I have struggled with insomnia for so many years. I don’t think I have consistently slept well since before I had children. Over the years I have tried many supplements and essential oils for sleep and my body just laughs. Can you relate?
If you struggle with insomnia as well, read about 7 things that have helped me to sleep better at night.
My routine is pretty simple and as long as I stick to it, I can typically fall asleep in a short amount of time. If I stray or stay up too late, I somehow miss my window of opportunity to fall asleep. The things I have added to my routine are what seals the deal for me though. Here’s how my bedtime routine plays out.
Keep the same bedtime
I start my bedtime routine at the same time every night. Yes, I want to stay up with my husband, but I know what a lack of sleep will do to me the next day (and so does he!), so I opt to keep on track with this at all costs. I remember being a kid and telling myself that when I was an adult I would stay up as late as I wanted to. How I wish that were true!
Hitting the hay at the same time each night
Promptly at 10:30 I prepare for bed. I get dressed in my pajamas, wash my face, brush my teeth and then proceed with the rest of my nightly routine. Those who know me understand what a punctual person I am and it is no different with my bedtime. Maybe I fear I will turn into a pumpkin if I fall off track?
Epsom salt bath
I am not one who loves baths as I get bored sitting in the tub. I try to read, but keeping my book from getting wet aches my shoulders. I have used this time to help get my body to wind down and learned that even a 15-minute warm bath with epsom salts and lavender essential oils is helpful to get me in a more restful state of mind. I like to play soft instrumental music and have dim lights and use this time to pray. Music with lyrics just makes the songs stay with me all.night.long.
Magnesium for better sleep
I have tried a few different types of magnesium and some have upset my stomach the next day. Now I use a homemade whipped magnesium lotion. My friend Tiffany sent me some in a tin once and it was amazing. You can add essential oils to it that are known to have a calming effect too, the combination I love is: Ylang Ylang, Orange, Tangerine, Patchouli, and Blue Tansy. Of course you could just add lavender.
I like the Dr. Josh Axe website and have found a lot of the information he posts useful. He has a great article on the benefits of using magnesium oil, along with a simple recipe.
Reading before bed (not on a screen!)
Many people I know start their day off in God’s Word. I am the opposite, once I slip into bed the first thing I do is grab my Bible. Reading before bed can be calming, but don’t make the mistake of reading something suspenseful, otherwise your mind might get sidetracked on what will happen next while you are trying to drift into dreamland (or you will inadvertently stay up all night reading!). I use The One Year Chronological Bible or my regular Bible and try my best to read through several chapters a night.
I grab my ninja hat, AKA Nitehood
This is my newest tool in the box and I LOVE it so much. In the past I have used sleeping masks, but they are either not comfortable, let light in, or slide off my head in the night (apparently I toss around a lot!). After reading a blog post about insomnia tricks, I stumbled upon the Nitehood.
Do you have insomnia? Does your body go into super sensory mode when you sleep, causing everything to wake you? GET THE NITEHOOD!
My husband calls it my ninja hat. I call it my answer to sleep. Be warned though, it doesn’t arrive as quickly as Amazon. I think I waited about 12 days for it to hit my mailbox because it ships from Canada. Just trust me…you are welcome.
Use promo code: HOMESCHOOL15 for 15% off – trust me, you will love it!
I had no idea there were so many earplugs on the market OR that I had small ear canals. I have struggled to find comfortable ear plugs that fit my ear canals that actually kept out the noise.
I have settled on Macks Silicone Earplugs. I get them for under $4 on amazon and it includes 6 pairs, which lasts me about 2.5 weeks. I don’t like to wear my ear plugs more than 2-3 times each before grabbing a new pair. Before the Nitehood, even these earplugs would ease out of my ears a bit and I would wake to my husband’s BREATHING. Pushing them back into place proved to be a disturbance in my sleep.
The Nitehood keeps my earplugs firm and snug. Gosh, I love that thing!
Find the right pillow
I could probably list out a dozen or so pillows I have spent countless hours reading reviews on before succumbing to making a purchase. I have expensive pillows in all my closets (and have even returned quite a few!). I have neck trouble, so I might be a little more pillow-needy than the average person. I have found one pillow that I loved so much I bought two of, one for my head and one to use as a body pillow. It makes me feel like I am cuddled in clouds.
My husband raises his eyebrows at me when he sees me adjusting my pillow. I must look really odd taking stuffing out and then putting it back in, but my memory foam pillow is adjustable to fit my exact needs. I am used to my husband looking at me with the eyes of wonder trying to figure out what crazy thing I am trying next.
At the time of my posting this pillow has over 17,000 reviews on Amazon, ranking 4.3 out of 5. I haven’t found a better ranked pillow according to customer reviews.
One new thing that has helped me to relax prior to bed is doing some yoga stretches in the evening, after dinner but before bed. If you are uncertain about yoga, hear me out. I was avidly against it for a long time thinking that it was some New Age weirdness that had a lot of spiritual implications and have heard some even call it a “religion.”
After suffering for a few years with intense neck pain and trying every alternative method I could find for relief, I investigated some yoga stretches for the neck and shoulders. I found a great Christian yoga YouTuber and have enjoyed her videos.
To read more check out my recent post “Can Christians do Yoga?”
Carrie is the owner & operator of Homeschool Giveaways. She has been homeschooling for over a decade and has successfully graduated her first homeschooler. She has two girls and works side by side at home with her awesome husband. She has been saved by grace, fails daily, but continues to strive toward the prize of the high calling of being a daughter of the Most High God.