6. Try taking a melatonin supplement.
We’ve all been there. You start a Netflix binge, and before you know it, it’s 4 a.m. and you need to be in the office in five hours. Because your internal clock is off, melatonin production in your brain is delayed, thus hindering your ability to sleep. Fortunately, you can purchase a natural melatonin supplement to try and reset that clock. Before you do, it’s best to talk to your doctor.
7. Kick stress to the curb.
This might be easier said than done, but try to resolve any existing conflicts, internal or otherwise, before heading to bed. If you’re stressed or mad about something, consider playing devil’s advocate with yourself to calm your nerves. If you and your significant other are in the midst of an argument, attempt to rationally resolve your conflict before you hit the hay. Many have found that writing about their worries in a journal before trying to sleep is a helpful practice. Stress is pretty much guaranteed to keep you up at night, so do yourself a favor and attempt to remove any stressful roadblocks before you go to bed.
8. Take deep breaths.
Slow, deep breaths might sound like they belong at the doctor’s office, but they can actually help you relax. Breathing techniques usually work pretty well in the sleep department.
9. Wiggle your big toes and count backwards from 1000.
This is by far the goofiest thing you’ll ever hear, but it works. I had crippling insomnia issues for years, and finally learned this trick from a yogi friend of mine. Get into bed, close the blinds, turn off the lights, and slowly wiggle your big toes while counting backwards from 1000 in your head. This technique can help you get into a meditative mindset.
10. Take part in a sleep study.
Talk to your physician about a sleep study. There’s likely a medical center near you that will help you find out exactly why you’re not sleeping. All you need to do is spend a night or two in their comfortable facilities hooked up to a series of machines. Doctors monitor your progress from another room. Before you commit to a given sleep center, be sure that their physicians have practices in place for evaluating insomnia. Some sleep centers focus on issues like sleep apnea and treat insomnia as an afterthought, which won’t help you.
If you’re still having persistent problems with sleep, it is best to consult a doctor before you introduce any new methods to your sleep routine. If you have an excess amount of stress keeping you awake, consider speaking to a mental health professional to learn more about living a stress-free and restful life. In the end, any positive measures you take will only help you reach your goal of a good night’s sleep.