. Don’t do it. This could actually make your insomnia worse and put you on a bad sleep schedule. It’s best to just push through and then you’ll be able to fall asleep quickly at night.
Being on a sleep schedule is super important. Getting your body into a rhythm of when it’s time for bed will help you fall asleep much easier than if you try to go to bed at sporadic times of the night. Make sure you try to wake up at the same time every day too.
Stress can be a huge reason you’re having trouble falling asleep at night, so try practicing yoga, meditation, and mindfulness to calm yourself down and destress. You may find this helps with falling asleep.
Aromatherapy can help soothe you and calm you down, setting the mood to help you relax, calm down, eventually lull off into dreamland.
Reading a book before bed will give your mind something to focus on, and will make your eyes tired. It’s one of the best ways to eventually help yourself fall asleep fast.
Many say that journaling before bed is a great way to fall asleep faster. Maybe this is because it allows you to take everything that’s stressing you out out of your head and put it onto paper, or maybe it’s because the act of writing gives your mind something to focus on which helps you fall asleep faster.
Try using a weighted blanket. Weighted blankets relieve anxiety because they make you feel secure, and relieves anxiety. It sounds funny, but it actually works. I can’t go to sleep anymore without my weighted blanket on top of me.
Putting your legs above your head for 5 to 10 minutes before bed is said to help you fall asleep because the blood moves more towards your head creating better circulation, and relaxing your neck and back muscles. This all helps you sleep faster.
Nicotine from smoking is a stimulant and will keep you awake and make falling asleep harder. Try to avoid smoking in general, but if you do it, try to avoid it before bed.
White noise machines wash out any random noises you might hear that could startle you and wake you up. It also creates a nice background noise so your mind can wander and focus on sleeping.
Try replacing the lights on your nightstand with red lights. Red light is the lowest frequency and doesn’t disturb sleep like other high frequency lights, blue being the highest and worst for sleep. This way you can stay up and read, or walk around the room and see while your body is able to wind down for better sleep.
58. Use A Nasal Dilator
Using a nasal dilator allows you to fall asleep faster when you have a stuffy nose. Congestion can make it harder to fall asleep, and can certainly make it so you don’t sleep as well, causing you to snore and breathe through your mouth. That’s why investing in a nasal dilator is so helpful. It opens your nasal passageways and allows you to fall asleep faster, and sleep deeper through the night, breathing easily through your nose.
Falling asleep faster has many benefits. It allows you to get more restorative sleep, which in the long run helps you avoid serious health problems associated with insomnia, like dementia, stroke, hypertension and more.
Being able to fall asleep faster helps you get up easier in the morning, and improves your mood the next day. Finally, falling asleep faster is so beneficial because you don’t waste your most precious resource – time. You fall asleep faster and don’t lay in bed awake wasting time.
To wrap things up, there are A LOT of things you can do to hack your sleep to fall asleep faster, sleep better, and wake up feeling refreshed. There are things you should avoid before bed to make it easier for your body and mind to shut off and fall asleep. There are things you can do to naturally increase your sleep hormones. There are bedroom hacks you can do to make your room more conducive to a good night’s sleep. Combine all of these together with a great sleep schedule, and you’ll be falling asleep fast, and on time every night no problem.