14+ Tips for The Best Night’s Sleep

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14+ tips for the best night's sleep by Wardrobe Oxygen

I’m writing this post about how I’ve figured out how to get a good night’s sleep at 3 am. It’s because I didn’t follow my tips for the best night’s sleep and am paying the price. But heck, my mistake inspired me to write this post, so it’s not all bad, right? Here are some of the issues I’ve dealt with regarding falling asleep and staying asleep, and how I have resolved them.

My Sleep Struggles

I recently turned 46 and for the past few years, have struggled with sleep.

  • I am exhausted but by the time I change and wash my face and brush my teeth, my mind is wide awake, and I struggle to go to sleep.
  • I go to bed freezing, but later wake because I am overheated and sweating. I also deal with the occasional wake me in the middle of the night hot flash.
  • I wake up at 3 am, almost by clockwork. It’s an instantaneous wake, as though an alarm went off and it’s nearly impossible to get back to sleep.
  • I’m tense while I sleep. I wake with shoulder, neck, and upper back pain from hunching my shoulders or curling into a tight ball. That tight ball can also cause my arms to go numb, which will wake me up from a deep sleep.
  • Sleep doesn’t feel restful. It seems I go to bed with my mind racing, thinking of my to-do list or replaying the day and next thing, the alarm is going off and I still have those same thoughts in my head. If it’s not a replay of the day, it’s a song (tonight it’s “Don’t Lose My Number” by Phil Collins).

Can you relate to any of these sleep issues? If so, keep reading. I hope what I found to solve my sleep issues may also help you!

My Tips for the Best Night's Sleep

Below I share categories of ways I have changed my routine, diet, and processes for going to sleep and staying comfortably asleep all night. I also share some products, apps, and other tips for the best night's sleep I've had in years.

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Create a Bedtime Ritual

This is something that I have done for years, but with the ‘demic I sort of got out of habit. But by having the same bedtime every night, getting ready for bed at the same time, having a process, it really gets my mind in the sleep mindset.

At 9:30 it’s time for my kid to get ready for bed; while she gets ready, I get ready. I change into my pajamas, floss and brush, and I’ll wash my face and apply any treatment or serum. Then I meet my kid in her room where we may read for a bit or talk until it’s lights out.

I then head to my room where I apply moisturizer over whatever else I put on my face, and head to my nightstand where I apply the rest of my bedtime products (cuticle oil, hand cream, lip balm, and an oil to pat over my face and collarbone), and take my CBD. I can feel my mind winding down as I apply these products, my whole body is used to this ritual and knows what comes next – sleep.

Having this as a ritual means I am also kinder to my face and body by caring for it every night without fail. If I tell myself I am too tired to go through with it all, I end up having restless sleep. It’s worth it to stick to my bedtime ritual.

Control the Temperature

The best sleep products for hot flashes by Wardrobe Oxygen

Temperature has been the hardest thing to figure out when trying to get a restful night’s sleep. I can be freezing when I get into bed, but by midnight I am kicking off the covers (and minutes later shivering). I also have started to experience the occasional hot flash. I have done a few things to control the temperature for a good night’s sleep:

Embr Wave: My husband saw an ad for this temperature-regulating bracelet and immediately purchased one for me. I now wear my Embr Wave every night at bed. If I am in bed reading for a bit and am cold, I set it for 10 minutes on the warm setting while wearing socks. This combination will warm up my body to a comfortable level. Then I take off my socks and set the Embr Wave for 8 hours of cool, which helps prevent the middle of the night wake up in a sweat experience I was sometimes having. Click here to read my Embr Wave review.

Bamboo Sheets: I’ve tried cooling mattress pads, cooling pillows, and sheets of eucalyptus, percale, Supima, and linen. And then I tried bamboo and I am a convert. I have these organic bamboo sheets from Ettitude and they’re awesome. I have the Cloud Pink color which is more like a peachy/blush/glow color. The fabric is super soft and silky, but not clingy and they do feel cool even after lying on them all night.

Soma Cool Nights Pajamas: Being so hot at night, I thought maybe I’d be more comfortable going commando. Nope, I found I was even hotter. Pajamas, if they are of the right fabric, can wick moisture from the body and with it, make your body feel cooler. Just like with sheets, I’ve tried almost every fabric that claims to regulate temperature and nothing does it for me as well as Soma Cool Nights Pajamas. Seriously, these pajamas determine whether or not I’ll wake up in the middle of the night. Good thing they’re cute as well as comfortable; I love the variety of prints and silhouettes. For sizing, I usually wear a size 14 and Soma's size large is quite comfortable.

Bearaby Tree Napper Blanket: My husband bought a weighted blanket several years ago and was instantly in love. I have tried his blanket but I got overheated, but loved how the weight helped me fall asleep faster and experience deeper sleep. Looking for something that would provide the weight without being a sleep sauna, I found Bearaby. Bearaby's Tree Napper is made from cooling eucalyptus and is a loose weave making it a summer-friendly weighted blanket. It’s small, like it will fit one body not rolling around a lot, but it’s just the right amount of weight and size to help me sleep soundly without overheating. It also helps me not be that sleeper rolling around a lot. I've been intrigued by Bearaby's Sleeper, which comes in three sizes and is also made from eucalyptus.

Quiet the Mind

The issue I deal with most is an overactive mind. I will wake with a start at 3 in the morning because I remembered something I forgot to put into a blog post, rehashing a conversation with a friend, or thinking about that coming day’s tasks. Going to bed, I can think of all the things I need to do, and I seem to find inspiration just as my head hits the pillow. I’ve tried a lot of different tactics, these are what work for me:

  1. Stay away from the phone: This is easier said than done when your phone is your business. But what I have started doing it stay off as much as possible from 8 pm until bedtime. I will reply to a text from my family or closest friends, and I will do a quick check of DMs and emails once an hour or so if I have a campaign that is time-sensitive, but that’s it. It's hard to do, but when I don't scroll through Twitter while brushing my teeth, I have a much better night's sleep.
  2. CBD: I started using CBD a few years ago to reduce inflammation and aches. It helped with my lower back, which has been problematic since a teen and also helped with workout recovery. I learned it also helped me with staying asleep. I started taking CBD drops at bedtime and it would help me fall asleep, but I was looking for something to help me stay asleep. When I switched to softgels, which are slower release, I found it helped me stay asleep and helped keep those middle of the night hot flashes at bay. I use Equilibria CBD; click here to read my Equilibria CBD review. If you'd prefer to smoke CBD (yes that's a thing, no it doesn't get you high, and yes it's legal), I shop Tweedle Farms.
  3. Guided Meditation: I took meditation classes, paid for apps, saved binaural beats playlists on YouTube and Spotify, but none really helped me sleep. Surprisingly, the one thing that has helped is guided meditations on the Peloton app. Voice matters to me, as well as security. It made me uncomfortable to listen to a guided meditation from someone I didn’t know as I found on YouTube, and a lot of the voices on the apps drove me bonkers. I think the practical and calm Peloton instructors are the vibe my brain likes, and I feel confident knowing these instructors are vetted and their content reviewed before it ends up on the app. My favorite instructor is Chelsea Jackson Roberts, but there are a variety of instructors and sleep/relaxation guided meditations available from 5 minutes to a half-hour in length.
  4. Noise-canceling earbuds: I bought this Bluetooth headband to comfortably listen to my phone while sleeping but I don’t love it. The discs the audio comes out of aren’t on the sides but more like on my temples, and there’s the big battery pack/power button thingie either in the middle of my forehead/over one’s third eye (if you believe in that) or else at my nape pressing in as I am on the pillow. My husband got me the Jaybird Vista waterproof earbuds as a birthday gift and I was surprised to also find them noise-canceling and comfortable enough to wear as I fall asleep (I end up pulling them out half-asleep at the end of my meditation or later in the evening). You can’t sleep on your side and be comfy in these, but the combo of the noise canceling/cocoon feeling of the ears plugged up and the guided meditation works well for me.
  5. Journaling: When I do get that idea for content, instead of emailing it to myself (my old method) or writing it in the Notes app on my phone, I now open up a journal and jot it down. I’ve learned to bring the journal with me in the bathroom while getting ready for bed because I often get ideas while brushing my teeth. I don’t write daily entries, but I do put the date on each page, even if it’s a bulleted list or random phrases because it’s still a diary of my mind at that time.

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Adjust the Diet

This was by far the hardest change to improve my sleep, but after doing it, I can’t imagine going back. It really is hard to see the benefit unless you commit to it for six weeks. After that, you can decide if it makes a difference and if it’s worth it to you for a good night’s rest.

  1. Cut out alcohol: When the ‘demic started, I cut out alcohol. My husband didn’t drink so we didn’t have it in the house and I wasn’t going out. I didn’t notice, then I missed it very much, then I felt all self-righteous for being sober for so long, and then it just became life. And now I do have a glass or two of wine a month when I visit my mom, but the times when I do drink, I have a much more erratic night’s sleep and experience more hot flashes, busy mind, and waking up in the middle of the night.
  2. Cut out dairy: When the ‘demic started, I also ended up going plant-based since my husband was plant-based and he’s the primary cook for the family. I was not thrilled about going plant-based, especially when it came to dairy. I love cheese, and no matter how much innovation happens, there is no vegan alternative that can replace a great cheese. But what I found was by cutting out dairy, I cut out a lot of my allergies. I thought they were seasonal; I had allergies all my life and got shots when I was a kid. But by cutting out dairy, I cut out my perma-stuffy nose, a lot of snoring, and erratic sleep from erratic breathing.
  3. No coffee after 1 pm: This is the reason why I am writing this before sunrise. My day ended up being so busy my cup of coffee was untouched at 3 pm so I grabbed it and drank it while driving to a location for a photoshoot. Bad move. I've been playing with the time, wanting to be able to justify an afternoon cup of joe, but really if I go beyond 1 pm, I will be up at 1 am. I don't drink any kind of caffeinated beverage after 1 pm for the best results.
  4. Drink a lot more water: I have a 32 oz water bottle (this one to be exact, and to be exact I have four of them). If I drink at a minimum, two of them on top of my morning coffee, afternoon La Croix, and evening tea, I sleep well. If I drink less than that, I find all sorts of side effects. The first one is I find I am colder before bed and more likely to wake up in the middle of the night hot. Staying very well hydrated during the day means I am not thirsty before bed, causing me to drink water and then having to get up to use the bathroom. My mouth doesn’t get so gummy feeling, and I seem to clench my jaw less when I am hydrated. It also makes my skin look fantastic!

Get the Body Ready for Rest

As soon as I turned 40, it was like a switch was flipped. Not only did I have trouble sleeping, I had all sorts of body aches and pains. I would wake up so stiff and uncomfortable, and sometimes my back, hips, and legs would wake me before my alarm.

We got a new mattress. I began using our TRX after waking to stretch out my spine. This is how I got into CBD in the first place. But what has helped the most:

  1. Stretch before sleep: Again, I need to rave about the Peloton app, which has a variety of stretching classes of all lengths, abilities, purposes, and body parts. As a family, we regularly do a Peloton stretch before heading upstairs for bed. A 10-minute full-body or lower-body stretch makes a major difference in how I sleep. It not only keeps my lower half comfortable all night, but I’ve found even if I do a lower body stretch, I am less likely to clench my jaw or curl up in a tight ball while sleeping, meaning I wake with less jaw, neck, and shoulder pain (and no arms that have fallen asleep in the middle of the night!).
  2. Use a neti pot: I've written before about the benefits of using a neti pot, but I need to share it here as well. Since changing my diet and using a neti pot every evening, the allergies that have plagued me since I was a toddler are no more. But the biggest benefit to my sleep is I no longer snore. While my snoring may not have woken me up, it disturbed my sleep and I wake up far more rested now that I dont snore. I bought this neti pot kit a year ago; I never used the drops but do like the shape of the pot and the jar of salt lasts for several months.
  3. Apply CBD: Part of my bedtime ritual is also applying CBD salve to any parts of the body that are achy or cranky. I swear by Equilibria’s CBD Relief Cream; I’ve tried at least a dozen CBD creams, lotions, and salves over the year and this one is the most effective with the best consistency. I apply it to my cuticles (also a great hydrator and skin healer), my lower back, and depending on how I am feeling and that day’s workout, my knees, and feet.

    If I had a harder than normal Peloton ride or wanting to do a preventative measure before a tough workout, I like Lord Jones and Happy Dance for larger body parts. It is astounding how well a topical product can help with pain reduction, and can also prevent any aches that happen over the night from lying down or being in an odd position.

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quick tips for better sleep by Wardrobe Oxygen

Other Tips for a Good Night’s Sleep

There are plenty of other things I do to help have a better night’s sleep. Using electrical tape to cover any light coming from chargers or outlets, having my phone away from me, regularly replacing the sheets (nothing better than slipping into a bed with fresh sheets), investing in a new pillow (I’ve tried many and Casper continues to be my favorite while my husband is a fan of Saatva)… I am constantly looking for ways to improve my sleep situation.

Over this past year, I have been able to take the time to analyze my sleep, track what I did and what was the result, and how I perform based upon what I did the night before. To find success even through a year of such stress is empowering.

This year, I also was able to see the benefits of investing in a good night's sleep. Better and more sleep means a sharper mind, means I am better able to handle stress, less likely to get sick, less likely to get angry or fly off the handle, makes me want to exercise more, and also has me desire different foods and have fewer cravings. A good night's sleep is also better than any fancy serum for improving the look of my skin!

What works for me may not work for you. But if you’re struggling with sleep, one of my tips for the best night's sleep may be just what you needed to get a good night’s rest. And if you have additional suggestions on how to get better sleep, do share them in the comments!

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  1. Pssst I think this was incorrectly categorized under fashion advice instead of health & wellness. Was trying to find it from your “how the past 5 months have changed me” post

  2. A little late to the party but I have a suggestion that has worked wonders for me. I get up a couple times per night to use the restroom. I found that I would always check the time when I got back in bed and it stressed me out (“Oh no, it’s 4:48am, I only have 2 more hours of sleep…”). Then if I couldn’t go back to sleep my mind would race about how tired I would be if I couldn’t get back to sleep, etc. Now, I force myself NOT to look at the clock during potty breaks. The time doesn’t matter and I need the sleep so I make myself avoid the clock…nothing good comes of it! Hope this helps others…

  3. Those are all good tips from Alison and commenters. Here’s what I’ve found that works for me:
    – Definitely cut down on caffeine, esp. on school nights. I drink a cup of strong builder’s (British) tea in the morning (don’t feel like myself without it). If I feel like drinking more tea after, I either drink a cup of green tea or else, a cup of decaf black tea. I hardly drink coffee now, but was always at most an occasional afternoon-recreational coffee/espresso drinker. Speaking of tea, chamomile can be a great way to wind down too.
    – Been using a white noise machine for over 10 years, since we moved to an apartment facing a busy street. Also can hear other strange sounds from neighbors sometimes — some kind of machine hum or pitch.
    – I also cut down on alcohol significantly since I was trying to get pregnant ten years ago. Started having blood pressure issues, and I’ve found alcohol really worsens it. I still go on the occasional wine tasting day trip or a wine bar with a friend (maybe once every 2-3 months), but I don’t really drink day-to-day.
    – I’ve dealt with serious eye fatigue in the past year and gotten computer glasses, recommended by my optometrist. These also have the blue-light filter.
    – I really try not to be on my phone or my Mac before bedtime, but I often fail. I also got a new Kindle Paperwhite with a backlit screen, so that I can wind down in bed by reading (and at the same time, work on my reading goals). It’s not backlit like a smartphone — it’s a far more mellow backlit, but just the letters are bright enough for me to read without disturbing the hubs.
    – I’m still trying to figure out my pillow situation. I’ve cycled between a buckwheat pillow (which stays nicely cool, but can get a too solid by early morning), a U-shaped foam pillow that they said would be great for side sleeping, and a new Purple Harmony pillow. I do like that it stays cooler than most foam pillows and it really keeps its light, bouncy shape. However, I’m worried it may be too high for me to side sleep. It’s a continual struggle. I’m intrigued by Alison’s description of the Casper pillow.
    – While I haven’t had hot flashes, I run cold into early morning and then can get quite warm then, and then super cold again about an hour before I’m supposed to wake up. Therefore, I switch between a light wool comforter and a thinner bedspread blanket. I had switched from ant alternative down comforter to the wool duvet, as wool is supposed to keep cooler and wick moisture away. The wool duvet is much better — it still gets a bit too warm sometimes, but I don’t get overheated and sweaty.
    – Things I should do, but don’t do. Journal before bedtime (I’d like to adopt Alison’s notebook habit). Stop watching tv or web surfing or worse, online shop, an hour before bedtime.
    – We’re considering re-charging all our devices outside of the bedroom, so there’s no electronic devices there. And transitioning to a subtle alarm clock (no lights at night), probably a sunlight clock.

  4. My 40s have been dominated by problems sleeping. I’m using most of the same techniques you list above and a few more. Like other commenters, I rely on white noise machines and super low dose melatonin. But most of all… getting bright sunlight during the day, and cutting off ALL blue light in the evening. I turn off all overhead lights after sunset, and switch to table lamps with warm color bulbs. I changed my nightstand lamps to full-on orange bulbs. I use apps on my laptop, tablet, and phone to turn down the screen brightness and shift the color. Most important, I wear glasses with orange lenses (NOT the clear “blue blocking” kind) at least an hour before bed. Dorky as heck, but super effective.

  5. I’m 42 and had recently started experiencing difficulty sleeping, irritability, hot all the time (not really “flashes” — just hot), mood swings, nervous energy, dry/itchy skin etc. I thought I was starting perimenopause, but I mentioned it to my doctor and he felt we should have my blood tested just in case. Turns out, I have hyperthyroidism. I had no idea that the symptoms were so similar to perimenopause. I don’t know what the treatment is as the results just came back yesterday and I’m going for more tests next week, but I’m really hoping that sorting out my thyroid will help with my sleep issues (not to mention everything else that’s been off). I thought I’d mention it in case anyone else has similar symptoms/issues. It’s a good idea to get checked in case there is an underlying health issue.

  6. I found black cohosh helpful for hot flashes when I was going through menopause. Also, there is an old Patricia Walton PM yoga video that is good.

  7. I also give a thumbs-up to the sleeping separately from your partner. My husband sleeps like a floppy fish out of water which just made it impossible for me to get a good night’s sleep. So we got a “sleep divorce” – I read that term in an article about how common it is that couples sleep apart. Game changer! Also, I always wear earplugs to sleep. Now I’m not startled by every little creak of the house when I’m trying to fall asleep.

  8. Thank you for the great tips! I wanted to add one more folks might not think of. Check into whether or not your medications can cause issues with sleep. I was taking Singulair AKA montelukast for allergies for a few years. I didn’t realize that was the same time frame when I began having major sleep issues. I’d wake up in the middle of the night with an edgy feeling . My body seemed to tell me it was time to get up for the day. It took a friend posting a link to an article about potential side effects that got me thinking. I stopped taking it and within a few weeks I was sleeping much better. It’s worth looking into.

    1. This kinda supports my theory that we should never get out of bed when we awaken at 3 AM, unless we absolutely, positively need to use the bathroom. The oft-heard advice to get up rather than lie there seems guaranteed to keep us awake longer.

  9. I too have had sleep issues since menopause. I stopped in 2014 and have not slept through the night since.
    The best advice that worked for me was the firmest pillows out there. Believe it or not, two of the Walmart extra firms did the job beautifully. Also no caffeine after 4 pm and no screens in the evening. One added tip: Get a cat. My tuxedo kitten purring next to me sends me straight to dreamland.

  10. I’m glad you brought up the Bearaby Tree Napper again. At first I couldn’t justify the price and when I finally decided to go for it, the papaya color was sold out and has stayed that way. I’ve been corresponding with their customer service and they think it might not come back. 🙁 I don’t really like any of the other colors. I’m wondering if anyone knows how the cotton napper compares it terms of being too hot?? I could get the butternut squash color in that one (though it’s currently out of stock as well so who knows, but there are more choices in the cotton).

  11. In addition to the neti pot, I find that a heated eye mask really helps with allergies/stoffy nose/clogged sinuses (I also have issues with minor blepharitis which is why I started using one in the first place). This is the one I have, I think: https://amzn.to/3pbKj8G

  12. As a fellow 46 year old, your post sounds very familiar. I’ve found melatonin works well for me at low doses (1 – 2 mg). Also would recommend reading Amanda Thebe’s book and any of her work on menopause – she has a Facebook group and is very active there.

  13. I relate to this post 100%. I am 46 and since having kids (my youngest is 12!) I have had sleep problems. I had a hormonal imbalance after having him, and that is how I became convinced hormones and sleep are strongly linked. That’s why I always wake with a start the two nights before my period starts and am up for at least three hours with feelings of existential dread (and that is with no alcohol etc.). I think it’s low estrogen. Anything that aids in keeping my hormones balanced also helps with poor sleep. But you’re right, it’s not only hormones as my husband also often suffers from poor sleep since our kids were born. Anxiety, light sleeping and just plain old having to pee in the night play a role. Sleep is SO important to our wellbeing, thank you for sharing this!

    One thing I didn’t see in your tips that is super important for me is white noise. We sleep with a fan going (which helps cool the room) and a white noise machine. I live in a city, so the street noise would wake me up if I didn’t have this. I used to only use a fan but my husband got a white noise machine for work travel and it is great. It sounds like you’re inside a jet plane when you come in the bedroom but most importantly it works.
    I swear by linen sheets and a linen duvet cover from The Company Store. They are cooling and have just the right texture. I have two sets that I switch out.
    I am a nightgown sleeper, I cannot sleep in pajamas (can’t wear anything on my bottom half to sleep ever) so I wear sleeveless nightgowns which help keep the temperature down.
    CBD – yes! I have tried all the things: ambien, OTC sleep aids, etc. and tried CBD this summer. I use a strong high quality drop under my tongue, from my local CBD Only store and it helps me sleep deeply. I even dream sometimes. And I never wake feeling icky. I also have a CBD vape I keep in my bedside drawer for if I wake up and have bad anxiety.
    Water – yes yea yes- started being better about water again and ITA
    Fiber – I would get an upset stomach at night and it would keep me up. Now I take a mid day fiber supplement and it keeps my tummy more regular.
    Alcohol – Definitely. I am not sober, but if I overindulge (more than 1 glass for me) I sleep poorly. Red wine = much worse than white for me. So I limit myslef to one glass of white wine.

  14. I am an expert sleeper. I know how lucky I am to have this skill.My tips are exceedingly simple but I don’t mean to minimize the very real struggles so many have getting a goid night’s sleep.
    Face your clock or watch away from you so you cannot see it from bed.
    Having a bedtime ritual and same bedtime are crucial. I go to bed around the same time and read (for pleasure only) till my eyes droop.
    Next, I get into my comfiest position.Then I relax my hands. Really focus on this.
    Then, so obvious but, close your eyes. Keep them closed. All night.
    Think of something beautiful or a nice memory. Breathe deeply but easily.
    This is really important. If you wake up during the night do not look at the clock. What good does that do? All it can do is make you more anxious.
    Accept that you are awake and close your eyes and just rest.
    Maybe something here is helpful to someone. I hope so!

    1. This is one of my best tips, too! Do not look at the clock when/if you wake up! It produces anxiety, like “why am I awake at 3:13 AM again”? My husband used to like keep a huge digital clock on his dresser — with big red numerals easy to read in the dark, without glasses — I quickly broke him of that habit and we both sleep better for it.

      1. Yes, that’s one of the things I do immediately in a hotel room is to disconnect the damn digital alarm clock radio. I HATE the light from it. Most times, we all use our phones or something else (sunlight clocks can be nice) for alarms these days.

    2. I can’t agree more, Jane! There’s nothing worse than waking up and counting down the hours left until the alarm goes off. Talk about an anxiety producer. I’ve removed the clock and do sleep better for it.

  15. I know a lot of folks won’t like this suggestion but sleeping alone is when Iget my best sleep. My husband snores like a Mack truck with a broken muffler and I found that I was exhausted. I have a watch that monitors sleep and when I looked a a months worth of data on the app it was clear my sleep was not good. I started sleeping in the guest room..what a difference. The app showed that I was getting more REM sleep and I had way more energy during the day. We’ve been together for 45 years and no kids at home so the sex part is not problem ( better during the day anyway;)at the cottage if we don’t have guests I take another room as well…it’s just an issue when we travel ( who is doing that these days?)so always try for a room with a king size bed.
    Again, maybe not the most popular suggestion but it works for us.
    ( yes I know he probably has sleep apnea but refuses to see the doctor about it because he doesn’t want to sleep with a machine so c’est la vie)

    1. I second sleeping apart and I think it’s a lot more common than people discuss. At least two of my close friend couples do this, and my husband and I do it as needed. Whenever one of us has a very early meeting or have to get up for a trip or event he or I sleep in our guest room. Or if one of us wakes in the night, that person will often move to another room (it’s cooler, which is conducive to sleep and a change of scenery helps reset the mind). We also sleep much better when we are in a hotel or rental with a king bed. Thanks for sharing this because it’s important people know that it can work and that it’s done!

    2. I know many couples who sleep apart. When we recently remodeled our home, I expected our contractor to comment on wanting two “master bedrooms.” Nope. He told me he saw it all the time.

      1. PS. I wanted to add that, when my husband and I do sleep together, having separate duvets saved our marriage. No more pulling on covers, with one person making the other too hot or too cold or too exposed or too suffocated. We often cover the bed during the day with one quilt, but at night, for decades now, we each have our own duvet. Heaven! And such a simple solution that radically improved our sleep.

        1. Yes, this too! My husband calls it the “Swedish Blanket” for some reason. He must have read about it somewhere. It’s great.

    3. Nothing wrong with that! Sleep is important and I think if you’re both better rested, that is better for your marriage/relationship too. I don’t understand why people get so judgmental about that. Why would you rather be walking around like a shell of yourself and be all snappy with each other because you’re dead tired and DGAF. Not good for your interactions and conversations.

  16. The point about caffeine hit home for me, and I would urge anyone with sleep issues – even if you don’t think caffeine affects you badly – to try cutting down or eliminating it as an experiment. I used to drink a cup of coffee in the morning and then probably 3-5 cups of regular black tea throughout the day, and I never thought it affected me much. I initially cut down on caffeine because my iron levels are chronically low, and it can interfere with the absorption of iron if you consume it when you have your iron-rich foods. Eventually, I cut down to one cup of decaf black tea a day, and no other caffeinated beverages. Well! The difference was amazing. My sleep was much better – deeper sleep, falling asleep faster and staying asleep through the night – but the biggest difference was actually a calmer demeanor (and I didn’t even know I WASN’T calm!). No more caffeine jitters or up-and-down stressors through the day, which was such a relief.

    A few weeks ago, we were visiting my partner’s family and I had a couple of cups of regular black tea late in the afternoon. That night, my body was exhausted but my brain would not turn off, and I tossed and turned until finally falling into a terrible sleep at 3am! It was awful, and it totally reminded me that something I didn’t even think was a problem affects me far more than I realized. It’s back to decaf for good now! 🙂

  17. What a great compilation of tips and ideas!

    I use a white noise machine for sleep — I started when I lived in an apartment beside a noisy street, and now, I find it helps no matter where I am. I even bring it with me when traveling. As soon as my brain hears that noise, it knows it’s time to sleep. Here’s the model I like — it’s simple, with no bells or whistles, and has worked perfectly for years:


    1. Sometimes I feel like the universe is trying to tell me something. I just had the worst nights sleep ever and I open my email to see your post! I was almost ready to cry trying to accept that waking up completely drenched in sweat and chilled to my core but after reading through your list, I am once again ready to take on my battle with sleep and body temperature control 🙂 Thank you for the work you put into your posts, you are truly helping women <3

  18. I suffered with insomnia starting with peri-menopause and it has continued into my 60’s. Biggest relief for me came with being consistent…no screens of any kind (TV, computer, phone) after 7:30. No food or drink after 7:30. Most important: sticking with the same bedtime. Any disruption in that routine and I’m tossing and turning again.

  19. The cool nights PJs are fantastic! I love how soft they are, and they’re definitely more comfortable to sleep in than my previous old tshirt and cheap cotton leggings combo.

  20. Thanks for these tips! I can’t second the phone issue enough. Put it down and walk away. I’ve been using the sleep functionality of my Apple Watch/iPhone to remind me when to stay off the phone. It has helped.

    Also the alcohol… while some folks made cozy home offices, we built a bar. Something we had wanted to add to our sunroom for a very long time. I find I sleep much better if I don’t have alcohol before bed. A cocktail with an earlier dinner is still okay. But after that, not so much. Oh well. Our well stocked bar looks nice.

    As a chronic illness patient, I’ve learned that a good night of sleep is the best thing I can do for my body. Alas, it’s often the thing hardest to get. Every small detail that can help is always appreciated.

  21. Such a helpful and comprehensive post. My dentist fitted me with a mouth guard for the jaw clenching and I no longer wake up with jaw and neck pain. Really wonderful, I’m going to try some of your suggestions.

  22. Have you written about pillows? Specifically what you like about the Casper & what qualities Saatva has to recommend it? I’m a side sleeper & have difficulty finding a pillow firm enough.

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