Getting to Sleep and Staying Asleep

Before seeking medical help for "insomnia", take care of the following.

  1. Reduce caffeine intake. Definitely no caffeine after 3pm
  2. Reduce alcohol intake.
  3. Remove screen technology from the bedroom. Use software that reduces blue light after dark.
  4. Reduce bedroom temperature (ideal: 17 degrees C.) May require lighter nightwear and bedding.
  5. Establish regular bedtime, even on weekends.
  6. Go to bed only when sleepy
  7. Avoid early/mid-evening naps (e.g. falling asleep on couch while watching TV)
  8. Never lie in bed awake for a significant time period
  9. Remove visible clock faces from bedroom (can create clock-watching anxiety)
  10. Finish workouts at least 2 to 3 hours before sleep. (Exercise generally will improve sleep. Good sleep will powerfully improve exercise)

Learn to mentally decelerate before bed to reduce anxiety-provoking thoughts at night. For this, the treatment method is "CBTi", i.e. "Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia".

If having difficulty sleeping at night, avoid daytime napping. (But if sleeping well, a daytime nap is a great benefit)

(Avoid sleeping pills. But please don't change medication suddenly. And don't change medication based on something you read at — seek medical help first! But equally, if your doctor is twirling an Ambien pen while she talks please switch doctors.)


Advice is from the book "Why We Sleep" by Matthew Walker. (I can't recommend this book highly enough)