For those who have sleep problems, common recommendations to fix it don’t always work out. If you’re up to trying something out of the ordinary for those shut-eye woes, then this is the read for you.
Drink a glass of water before bed and when you wake up
According to Dr. Salwi Carter, our brains typically have smaller mass due to the distribution of weight and prolonged periods without water when we sleep. This means that we have decreased levels of blood flow, oxygen, and nutrients availability in our bodies. To counter this, it’s recommended that we have a glass of water before bed and another after we wake up. It’s really that simple. Positive side effects include improved mood and of course, better sleep. Plus, you’re more likely to get up in the morning to head to the bathroom if you stay hydrated!
Try the 4-7-8 method
This breathing technique is known to make people fall asleep in as short as one minute. The 4-7-8 method gained popularity as it’s known to quickly reduce anxiety and help people get to sleep faster. Although the science behind this trick is limited, many people have said it’s worked. Try it out for yourself and see what happens!
How to do the 4-7-8 plan:
- breathe in quietly through the nose for 4 seconds
- hold the breath for a count of 7 seconds
- exhale forcefully through the mouth, pursing the lips and making a “whoosh” sound, for 8 seconds
- repeat the cycle up to 4 times
Force yourself to stay awake
This one may seem a bit counterintuitive, but a method called Paradoxical Intention (PI) might work. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends PI, as it “involves remaining passively awake and avoiding any efforts to fall asleep where the goal is to eliminate performance anxiety, as it may inhibit sleep onset”. When you’re in bed, try to stay awake and celebrate wakefulness in your mind. Eventually, your eyes will get heavy and you’re encouraged to keep fighting the sleepiness, until you ultimately drift off to sleep.
Use Candlelight in the late hours
Instead of using artificial lights, try to use natural lighting instead. Oftentimes, the lights in our homes, phones, and TV’s emit blue light. In general, any and every light suppresses melatonin levels, but blue light waves do so more powerfully. As your day winds down, try alternative methods such as having a candlelit dinner and using candles instead of bedside lamps. Not only can it help you sleep better, but you could also spark the romance between you and your partner!
These suggestions are only a few unconventional ways to fall asleep. If you have any bizarre ideas that have worked for you, let us know!