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In a perfect world, we’d all drift off into REM oblivion moments after laying down in bed. However, thanks to pesky things like work stress, anxiety, busy schedules, and noisy neighbors, getting the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep per night can be a tough task.
But getting enough sleep is vital to maintaining good mental, physical, and emotional health, so it’s definitely worth investing in ways to help you get that proper shut-eye time. After all, don’t you want to reap all the benefits of proper sleep, like better brain function, memory, focus, and mood stability? Not to mention the fact that staying well rested can help with weight maintenance!
To help remedy your sleepy-time struggles, here are some great products to make your nights more restful.
12 Items That May Help You Sleep Better
1. Blackout Curtains
According to the National Sleep Foundation, “artificial light after dark can send wake-up messages to the brain, suppressing the production of the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin and making it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.” Blackout curtains offer a great solution to blocking out unwanted brightness and ward off those pesky streams of light coming in from street lamps and passing cars. Get them on Amazon.
2. Eye Mask
If you don’t want to dabble in room redecorating with blackout curtains, eye masks are another way to block out light pollution that can disrupt sleep. This silk sleep mask is breathable, hypoallergenic, and a great product for travel when you may not have access to your other sleepy-time essentials! Get it on Amazon.
3. Essential Oil Diffuser
Studies show that smelling lavender can lead to deeper sleep and a decreased heart rate for a relaxing effect before bedtime. Use an essential oil diffuser to fill your bedroom with calm-inducing lavender before hitting the hay! It can last up to six hours, so you’ll be sniffing that relaxation through the bulk of the night. Get it on Amazon, in multiple colors.
4. Pillow Spray
Another method for utilizing essential oils is with pillow spray, like this lavender and chamomile-infused spray from Asutra. Mist onto sheets, pillows, your body, or wherever else will give you that soothing scent! Get it on Amazon.
5. Sound Machine
Tired of waking up from slamming doors and talking roommates? Block out those sleep-disturbing sounds with some soothing white noise. This is any kind of ambient sound — like raindrops, running water, or crackling fire — that can help you drift off to sleep without being jolted awake by jarring sounds.
6. Melatonin Supplement
Melatonin is a sleep hormone that your body naturally produces in your pineal gland. If you’re having trouble sleeping, you may benefit from taking a melatonin supplement, particularly in cases of jet lag and shift work. Get it on Amazon.
7. Weighted Blanket
Weighted blankets were created to mimic deep-touch pressure therapy, a form of therapy that mirrors the feeling of being hugged, held, or swaddled. Research for this therapy shows that the weighted pressure can help with anxiety and insomnia. If those are two culprits that keep you laying awake at night, then a weighted blanket may also lead to better-quality sleep. Get it on Amazon.
8. Valerian Root
Valerian root is a natural sleep-supporting herb, best used for shifts in sleep cycles, jet lag, and relaxing the body. Some studies have found that it may be a way to help improve sleep quality, as subjects who took valerian products had an 80 percent greater chance of reporting improved sleep compared to those who took a placebo. Get it on Amazon.
9. Calm App
Remember how quickly you used to fall asleep when your parents read to you as a child? With Calm, the highest-ranking meditation and sleep app, you can choose from a wide range of stories read by narrators with soothing voices for that classic bedtime ritual. $60 for annual subscription, or $300 for life! Or, you can also browse Spotify for similar podcasts that are free.
10. A Quality Mattress
If you’ve ever slept on a crappy mattress, you know it’s nearly impossible to get a good night’s rest when you’re laying on something uncomfortable. Selecting the right mattress is different for everybody, but experts suggest a not too firm, not too soft, “just right” level of firmness for quality sleep. Check out this four-layer foam mattress from Casper, with Zoned Support™️ technology for better alignment, and don’t just take our word for it — the 40,000+ reviews have some great insight, too.
11. A Cooling Pillow
It’s important to stay cool while you sleep, as being too hot can cause restlessness and mess with your REM cycle. Help your body stay at optimal temperature with a cooling gel pillow, like this breathable, hypoallergenic, and dust mite-resistant one from ViscoSoft. Get it on Amazon.
12. Knee Pillow
Many people have trouble sleeping due to discomfort, pains, and aches. Alleviate back, sciatic, and hip pains by placing an ergonomically designed pillow between your knees while you sleep! This is also popular among pregnant women who may have trouble getting comfortable. Get it on Amazon.