Sleep hygiene and sleep tips
ObstreperousDogey 18 May 22 13:35
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Has anybody here gone from being a terrible sleeper to a great sleeper? If so, what did you do? Obvious solutions encouraged. For example, I know I should go to bed earlier but I struggle to do it, as I never feel tired until very late, so I really need some very forceful self-regulation to achieve this. I would benefit from some tips just to get to bed by a certain time.

Also, do you have any sleep or tiredness “hacks”, eg you’re at work, slumping at your desk, unable to focus. You’ve already had too much coffee. What do you do to give yourself a kick-start?

I wish I had but I do have times when I get better sleep.

1. When I am physically tired.  Summer is much better I'm usually out all evening doing shit so I do get tired.

2. When my day has been diverse.  I sleep worse if I've just been at home.

3. When I have walked the dog in the sunshine.

4. I don't drink from 6pm usually.

5. when I have been reading/listening to music in the living room and not in my bedroom

6. When I have crisp bed linen on and have had a long bath

7. when the fooking cat doesn't wake me up.

For daytime slumps, at the moment watering the greenhouse plants

Better sleeping: no alcohol, plenty of exercise and follow the US Marines sleeping manual. 

Please speak to your GP if are you a woman and in your mid-40s.  

- up the physical exercise during the day and if possible do it in sunlight/in a natural setting

- use apps to prompt you to start a wind down routine at a set time every night and stick to it.  Get up earlier every morning to make yourself feel tired

- blackout blinds in the room you sleep in

- no IT in bed - leave your phone etc to charge overnight in another room and use an old fashioned alarm clock if needs be

- take a magnesium supplement about half an hour before bed.  If you like baths, take a bath with magnesium salts before bed

- warming up via a bath/shower before bed has been shown to aid sleep because of the way the body cools down overnight from the previous "warm" state after a bath

- I have found some of the sleep mediations on the apps like Calm or Headspace are helpful.

- instead of watching tv or doing stuff on the computer at bedtime, read a book instead.

- if where you sleep is not silent then use ear plugs if you need them

All the obvious ones - no caffeine after lunch, no booze, keep hydrated, do something strenuous after work but not too late, make sure you change your bedding at least once a week

No phone or other screens for an hour before trying for sleep.  Not even on the supposed "low blue light" settings etc.  I like to read and my wife tends to fall asleep before me, so I used to read Kindle books, but I got round this by getting one of those old-fart reading lights - this one goes round my neck and has a warm yellow setting, so I can read proper paper books without disturbing the better half.


Hot milk and honey.  Total childhood throwback, but it works (maybe for that very reason).


If I'm wrecked in the day, a 25-minute nap (no longer) works wonders.  If I'm really tired, a cup of something caffeinated beforehand boosts the effect (right before, so it's kicking in as I wake up).  But I tend to keep my caffeine down, so this will have more effect for me than someone who habitually slams 4 espressos before 10.00.  Pretty sure there's some science behind the caffeine-and-nap approach, which is widely use by doctors on night shifts.  Obviously a bit harder to nap if not wfh.


Listening to stuff as I go to sleep helped me an enormous amount. Relaxing Youtube videos of people solving sudokus or building Lego sets and stuff. It stops my brain from thinking which is what always kept me awake. Nothing else ever really worked.

What they said, plus:

Eat tryptophan-rich foods, eat more carbs at night and eat dinner early

Make a ritual out of going to bed that starts half an hour beforehand. Have a particular hot drink (I have golden milk or a Pukka night latte), pull you sheets back and spray the pillow with lavender before you undress - doesn't really matter so long as you create a signal to your brain that it's night time.

Listen to something that switches your brain off. I sometimes listen to videos of someone reading in a language I don't understand. Wear sleepphones so you can just fall asleep.

Also, do you have any sleep or tiredness “hacks”, eg you’re at work, slumping at your desk, unable to focus.

Chewing peppermint

Tapping fingers on the desk or playing with a desk toy (stimulating the nerve ends in your fingertips is supposed to help with attention).

If all else fails, 10 minute kip under the desk.

What they said about routine although not sure mine is easy to copy as it involves giving the dog and cat their bedtime treats and refilling the cat's buffet, then letting the dog out, then locking the front door and setting the burglar alarm on the garage and garden store before going back and letting the dog back in and locking the back door and heading for bed.


I was taught this by a psychologist friend of my dad's many years ago, when I had trouble sleeping.  It’s a bit odd, and requires time investment, but it works for me. 

You tell yourself a story – make it a bit exciting, or else you won’t remember it (and remembering is important).  So you’re the hero of a spy adventure, or selected to play for England in a World Cup Finals or given an F1 drive -whatever. And create a detailed story.  And tell it via your inner monologue.

Because it’s interesting, you get in engaged and switch off all the other stuff in your head.  If you count sheep, your mind wanders.  And do it every night.  The same story – no variations, if you can avoid it.  It allows your brain to focus on this one thing, to the exclusion of all others. After a few weeks, the story is still interesting, but not exciting.  And you rattle through it, and zone out – excluding all other thoughts.

I find I fall asleep within 10 minutes (before this, it took 90 mins or so).

I used to have huge insomnia issues for years, especially before a day shift (up at 0500). I would always have a really active brain.

I echo Pancakes’ advice. I bought a tiny MP3 player and loaded it with books I was familiar with so didn’t have to concentrate on such as Terry Pratchett, Harry Potter and Hitchhiker’s Guide and put it on a 45 min sleep setting. Solved, literally, overnight. 

My daughter had insomnia too and despite being only just 12 had for about 5 years rarely got to sleep before midnight (went to bed between 8 and 9 and lay there bored for hours). After much nagging of my wife I persuaded her to allow cjette to try the MP3 player and, again, solved it overnight.

I wear soft in-ear buds, she wears full-on headphones but if you can put up with either of those it might help.

Impossible to advise based on the info given thus far

Sleep disorders are sexed - many more women are known to suffer from them, and the pathophysiology can be complex, since the sleep-wake system is complex

A sleep disorder can be a primary disorder or comorbid disorder, and can be accute or chronic

Go to a sleep specialist, and let them run tests and psychological evaluations They may send you for further psychological evaluations

Most people do not seek help from a sleep specialist, despite the prevalence of sleep disorders Be ready and willing to make radical lifestyle changes to try to get to the bottom of what's going on in your body

Avoid the following for a good night's sleep:

- Huge lines of cocaine just before bed

- Filling your bed with crisps and squirrels

- Listening to Death Metal at maximum volume

- Pneumatic drills

one of those old-fart reading lights - this one goes round my neck and has a warm yellow setting, so I can read proper paper books 

do you have more info or a link pls? 

Have you considered having kids?

I used to never get to sleep.

Post kids I can sleep anywhere, any position, for as long or as short as is available.

I get far less sleep overall but I never have a problem falling asleep.

So yeah, sprog up. I hear pregnant people sleep a lot as well.