42 Simple Tips to Help You Get to Sleep

Insomnia techniques you've probably already tried but are still worth trying again.

    * See a Doctor

      Insomnia can be a symptom of physical disorders, although for most of us it's the result of tension, stress and anxiety—and of course the more anxious we get about our insomnia, the worse it gets. If your doctor pronounces you a "healthy" insomniac, he might suggest some of the techniques provided here. Or she might prescribe drugs to help you get to sleep.

      We suggest you try all these methods first, and use drugs only as a last resort. The decision, of course, is yours.

    * Take a Warm Bath

      It's a great way to relax your body. Don't overdo it, however. You merely want to relax your body, not exhaust it. Too long in hot water and your body is drained of vitality.

      Use bath salts, or throw in Epsom salts and baking soda—one cup of each. These will relax you and also help remove toxins from your body.
    * Get a Massage

      Have your spouse (or whoever) give you a massage just before going to sleep. If you can convince them to give you a full body massage, great. If not, even a short backrub and/or a face and scalp massage can be a big help. Have them make the massage strokes slow, gentle, yet firm, to work the tension
out of your muscles and soothe you to sleep.

    * Listen to Music or Other Audio

      Play some soft, soothing music that will lull you to sleep. There are many CDs designed for that very purpose. Some are specially composed music, others simply have sounds of waves rhythmically breaking, or the steady pattern of a heartbeat. Some will lead you to sleep with a combination of music, voice and other soothing sounds.  We found one particular system that generates endless combinations of sounds tailored to your specifications.  See more information...

    * Drink Warm Milk

      A glass of warm milk 15 minutes before going to bed will soothe your nervous system. Milk contains calcium, which works directly on jagged nerves to make them (and you) relax.

    * Drink Herb Tea

      If you don't like milk—or are avoiding dairy products—try a cup of hot camomile, catnip, anise or fennel tea. All contain natural ingredients which will help you sleep. Most health food stores will also have special blends of herb tea designed to soothe you and help you get to sleep.

    * Eat a Bedtime Snack
    * Avoid Caffeine, Alcohol and Tobacco
    * Sleep in a Well-Ventilated Room
    * Sleep on a Good Firm Bed
    * Sleep on Your Back
    * Get Some Physical Exercise During the Day
    * Keep Regular Bedtime Hours
    * If You Can't Sleep, Get Up
    * Don't Sleep In
    * Get Up Earlier in the Morning
    * Keep Your Bed a Place for Sleep
    * Avoid Naps
    * Avoid Illuminated Bedroom Clocks


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Selected text from "Insomnia Tips" has been set to music by composer Beata Moon. Her choral piece was premiered in New York by Cantori New York on November 1, 2008.

Insomnia Tips book

Insomnia Tips at Amazon

All the information in the book is already on this website at no cost. But the book is handier and you can give copies to friends and family.

Other Sleep Resources

Some people experiencing insomnia have spoken about the benefits of memory foam in helping them have longer overall sleep periods, and longer REM sleep.
Of course there's the standard insomnia remedy
that everyone knows (although it never worked for us)

    * Counting Sheep

Some insomnia techniques you probably
haven't seen before

    * Sleep With Your Head Facing North
    * Don't Watch TV or Read Before Going to Bed
    * Toe Wiggling
    * Stomach Rub
    * Progressive Relaxation
    * Deep Breathing
    * Visualize Something Peaceful
    * Visualize Something Boring
    * Imagine It's Time to Get Up
    * Quiet Ears

And some new suggestions from readers
who have found these remedies useful for their own insomnia.

    * Not Thinking
    * Smoke Yourself to Sleep
    * Yawning
    * Sex—Alone or with Others
    * Backwards Counting / Mental Computer
    * South, Not North
    * Earplugs
    * Secure Place
    * Bedtime Routine
    * Hot Water Bottle
    * Green Cows—and Other Animals of Color
    * Short Walk Before Bed

Good luck! Have a pleasant sleep!