Garlic gloves in the ear to treat a cold or drinking sprite to cure a hangover – there is no shortage of strange remedies and cures for anything that ails you. Of course, sleep is no exception. There are an abundance of strange tips that are believed to help you fall asleep faster, longer, and get a more restorative sleep.
We typically prefer a comfortable buckwheat hulls pillow and a lilac linen spray to help us sleep, but the choice is yours! If you want to get creative with your bedtime routine, try the following 14 strange sleep tips:
- Eat breakfast for dinner
When I make breakfast for dinner, it’s usually because I need to hit the grocery store and don’t have a lot of options, or I want something quick and easy. I love it, and know many other people do too. Not only does it taste great with minimal prep time, but can also help you sleep. Yep, apparently, this strange sleep tip really works! Many typical breakfast food contains nutrients that can put you in a sleepy state. Eggs, for example, have specific proteins that make you feel tired, and bananas can relax your muscles. So, the next time you want to get a night of great sleep, try some fried eggs and toast with a side of sliced bananas.
- Sleep naked
Swap your pajamas for your birthday suit, and you may have the best sleep of your life! You need to be cooler to sleep, as a drop in temperature signals your brain that it's time to bed. When sleeping naked (and without a warm flannel PJ set), your body is better able to cool down. Additionally, you may find that without clothes you can move around more freely and are more confident. So, the next time you lay on your buckwheat hulls pillow, try doing it in the buff.
- Stand on your head
This is a great one for gymnasts and yogis. When you do a headstand, blood is circulated to the hypothalamus and pituitary glands and detoxifies the adrenals glands. This can put us in a better mental state and reduce anxiety. Stress often keeps people up at night and is the number one trigger for insomnia. When you reduce these anxious feelings, you will find it easier to fall asleep.
- Submerge your face in cold water
This may sound counter-intuitive as many people do this in the morning, but some swear by cold water for a sweet slumber. A Swedish researcher named Per Scholander discovered that when the face is submerged in water, a reflex is activated. This causes blood to flow away from the limbs and to our vital organs, which decreases blood pressure and heart rate. He dubbed it the “Master Switch of Life.” To do this, fill a large bowl or sink with cold water and add a few ice cubes. Submerge your entire face and leave it there for a few seconds. A slower heart rate will help your body get ready for sleep.
- Buzz like a bee
This hot tip is best for those who sleep alone. The act of making a buzzing sound (like a bee) is called “bumblebee breath” and is said to be an effective treatment for insomnia. When you buzz, it helps rid your mind of negative emotions and stimulates serotonin. Get into bed and lay down on your cooling pillow, then start buzzing for about 10 minutes. Before you know it’s, you’ll be fast asleep.
- Blow bubbles
Bubbles aren’t just for kids – they can help you sleep too! According to Bright Side, the repetitive process of blowing bubbles has a hypnotic affect. The act is like a breathing exercise, similar to the 4-7-8 breathing technique commonly used in yoga. Deep controlled breathing with the assistance of bubbles can help you fall asleep. Additionally, it can improve your mood. Martin Rawls-Meehan, the CEO and Founder of sleep tech company Reverie, said, “it also has the effect of redirecting your thoughts from the worrying to the more lighthearted. The act of blowing bubbles reminds us of the joy of childhood, which is a good way to de-stress.”
- Roll your eyes
Roll them like you are giving someone some attitude. It might feel silly, but it is said to help you fall asleep faster. According to sleep specialists, when you roll your eyes, it simulates your eyes' natural movement when you are sleeping. So, you are essentially tricking your brain into producing melatonin to help you sleep.
- Stay awake for as long as you can
It’s like employing reverse psychology to your brain. We experience this often in life – when we are told we can’t have something or not to do something, we want it more. The University of Glasgow conducted a. study that found that people who have sleep-onset insomnia were able to fall asleep faster when they were told not to. It’s called paradoxical intention (PI). The stress of not being able to sleep can make it more difficult to sleep, so instead, try and force yourself to stay up and watch a long movie or read a book. Soon, you’ll start to relax as you don’t feel as pressured and will fall asleep.
- Wear socks to bed
To sleep well, you need to lower your body temperature. A cool room and breathable bedding like a cooling pillow is best, but you can also help trigger a loss in temperature by warming up your feet. By wearing a warm pair of socks or putting a hot water bottle under your feet, you can redirect blood flow. According to Joseph Krainin, the Singular Sleep, LLC president, “the benefit of wearing socks to bed seems to be vasodilation. The best explanation is that warming the feet causes blood vessels to dilate, and this signals to the brain that it’s time to fall asleep.”
- Curl your toes
While you’re wearing those warm socks, wiggle and contract your toes. This sleep-inducing trick is said to help you relax and sleep. Try and curl your toes, one foot at a time, and hold for 10 seconds. When you do this, you reduce tension throughout your body. Sleep experts at the University of Maryland agree this tip can help you sleep better.
11.Listen to ASMR
The sound of someone sketching on paper, food frying in a pan, or the murmur of traffic could help you fall asleep. Autonomous sensory meridian response, commonly known as ASMR, is described as a calming sensation people receive from an audio stimulus. Certain sounds can give a person a tingling sensation that starts at the top of their head down their spine and limbs, creating a state of blissful drowsiness. Not all ASMR sounds will work for you. Listen to different sounds and see what triggers this relaxing effect. You’ll find plenty of options, from brushing hair to cutting the grass or a person eating.
If you have a partner that’s willing to give you gentle tickles, that’s a bonus, but it's not necessary. The sensation of gently ticking your forearms or stomach can help stress melt away and make you feel more relaxed. The repetitive action of ticking, as well as the sensation, will have you sleeping like a baby.
- Pretend your alarm went off and it’s morning
If you are struggling to fall asleep, pretend it's morning. Get up and walk around your house, then come back to bed. Now, imagine you are exhausted and falling back into a deep slumber. This may not work for everyone, but BuzzFeed recommended it as a weird bedtime routine that works!
- Read a how-to book on something you have no interest in
How does a 20 year old book on air conditioner repair sound? If it sounds boring to you, then it is the perfect bedtime read. The dryer and more detailed the content is, the better. This will distract your mind from anything that may be causing you stress. When you are less stressed, you are able to fall asleep faster.
If looking to try something different – give these strange sleep tips a try. But before you do, make sure you have a comfortable, supportive pillow like a buckwheat hulls or cooling pillow and practice good sleep hygiene. This means putting away your electronics, avoiding caffeine, and creating a peaceful sleeping environment.
Sleep is essential to our well-being, and when you suffer from sleepless nights, it can cause a great deal of mental and physical stress. Though sleep troubles are typical, every person is different, and what works for one person won’t necessarily work for another. Therefore, when trying a new sleep tip, it is best to try it out for at least five days to determine if it makes a difference. With these 14 strange sleep tips, you’ve got nothing to lose but a good sleep to gain.