Most of us know the basics for getting a good night’s sleep, but sometimes we have trouble falling or staying asleep. Fortunately there are some innovative products–from heavy blankets to herbal formulas–that can help us sleep better.
For those who toss and turn at night
It’s no wonder that weighted blankets have taken the country by storm. They work for pets in the form of thunder vests so why not for their human counterparts? Weighted blankets mimic a hug so we feel safe and calm. And research has shown them to help those with insomnia, chronic pain, anxiety, and depression. Look for a blanket that weighs about 10% of your own body weight. About $100 on Amazon.com
After spending too much time on the computer
During the day, blue light helps with our focus, reaction times, and mood. At night, it can be disastrous to our sleep quality as it upsets our natural biorhythms. Research from Harvard confirms that blue light at night suppresses melatonin and can significantly shift our circadian rhythms. So, if you’re on your computer after dark, check out these blue blocking glasses, also known as the ‘sleep hack’ for high performers. About $35 on Amazon.com
When street noise makes it impossible to sleep
Street noise, loud neighbors, police sirens. Loud and disruptive noise can make it hard to fall asleep. Listening to the right kind of noise, however, can help. Consider a soothing range of sound waves called ‘pink noise’. Pink noise is a mix of high and low frequencies that sounds more balanced and natural than the more familiar “white noise.” According to a new study in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience pink noise helps you to sleep. This sound machine offers both pink and white noise. About $32 on Amazon.com
When it’s time to ditch your well-worn mattress
If you’re having trouble sleeping your mattress may be to blame. A comfortable mattress is key to sleeping well, according to a poll by the National Sleep Foundation. (They should know.) This memory foam conforms perfectly to the body, and it makes no difference whether we are back, front or side sleepers. It comes rolled up in an easy-to-handle box for hassle-free delivery. $260 (on sale) on Wayfair.com
When you’re not ready to invest in a new mattress
A mattress topper is a great way to upgrade the comfort of your mattress without the effort and expense of replacing it. This top-rated gel memory foam mattress topper was created with technology to provide better airflow, breathability and cool down hot sleepers. You’ll be surprised how big a difference a few inches of memory foam can make. About $100 on Amazon.com
For the hot sleeper who needs to cool down
This pillow is so comfortable you’ll feel like you’re in a 5-star hotel. It provides maximum support and adjusts to fit the way you sleep. The Lulltra™ fabric cover with bamboo is exceptionally soft and will keep you cool throughout the night. And it’s backed by the Coop Home Goods guarantee: if you aren’t absolutely satisfied, return it within 100 days for a refund with no questions asked. About $96 on Amazon.com
When streetlight is keeping you awake
According to good ‘sleep hygiene,’ those practices that help us sleep better, a dark room is right up there. Streetlight makes it hard to relax and fall asleep. These bedroom curtains block out 98% sunlight and UV (darker color works better). They’ll help you a good night sleep or tak that afternoon nap. They also reduce noise and help balance room temperature by insulating against heat and chill. Prices vary, starting from about $20 on Amazon.com
This highly rated sleep mask was created to help us get a better night’s sleep. Light is key to sleep, the darker the surrounding environment, the more likely you are to produce the valuable sleep hormone melatonin which ensures a great sleep. This mask effectively blocks out light, making it ideal for meditation, yoga, travel, napping, and insomnia. About $22 on Amazon.com.
A calming way to catch some quality shut-eye
We’re well acquainted with the calming effects of lavender. This essential oil blend combines clary sage, copaiba, and lavender to do just that. According to one reviewer, “I use this in my diffuser at night. I sleep through the night, wake up when the alarm goes off, no snooze button. I’m awake and ready for the day. It’s really made a difference…Even the dog seems better rested.” About $10 on Amazon.com
Time to slow down and relax
Nuit-Calme (Calm Night) tea is perfect for unwinding after a long day. Enjoy after dinner or before bed to help your body slow down and relax. This French classic contains a blend of linden, chamomile, orange blossom, and verbena, without caffeine. About $15 on Amazon.com
When you need a little extra help
Shut Eye. The name says it all. This soothing blend of magnesium, l-theanine, and chamomile really works. It helps us feel more relaxed so that we can drift off to sleep. It’s all-natural and non-habit forming. About $21 on Amazon.com
To understand how well you’re sleeping
Being able to track and see our actual sleep patterns is nothing short of life changing. We know. We do it every day. Enter the new generation FitBit, the Inspire 2 Smart Watch. In addition to tracking the quality and quantity of our sleep stages, this watch tracks our daily activity, heart rate, and calorie consumption. Knowledge is power. About $70 on Amazon.com
Learn more about sleep
In this “compelling and utterly convincing” (The Sunday Times) book, neuroscientist and sleep expert Matthew Walker examines how sleep affects every aspect of our physical and mental well-being. With decades of research and clinical practice to his credit, Walker explains how we can harness sleep to improve learning, mood and energy levels, regulate hormones, prevent cancer, Alzheimer’s and diabetes, slow the effects of aging, and increase longevity. He also provides actionable steps towards getting a better night’s sleep every night. About $10 on Amazon.com
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This article originally appeared on January 30, 2020. It was updated with current product information on October 29, 2023.
As an Amazon Associate we earn a small commission from qualifying purchases. Any information contained in this article should not be considered a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.
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