5 Ways to Fall Asleep Fast
Bedtime should be a relaxing time. In a perfect world, you’d go to bed on time every night, get a full seven to nine hours of sleep and wake up fully rested the next day—instead, you’re up at 3 A.M. googling “how to fall asleep quickly.”
For many people, bedtime can be stressful. If you’re worrying about tomorrow’s to-do list or fending off thoughts about that embarrassing thing you did in third grade, you’re not alone. The National Sleep Foundation estimates that more than half of American adults experience insomnia at least a few nights a week. If you’re losing sleep over what to do to fall asleep, here are five expert-approved ways to fall asleep fast.
Tips to Fall Asleep Fast
1. Get into a routine
Believe it or not, your brain loves routine. A sleep routine performed 20-30 minutes before bed every night is one of the best ways to fall asleep fast, because it conditions your mind and body to start winding down. Although there is no one-size-fits-all routine, incorporating relaxing activities like bathing, brushing, or reading can help you drift off.
2. Warm up (and then cool down)
Experts state that the ideal room temperature for sleep is between 68 and 72 degrees. One of the best ways to fall asleep fast is to artificially raise your body temperature by taking a hot bath or shower before bed. The sudden drop in body temperature after you get out can help you get to sleep faster.
3. Turn screen time into sleep time
Anything that emits light will decrease the brain’s natural sleep hormone, melatonin. For those wondering how to fall asleep fast, experts say to avoid screens anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours before bed—but if you insist on scrolling before bed, try switching your phone, tablet or computer to “night mode,” or use an app or glasses to filter out blue light.
4. Soundproof your sleep
Are your neighbor’s weeknight parties keeping you up at night? Tuning out auditory distractions is crucial when learning how to fall asleep easily, especially if you’re a light sleeper. A white noise machine is a device that plays calming sounds like rain or wind, and it can help mask those pesky ambient sounds that keep you awake at night, helping you fall asleep quickly. Need white noise in a pinch? Try using an app that lets you choose your preferred sleep sound.
5. Make a list
We live in a fast-paced world. Sometimes, bedtime is the only time during the day that we can sit there and think, which can lead to a flood of responsibilities and worries invading your mind before bed. Writing a quick to-do list for the next day can be reassuring when learning how to fall asleep easier. Keep a notepad and pen on your nightstand, write it down and then forget about it—your to-do list will still be there in the morning.
If all else fails, don’t force it. The more you stress about how to fall asleep quickly when your body isn’t ready, the longer you’ll stay awake. Try to avoid checking the clock every few minutes, and don’t let your mind associate being in bed with staying up all night—get out of bed, eat a small snack or read a book. Habits can be hard to change, so slowly incorporate a few of these tips on what to do to fall asleep. You’ll be a pro at drifting off in no time.