3 Tricks to Falling Asleep Without Prescription Pills

Have you ever spent hours laying awake in bed dreaming about sleep? Me, too. Have you ever taken an Ambien and been so tired you fell asleep in the bathtub? No, well I have. International travel and about 20 years of drinking really ruined my circadian rhythm. When I am not on a 6 to 12+ hour time change internationally and I do not have to work, I seem to fall asleep quickly with no worries. But, when I have to work in the early morning, my body seems to fight me. Here are some tricks that I've learned that actually work. 

1. EmergenZzzz

By the makers of Emergen-C, Emergen-Zzzz is a dietary additive that I add to 1/2 cup of water about an hour before bed. It not only has melatonin, but it has key nutrients to help give your immune system a boost while your body is repairing itself overnight. Don't overdo it on the water, peeing all night is the opposite of what you want. I love the extra Vitamin C because you know I am a wee bit of a hypochondriac about Ebola.  I prefer the peach, but the berry is equally delicious.  


2. Lavender Essential Oil

The National Sleep Foundation says that lavender has been shown to decrease heart rate and blood pressure, potentially putting you in a more relaxed state. In one study, researchers monitored the brain waves of subjects at night and found that those who sniffed lavender before bed had more deep sleep and felt more vigorous in the morning. I spritz my pillow and bedsheets with lavender. I also drop a few droplets in the bottom of my shower so I can breathe it in. I can definitely feel the benefits in relaxation.    


3. A Hot Shower

Coming out of a warm shower and into a cooler bedroom will cause a slight decrease in body temperature, a drop that scientifically helps trigger a tranquil, drowsy feeling by slowing down essential metabolic activities, says the greatest.com.  Be sure you keep your shower short, between 5 and 15 minutes. This is my go-to. I have even awoken from sleeping at 3 am and taken a shower and returned to sleep. It works.