Hey Mama, we could ask you when you last had a decent night’s sleep, but we already know the answer — about 3 months before your first baby was born, areweright?! Whether you’re up for nighttime feedings, monster-under-the-bed alerts, or slumber party patrols, your ability to get a full night of sleep seems to be something that falls to the wayside after you become a parent. If it’s been so long since you slept well that you don’t remember how it’s done, read on — we’ll have you snoring like a teenager sleeping in on a Saturday.
You’ve probably heard of melatonin. It’s a hormone secreted by your brain’s pineal gland to get you ready for relaxation. It basically tells your body to chill. As we get older, the body produces less of it (#thanksmothernature) and that may affect your ability to fall asleep or stay asleep. Taking a melatonin supplement may help counter lower levels in your body to help your sleep quality and quantity. It’s safe and non-addictive, but definitely talk to your doctor if you have more questions about how it can help you.
Two to Try:
This well-reviewed supplement has 5mg of melatonin and comes in a strawberry-flavored, fast-dissolving tablet. Says one well-rested reviewer, “I’ve tried other sleeping aids…but without much success. I really like that these get me relaxed enough to go to sleep easily but I’m still able to get up in the middle of the night to go to the restroom if I need to without any trouble. No dizziness or drowsiness. And no grogginess in the morning. I have been able to sleep better since taking these and I feel like I’m sleeping more.”
These fruity-flavored gummies contain multiple ingredients to help you get a good night of shuteye. Melatonin works with L-Theanine, a calming amino acid that’s also found in green tea, and other botanicals like chamomile and passionflower that soothe and relax your mind. Says one chillaxed customer, “For decades, I have been plagued by various levels of insomnia. That was before an angel referred me to OLLY Restful Sleep Gummy Supplements. Combining the perfect texture of Welch’s Mixed Fruit Snacks and the nostalgic flavor of Children’s Dimetapp, these gummies’ relaxing effect are felt within minutes, with a good night’s sleep always soon to follow.”
The idea behind weighted blankets, which are typically filled with plastic pellets to make them about 15lbs or more, is that the heavy feeling has a calming effect on your restless mind. Sort of like swaddling for adults. They keep you from tossing and turning and might help sleep more securely. Hey, it’s worth a shot, right?
Two to Try:
Something to keep in mind when you’re shopping for a weighted blanket – the heavier YOU are, the heavier your blanket should be. This one comes in different weights for different sized people and has more than 3K 5-star reviews. Says one happily enveloped sleeper, “I never write reviews but thought I should after buying two of these blankets! I haven’t slept through the night for almost 6 years, thanks to a difficult pregnancy and baby. It trained my body to only sleep a couple hours at a time. I tried everything, and am shocked that a weighted blanket worked so magically! From restless legs, insomnia, anxiety, it is an instant fix! I have it draped over me while I write this and it feels amazing!”
This seven-layered super-comfy blanket comes with a removable minky duvet cover for added warmth during the winter. It has an insane 8K+ 5-star reviews on Amazon. Says one duvet cover lover, “Many of the reviews I read mentioned unnatural shifting of weight distributed within the quilted chambers, leakage of weighting materials, poor sewing quality, having to buy separate (and expensive) covers, etc. This blanket has none of those issues. It is VERY WELL MADE and I’m sleeping BETTER than ever before. …I have to say that this blanket is one of the BEST investments I’ve made, hands down! It’s worth every penny.”
White Noise Machine
If you’ve wondered how turning on a machine to make noise next to your bed could actually help you sleep, here’s the answer: these kinds of devices actually work to both block distracting noises and produce soothing sounds that are relaxing and sleep inducing. Plugging in a white noise machine is way better than falling asleep with the T.V. on because your brain might still be trying to pay attention to what’s happening on the screen.
Two to try:
Considered the OG of white noise machines, this produces sounds with the same intensity through the audible range creating a uniform tone perfect for masking loud disruptions. It’s got 10,500 5-star reviews on Amazon, people! Says one mellow listener, “I have tried many different sleep aids and sound machines, the kinds that make the sound of rain or the ocean or chirping insects etc and they have never really worked for me. The white noise sound enables me to sleep like never before. It helps to drown out the sound of my husband and dogs snoring too! It really allows me to have a great night’s sleep, and sleep deeply and feel rested in the morning. I wish I had it years ago when I was pregnant and had trouble sleeping.”
This futuristic-looking machine packs up easily and plays 6 digitally recorded relaxing sounds: White Noise, Thunder, Ocean, Rain, Summer Night, and Brook. Says one rested reviewer, “I suffer from insomnia and this has made an incredible difference in the amount of time it takes me to fall asleep (it was about an hour and after a week of use I’m down to about 20 minutes). I also don’t wake up as many times during the night. I love how the volume is adjustable and how the machine offers more than just white noise. My favorite sounds are ‘rain’ and ‘summer night.’ High quality sound that doesn’t sound overly digitized. ”
Sunrise Alarm Clock
Sunrise alarm clocks, or light alarm clocks, simulate a sunrise to attempt to wake you up gently and gradually, rather than the blaring, loud-enough-to-wake-the-dead traditional alarm clocks you’ve used all your life. Natural morning light helps prepare your body to wake up by raising our body temperature and cortisol levels, and artificial light can do the same. All this leads to more complete sleep cycles and patterns of sleep.
Two to Try:
Instead of bright white light that could be irritating first thing in the morning, this alarm clock uses a more soothing red-tinted light that gradually grows into white light. It also connects to your smart phone so you can control the light intensity and sounds from anywhere. Says one new morning person, “I bought this to help with the darker mornings… I’m so impressed, after only using it a week, the difference it makes in how easy it is to get up in the morning, with just the light simulation, is amazing! I wake up less tired and more ready to get on with my day.”
Good morning Sunshine! This light alarm clock features a colored sunrise simulation and 20 brightness settings, with the light gradually increasing between 20 to 40 minutes prior to your alarm time. You can also set it to slowly dim before bedtime to let you drift off to sleep. Says one more mellow reviewer, “This thing is a game changer! I got it because I got tired of being owned by my phone. Now I can leave the phone charging across the room (or in a handbag even. Who cares?) I can set this for the “sun to set” at 15, 30, 45, or 60 minutes later. So I set it, and I get in bed and read a book for an hour. Then the “sun goes down” gradually, and I go to bed.”
How can your pillows affect your quality of sleep? If you’re not tossing your old ones once every year or two, stuff can build up inside your pillow. Stuff like oil, dead skin cells, bacteria, and all the other microscopic crap you have growing or crawling all over your face. (#ewwwwwwwww) It’s the perfect breeding ground for dust mites and other allergy-causing creatures. So replace your pillows, please.
Two to Try:
How have we never used this before? This medium firm memory foam and microfiber pillow comes with 1/2 lb bag of fill that you can add into your pillow to completely adjust it to your comfort. It’s also hypoallergenic and dust mite resistant. It really is the perfect pillow. Just scroll through the 12K 5-star reviews. (We’ll wait.) Says one snoozer, “Princess and the pea deal here. Most pillows aren’t to my liking – I like firmness but not memory foam stiffness. I hate fluffy pillows where you just sink in…Ever had a pillow so good you want to stay in bed? Yeah. It’s like that. Oh and my cat has claimed the other pillow because he likes it too.”
This ergonomic pillow made from breathable memory form provides better air circulation to keep you cool and dry. Sounds dreamy! Says one cool customer, “This pillow is DREAM for anyone who has chronic neck pain, likes to sleep on one dominate side or tends to flip from side to side through the night. It is also FIRM. So if you need something on the softer side this pillow is not for you. But if you need FIRM support and enjoy waking up to some healthy deep cracks in the neck that realign your neck and shoulders, then get this pillow!”
Our mom experts only recommend picks they really love. We may earn a commission on purchases made through links from our site, but if we love it, we know you’ll love it. And we Scary Mommies gotta stick together.