How Can I Solve My Trouble Sleeping?

Reviewed on 2/4/2022
Woman lying in bed, unable to sleep at night
Home remedies, treatments, and healthy habits can address your trouble sleeping, such as a consistent sleep routine, ear plugs, avoiding caffeine, a weighted blanket, relaxing music, sleep medications, and more.

Everyone experiences trouble sleeping from time to time. Insomnia is the most common type of sleep disorder and it involves trouble falling asleep or staying asleep despite having adequate opportunity to do so.

Home remedies to solve your trouble sleeping involve good sleep hygiene, which includes: 

  • A consistent sleep routine
    • Go to bed and wake up at the same time each day, even on weekends
  • Make your bedroom a calm sanctuary 
  • Use blackout curtains or sleep masks to reduce light
  • Keep the room cool
    • 65°F/18.3°C is considered ideal
  • Wear ear plugs or use white noise to block outside noises
  • Sleep in comfortable loose-fitting pajamas or sleep naked to help regulate body temperature
  • Stimulus control 
    • Don’t go to bed until you feel sleepy
    • Only use the bed for sleep and sex
    • Don’t watch TV or read in bed 
    • If you are awake more than 20 minutes after getting into bed, get out of bed and sit in a chair and do something boring such as puzzles or knitting (something that does not involve a screen) until you are sleepy
    • Avoid daytime napping 
  • Don’t stress if you can’t fall asleep right away

Lifestyle changes that may help solve your trouble sleeping include: 

  • Avoid caffeine and alcohol, which may keep you awake
  • Avoid exercise before bed
  • Remove the alarm clock
  • Use a weighted blanket
  • Wear socks to warm your feet 
  • Write down stressful thoughts before going to bed so you don’t think about them
  • Calm yourself before bedtime
    • Take a hot bath or shower
    • Listen to relaxing music 
    • Breathing exercises
    • Guided imagery
    • Meditation
    • Practice relaxing yoga
    • Listen to Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR)
  • Night time snacks that increase serotonin may help you sleep, such as:
    • Warm milk
    • Whole grain cereal with milk (avoid sugary cereals)
    • Nut butter on toast
    • Oatmeal
    • Fruit smoothie
    • Cottage cheese

For more severe cases of trouble sleeping (insomnia), other treatments include: 

What Are Symptoms of Trouble Sleeping?

Symptoms of trouble sleeping (insomnia) include:

  • Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
  • Variable sleep
  • Daytime fatigue or sleepiness
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Decreased motivation or energy
  • Forgetfulness
  • Irritability
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Increased errors or accidents
  • Persistent worry about sleep

What Causes Trouble Sleeping?

Trouble sleeping (insomnia) is usually caused by multiple factors, such as:

Reviewed on 2/4/2022
Image Source: iStock Images