Even the best sleepers are struggling right now, and it’s not surprising. There’s a lot of unrest and stress in the world, including a global pandemic. In these times, it’s so easy to turn to a glass of wine to unwind, but does it help or make things worse?
“I think in general, a lot of people are in this state of fight or flight,” New York City-based Joshua Tal, a sleep and health psychologist, told us. “There’s a sense of hopelessness, feeling jaded, I think. In general, there’s a lot of restlessness.”
Clearly, if you’re having trouble getting to sleep, you’re not alone. Tal offers his advice, along with a few products that can help you deal with any sort of restlessness.
If you’re struggling to fall asleep, an assessment of your sleeping hygiene is a good start, Tal says.
“A good assessment to understand what your issues are can go such a long way for the treatment,” he says. “Take a minute to really think about what’s going on and think, for example, about the different areas of sleep hygiene. Like, ‘Am I really that comfortable in my bed?’”
Wayfair Sleep 8” Medium Memory Foam Mattress (starting at $153.99, originally $269.99; wayfair.com)
The top-rated mattress on Wayfair has a patented pressure relief system that has multiple layers of foam for your most restful sleep.
Perfect Sleeper Trelleburg II 12.5” Extra Firm Mattress ($847, originally $1,539; macys.com)
This 5-star mattress that reviewers describe as “perfect for every sleeper” is more than 50% off right now.
Cool Gel 12” Medium Gel Memory Foam Mattress ($229.99, originally $439; wayfair.com)
This well-priced memory foam mattress has 13,000 reviews, with thousands of reviewers noting its comfort.
Tuft & Needle Mattress Topper (starting at $120; amazon.com)
Not quite ready to invest in a new mattress? Try this high-rated knit cover that is breathable and keeps your sheets from bunching as you sleep.
Zen Bamboo Luxury 1500 Series Bed Sheets ($34.99; amazon.com)
With a fair price, over 2,800 positive reviews and a breathable blend of bamboo and microfiber, these sheets can help soothe you to sleep and keep you cool.
AmazonBasics Lightweight Super Soft Microfiber Bed Sheet Set ($19.58; amazon.com)
Customers agree that these sheets with more than 50,000 5-star reviews are “super soft” and “so comfy,” and considering the price point, they’re definitely worth a try.
Find ways to wind down
“It’s good to develop a bedtime routine with some relaxing things,” says Tal. “Bath, a shower, meditation, reading fiction, music, nice candles melting. Anything. Anything that would signal to your body, time to relax, time to wind down.”
One thing to avoid? “Wine,” says Tal. “Alcohol can be a big problem for people with sleep apnea. A lot of people have apnea and don’t know that they have it, and when you add drinking to the mix, it makes it much worse.”
There’s also something to be said about blue-light blocking glasses, which have been known to help people fall asleep, as well as white noise machines that can emit white noise, as well as other soothing sounds.
Therapeutic Bath Seltzer ($24; uncommongoods.com)
Wind down with these all-natural therapeutic blends that you can pour right into the bath to help with everything from relaxing before bed to muscle aches.
SoundBot Waterproof Bluetooth 3.0 Speaker ($14.99; amazon.com)
This waterproof speaker is available in five colors and also works with your phone, so you can turn bath time into catch-up time with an old friend.
Bluetooth Sleeping Eye Mask With Headphones ($21.99; amazon.com)
Tune out the world by blocking out light and tuning into relaxing music with this Bluetooth sleep mask.
WoodWick Fireside Ellipse Candle ($29.49; kohls.com)
Amber, vetiver and musk fragrances blend perfectly to capture the essence of a cozy evening fire, which probably account for the 5-star ratings on this elegant candle.
Ellia Imagine Cordless Ultrasonic Aroma Diffuser ($72.02, originally $112.99; kohls.com)
Filling your bedroom or bath with natural scents and diffused light, this cordless diffuser can make any room in the house feel like a restful space.
Sonoma Goods for Life Fresh Bamboo 14-Ounce Candle Jar ($8.49, originally $19.99; kohls.com)
Freshen up your nighttime routine with an aromatic blend of fresh bamboo, jasmine and lavender blossom. As one reviewer writes, “Can’t say enough how fresh and clean this candle smells.”
Lavender & Chamomile Sleep Sachet Set ($28; uncommongoods.com)
Give yourself the gift of relaxation and a good night’s sleep with the natural herbs in these sachets you place under your pillow.
Moonlight Pajamas ($65; nordstrom.com)
While we’re often in loungewear these days, a great way to tell your body it’s time for sleep is to slip into some ultra-comfy PJs, like this set with over 1,400 reviews.
TotallyBrides Personalized Set Silk Pajamas (starting at $20.70, originally $27.60; etsy.com)
Can’t resist a monogram? Try this silky shorts set that has reviewers raving. And though these are marketed towards brides, you certainly don’t have to get married to have a lovely pair of PJs.
Amelia Short Jersey Pajamas ($78; nordstrom.com)
Knit jersey is so breathable and comfortable, so this set is perfect to put on as you’re winding down after a long hot day.
LifeArt Blue Light Blocking Glasses ($16.95, originally $33.95; amazon.com)
These chic blue-light blocking glasses come in a lovely tortoiseshell.
HoMedics SoundSpa Sound Machine (starting at $20.07, originally $24.99; amazon.com)
With this top-rated white noise machine, you can choose from six natural sounds — ocean, summer night, rain, white noise, thunder and a trickling brook — and have the option to set a timer to turn the machine off just as you’re drifting to sleep.
Note: The prices above reflect the retailers’ listed prices at the time of publication.