Insomnia is a sleep disorder that affects a majority of the population these days. Almost everybody has issues falling asleep due to stress, anxiety, work pressures, gadget addictions, or other medical reasons. Lack of sleep and lack of good quality sleep both affect the body and mind adversely. Often, people go to bed early hoping to get long hours of good sleep only to realize that even with their head on the pillow, they are not able to fall asleep quickly. How to fall asleep fast is a problem most people want solutions to.
There may be things you are doing in your daily schedule that affect your body’s sleep cycle. Due to these patterns and schedules in your life, you cannot fall asleep fast. Understanding the causes behind what keeps you awake will help you fall asleep faster and catch more shut-eye. In this blog, we also discuss changes you can make to your sleep environment and lifestyle to identify not only how to fall asleep fast, but you can also get a more restful sleep at night.
Significance Of Falling Asleep Fast
Everybody has their own daily time-table which has specific hours for sleep and a certain number of hours of staying awake. Sleep needs of every individual are different, but doctors advise average adults to get 7-9 hours of sleep each day. So, if you hit the bed at 10 or 11 pm every night hoping to get up at around 6 am, it is a good routine, and you can get enough sleep. But, what happens when you are in bed at 10 pm but can’t fall asleep for the next hour or two? This will leave you tossing and turning for a long time and stressing yourself even more. As your time to wake up is still the same, the result is that you get less sleep, which will leave you feeling irritated and sluggish all the next day.
Many people will face this problem and wonder how to fall asleep fast, especially if they are under some stress, unwell, or going through some problems at work or in their personal life or even if they have had a bad day. But, if not falling asleep fast is a recurring issue for you, you need to treat the problem either by changing your daily routine, diet, exercise or in an extreme case, with the use of certain prescribed medications.
Effects Of Good Sleep On The Body And Mind
Quality sleep is as important to your body as is a healthy diet and regular exercise. The body’s metabolism functions well when you are sleeping, and digestion takes place properly as no other voluntary bodily movements are being done. Your body and mind get some well-deserved rest, too. If you sleep well, your body is relaxed, your mind is alert, and you feel energetic to go about your daily routine. Regular lack of sleep can cause serious health problems like arrhythmia, digestive issues, muscle spasms, and even heart disease. At the mental level, this can cause irritation, mood swings, headaches, dizziness, migraines, lowered alertness and cognition and in extreme cases, even degenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Dementia.
What Happens If You Can’t Fall Asleep Easily?
When you keep wondering how to fall asleep fast, you get anxious and try harder to fall asleep by using counting techniques or other tricks people often discuss, which keeps you awake even longer. This becomes a difficult anxiety cycle which does not let you fall asleep easily. And, when you can’t fall asleep in bed, you tend to think about work, deadlines, or begin checking your phone.
Causes Of Not Being Able To Fall Asleep Quickly
If you want to know how to fall asleep fast, you first need to figure out what is stopping you from falling asleep. Is it a cup of coffee in the evening, lack of exercise, a heavy dinner, health issues, an uncomfortable bed, too much noise and light, or too much phone, tablet, and TV. Once you find out what is causing you to toss and turn in bed, you can take measures to avoid it and train your body to fall asleep faster.
Uncomfortable Sleeping Environment
If you don’t have any medical conditions that are keeping you from sleeping well, the most common cause of staying awake in bed is an uncomfortable room. If your room has too much light or noise coming from outside, your body will not be able to go into sleep mode. Even a hard mattress and pillow, a prickly blanket, or a room that is too cold or too hot will keep you awake.
Most people use their phones and laptops or watch TV before going to bed. These gadgets emit what is known as the ‘blue light’. This messes with the body’s circadian rhythm, affecting your sleep-wake cycle. The radiation from these devices is harmful to your heart and brain as well.
Heavy Meals And Caffeine
If you have a heavy dinner, you will find it hard to fall asleep because your body faces digestion issues. Having a lot of coffee in the day or even a cup in the evening or post-dinner will stimulate your brain and not let you fall asleep.
Lack Of Exercise
Regular exercise is required for a good sleep. Your body needs to be tired, to be able to rest well, This is different than just being exhausted due to a busy day, because we are speaking of structured, physical activity. This increases serotonin levels in the brain and reduces cortisol-the stress hormone.
Sleeping In The Day
If you often take long naps during the day, you will find it difficult to fall asleep quickly at night, which will leave you feeling like you haven’t slept enough in the morning. And, you will want to nap again during the day.
How To Fall Asleep Fast: 10 Helpful Tips And Tricks
1. Bathe Before Bedtime
Having a warm bath and putting on comfortable clothes before getting into bed relaxes your muscles and sends a message to your brain that it is time to go into sleep mode.
2. Regulate Your Room Temperature And Light
Some people prefer sleeping in a warm room while some like it cold. Find a temperature that suits you. Sleeping in a cooler room is generally advised for a good sleep. Ensure your room is dark enough to help your body produce melatonin, the sleep hormone.
3. Sleep At A Fixed Time
Having an erratic sleep schedule will mess with your body’s sleep cycle. Sleeping and waking up at the same time every day will create a habit for your body and mind, so you will fall asleep faster when you get into bed at the same time each night.
4. Watch What You Eat
Avoid heavy meals at night. You should opt for low carb, high-fat meals. These are known to improve sleep quality. And, always keep a gap of at least two hours between dinner and bedtime.
5. Listen To Relaxing Music
Music is known to enhance sleep quality. You can listen to some soothing music at bedtime, preferably with a sleep timer on so you don’t have to wake up to switch it off, and it does not play throughout the night, either. That may disturb your sleep later.
6. Read A Book
If you are looking for a pre-bedtime activity, read a book instead of watching TV. But, this should be from an actual book and not an e-reader.
7. Try Aromatherapy
Using different fragrances calms your mind, reduces anxiety, and helps you sleep well. You can diffuse a few drops of lavender oil or damask rose in your room at bedtime. These scents are said to have positive effects on sleep quality.
Having a daily routine of light to moderate exercise can certainly be an answer to how to fall asleep fast. Do not overdo it. The best time to exercise and reap the benefits of it is early morning. Do not exercise late evening. It will put your body into high gear. You can also practice meditation and breathing exercises to relax your mind and muscles.
9. Create A Comfortable Sleeping Environment
Make sure your mattress is not too hard or too soft. A medium firm mattress will help you sleep better and avoid muscular aches. Pillows are important as they have an effect on your neck curve and sleeping position. Orthopedic pillows are better than memory foam pillows. Use a moderately heavy blanket as it will help relax your muscles.
Wear loose fitted clothes of a climate appropriate fabric that allows your skin to breathe and make sure they do not restrict your movements.
10. Don’t Sleep During The Day
Unless you are ill or exhausted, avoid sleeping in the day, so your body gets used to the proper division of sleeping time and staying-awake time.
Home remedies like soothing teas and aroma oils or slight changes to your bedtime routine can go a long way in regulating your sleep cycle and enhancing the quality of sleep. If you follow the tips and tricks that induce sleep, you will understand which of your daily habits are hindering your sleep, and you will also be able to know how to fall asleep fast.