# Tips for sleeping

Gold Member
before the trip I took, I had a hard time getting to sleep. it lasted 5 days. now, I've been having the same problems for over a week! I'll see a doctor next week. anyway, anyone have some advice? I want something tjat may help me relax and get to sleep.

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
Something that's been working really well for me lately is...a lot of hard work and vigorous excercise during the day so I just am too exhausted to stay awake at night. Really, when I went to Quebec and spent all day walking around on very hilly streets, I slept so well at night and had no problems waking up early and staying alert all day.

Something else that has been working is to focus my overactive thoughts when I'm trying to fall asleep. So instead of trying to fight the fact that my mind wants to wander all over the place and worry about stuff I can't do anything about, I just focus those thoughts to pleasant things. First I try to think about just making every part of my body relax, and then I just picture relaxing scenes, like sitting by a waterfall, and looking at rocks, then watching birds fly away in a big flock...I don't try to focus on one image or thought, but just keep letting my thoughts change and drift, but stick with a general scene, as if I'm just watching everything around me while sitting outside somewhere. It doesn't even have to be realistic, I can imagine a purple sunrise or sparkling birds, anything that's not work or to-do lists, or who I need to call, etc. It seems to work and I eventually just drift from those thoughts to dreaming.

Of course, you could still just be readjusting to the time changes/jet lag from your trip. A week is about how long it should take to completely readjust.

hypatia
One trick that works for me, more so if I know I'm tired, but can't fall asleep.
Pick only one SMALL thing in your room to look at, DO NOT look at anything else. Do not close your eyes. Just keep looking at it, and keep telling yourself not to close your eyes. Even if your eyes feel like closeing..keep looking at the small object.

you'll soon dose off..I hope. Jet lag is horrid!

theCandyman
The best thing to do is try to stay awake, you will get to sleep in no time.

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
theCandyman said:
The best thing to do is try to stay awake, you will get to sleep in no time.
Pick up something like a textbook and try to force yourself to read a chapter a night. You'll be sound asleep in no time.

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
I assume you've ruled out anything obvious like too many caffeinated soda pops?

The trick that sometimes works for me is to systematically tense (for a few seconds) and then relax every muscle in my body. Start at the toes and work all the way to your eyebrows. Take your time with it. You will definitely feel more relaxed when you've completed the whole process.

Grogs
Moonbear said:
Pick up something like a textbook and try to force yourself to read a chapter a night. You'll be sound asleep in no time.

LOL, yes. We had one textbook in school we nicknamed the 'red book of death' (It's Krane's 'Introductory Nuclear Physics' if you really must know.) I never read more than 3 consecutive pages without falling asleep. Of course, that was back in school. The only excuse I ever needed to sleep was that I could.

Homework Helper
Gold Member
Get your lazy a out of your chair other then to scratch it. What I nonchalantly meant to say is do some exercice during the day. This'll tire you up. If you're not tired I suggest reading like an hour or so before closing the light. Never go directly from computer to bed, or from any highly brain-stimulating activity to bed unless your eyes are closing bt themselves.

TheStatutoryApe
What I do is similar to what Moonie does. I grab hold of one of the random thoughts whirring through my head and turn it into a simple daydream. I try to make sure to not think about it much but hold onto the scene. I tend to be able to feel myself dozing and try to replicate that. Ofcourse at first when you try to replicate it you'll probably wind up waking yourself up as you realize that you are actually succeeding. That should go away though. I usually like having background noise. A regular sort of humm, usually I use a fan.

Diencephalon
Oddly enough I had an insomnia bout type thing that lasted a little over two weeks. I was getting 6 hours of sleep every 38-40 hours. Then when I moved to New Jersey, after a lan party, I could suddenly sleep again without a problem. Forcing myself to read 2 calculus chapters worked once, but then it became too interesting. I ended up digesting 5 fictional books in 5 days because of it.

But all the sudden it ends. The problem with something like that is that it made me petrified to try to sleep, because i did not want to go through the strains of trying to sleep.

darkar
Well, there's some website that offer some tips on how to get sleeps too.

Try search "How to get Sleep" in google and u ought to find many of them.

Cheers ~

Sleep Well ~

stoned
go to the corner store and buy some booze. :zzz: :zzz: :zzz:

Gold Member
If I didn't think that the sisterhood would shout at me, I'd agree with stoned!

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
stoned said:
go to the corner store and buy some booze. :zzz: :zzz: :zzz:
Aside from the fact that he's underage, that doesn't really work anyway. In the short term, alcohol is a stimulant, and it takes a while before the depressant properties kick in. Besides, it won't just help you fall asleep, but will shift your whole circadian rhythm (like caffeine will do), and then you end up not staying asleep and having more trouble the next night, etc.

I actually can't sleep well at all if I've been out drinking. I might feel tired, but in a really restless sort of way (about the way I feel when I try to use caffeine to stay awake late and it doesn't really clear the mental cobwebs, just makes you really restless).

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
On the other hand, opiate narcotics work quite well.

Daminc
There are a number of important methods and a few peron ones:

1) Reduce/Stop Caffeine, Nicotine and other stimulents
2) Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.
3) Do not eat a 'snack' before you go to bed.
4) Minimise outstanding 'things to do'.

others:
6) Light aroma theropy sometimes helps.
7) A nice relaxing bath before you go to bed.
8) Soft, relexing music that's barely audible can be effective.
9) Temperature of the room is important.

That's some at least

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
Daminc said:
3) Do not eat a 'snack' before you go to bed.
I actually find a snack before bed helps. If I'm hungry, I have an even harder time falling asleep. A heavy meal isn't a good idea, but that's more from a weight-gain perspective, but a little snack can be just the thing (warmed milk is great).

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
loseyourname said:
On the other hand, opiate narcotics work quite well.
At least for a while, until you become addicted and you need to keep increasing the dose.

Homework Helper
I usually read some book in bed and I always fall asleep. Read something that needs lots of mental activity, that'll drowse you off to sleepyland in no-time.

Gold Member
contrary to what you're saying about NOT taking caffeene, the doctor said to drink tea half an hour before bed.

what do you think?

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
yomamma said:
contrary to what you're saying about NOT taking caffeene, the doctor said to drink tea half an hour before bed.

what do you think?
Unless he meant non-caffeinated, herbal tea (like SleepyTime or chamomile) to help you relax with a warm drink, he's off his rocker.

stoned
Get a girl and experiment with her, they say it is good for insomnia.

Dayle Record
No stressors in the room where you sleep. If there are outside lights that go on and off, get a blackout curtain for your bedroom, just for sleeping, though I like to be awakened by morning light. If you are young and growing and tolerate milk, then a snack of 6 oz of low fat milk and 1/2 of a meat sandwich on whole grain bread, 2 hours before bed time can help, but not close to sleep time. If there are distracting noises in the house then get one of those little fake waterfalls, and run it while you sleep, and train your self to focus on that sound, rather than others.

Teenagers stay awake well past midnight, and want to sleep until noon. This is without fail. Now, researchers say that the end of puberty is marked by a return to a more heliocentric sleep cycle. High Schools across the nation are setting back their intimes to accommodate the sleep needs of adolescents.

There is this work ethic afoot that says making them get out of bed is good discipline, and that is rubbish. Their natural state would be slow in the morning, but energetic late into the night, perfect for harvest activities, and their social lives.

Insomnia for the teenager, early evening insomnia, is the natural state.

Staff Emeritus
Gold Member
i play solitaire on the computer for awhile if i have trouble sleeping.

Gold Member
Watching a very boring movie or studyinga very boring story could be useful. Most of time thinking could prevent you from falling to sleep.

Homework Helper
Gold Member
Dearly Missed
Make a call to your lonely, old great-aunt just before you want to sleep.
Very soon, you'll have developed a strong need to sleep.

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Staff Emeritus
yomamma said:
before the trip I took, I had a hard time getting to sleep. it lasted 5 days. now, I've been having the same problems for over a week! I'll see a doctor next week. anyway, anyone have some advice? I want something tjat may help me relax and get to sleep.
I take it that this is after you returned from Australia where you a basically 10-12 hrs out of sync depending how you look at it.

Basically, I have heard recommendations of staying up all night/all day (so about 30-36 hrs) and then going to sleep at the normal time. I have had to do that myself. You could take an anti-histamine to make you drowsy.

Also, do not eat a large meal or exercise near just before sleeping.

I had similar experiences, particularly when I did back to back trips from US-to-Europe and US-to-Japan in successive weeks. The first night in Tokyo, I woke up at 0300 wondering where the heck I was. When I finally got back to the US, I arrived late morning, so I stayed awake until about midnight then went to sleep.

Gold Member
I was fine for 3 nights after the trip. then it started up again.

Mattius_
I use prescription sleep aids but I think you are just talking about the short term. I can't ever stop thinking, so what I usually do is play a movie on my laptop that I have seen a hundred times and just turn my head away and let the audio of the movie channel all of my thoughts. I know all of the words to the movie so there are no surprises and there is less thinking; I think it kind of puts me on auto-pilot so I can just dose off. I don't know what it is but pixar movies do it for me and I never get bored of them, the plot is always light hearted and stress free.

TheStatutoryApe
Dayle Record said:
Teenagers stay awake well past midnight, and want to sleep until noon. This is without fail. Now, researchers say that the end of puberty is marked by a return to a more heliocentric sleep cycle. High Schools across the nation are setting back their intimes to accommodate the sleep needs of adolescents.
Holy Cow! Does that mean I'm still in puberty?
Since I was about twelve or thirteen (about 13-14 years ago now) I haven't been able to get to sleep at a decent hour and I'm always sluggish during day light hours. Currently I work a swing shift so it doesn't make it difficult for work or anything but I dread ever having a nine to five job where I have to wake up early in the morning. When I wake up that early I always feel sick to my stomach.

Homework Helper
sit on a couch, in a peaceful room with all of the lights turned off and have a drink (if not alcohol, ice water or something fruity) and your mind will naturally start working, although it may not work perfectly, you'll be relatively calmer, you may not sleep right away though. I would disadvise against studying or exercise, both can prolong the insomnia. Try washing your feet with cold water, before and after.

Mentor
GCT said:
sit on a couch, in a peaceful room with all of the lights turned off and have a drink (if not alcohol, ice water or something fruity) and your mind will naturally start working, although it may not work perfectly, you'll be relatively calmer, you may not sleep right away though. I would disadvise against studying or exercise, both can prolong the insomnia. Try washing your feet with cold water, before and after.
For me , it's getting my mind to *stop* working. I think constantly. I watched a program once that showed people that enjoyed things that were "exciting", (sports, taking risks, etc...) had brains that almost flatlined without outside stimulus, they were almost incapable of stimulation from within. Then they showed types that appreciated music and literature and didn't care for sports or outwardly stimulating activity and even in the most quiet, calm moments, their brain activity was going wild. I'm the latter. It's hard to go to sleep when your brain won't stop.

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Homework Helper
Interesting. Well, what usually happens with me is that I eventually lose track of what exactly I'm thinking about, and since it's quite dark (as I had described) and very quite, my brain starts with the "sleep waves" (gotta review my bio) and although I don't fall asleep right away, I'm more ready and calmer. It also helps, like I said, to drink tea, or for me to sip on a glass of cold water.

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