Sleep Related

7 Weighted Blanket Alternatives That You Can Make at Home

A sense of calm. Less anxiety. Falling asleep faster. Relief for restless leg syndrome. Not to speak of all the parents who rave how a weighted blanket ease the symptoms of their child with autism. There are many more benefits that you can get by sleeping under a heavy blanket.

Weighted blankets are a valuable weapon in your quest to get good sleep. But they can be quite expensive. $50+ for a blanket? It’s normal.

So before you take the leap to buy one – please first try one of the following weighted blanket alternatives  to mimic the feeling. It might already be enough for you to reap all the benefits.

My (short story) with weighted blankets

I’m immensely grateful I don’t have a serious (sleeping) disorder, such as clinical insomnia, autism or ADHD. 

But I do notice the difference between winter and summer blankets. I love summer – but if there’s one thing that always troubles me is that it’s harder for me to fall asleep. Why? Because instead of my thick regular winter blanket I’m sleeping under a thin summer one. Sleeping under a thick heavy blanket has a special feeling to it and makes it easier to fall asleep. 

What I’m doing now each summer, is take an old blanket that is pretty heavy – but still gives me enough airflow. So it’s heavier than a regular summer blanket, and still cool enough to sleep well. 

I’ve also done the research and found 7 other low-cost alternatives for heavy blankets. I’ve organised them from super easy to more difficult to create. So you can keep things as easy and simple for you as you like.

Quick recap of the benefits of weighted blankets

Check below if there’s anything you may struggle with or lack in your life. If you tick the boxes of one or more, why not do a 7 night experiment with one of the following alternatives? The biggest risk is you’ll sleep better!

  1. Helps manage autism symptoms
  2. Manages OCD
  3. Panic disorder
  4. PTSD
  5. Eases pain without drugs
  6. Promotes calm
  7. Boosts sleep quality
  8. Helps with restless leg syndrome
  9. Improves ADHD
  10. Reduces stress and anxiety
  11. Feels like a big warm hug!

Check the sources down the page for references!

7 Weighted Blanket Alternatives

#1 Pile of blankets

This is the easiest way to see if weighted blankets might work for you. It might go without saying: if you want to experience the feeling of a heavy blanket, why not try sleeping underneath several regular blankets? You probably have more than 1 blanket, right? So try putting them on top of each other and see if that helps.

For example, if your normal blanket weighs 1.5 pounds, and you want to try a weighted blanket from 15 pounds – then you need to put 10 blankets on top of each other.

If this sounds like a lot of effort, don’t worry. In many cases, just stacking 2 or 3 blankets on top of each other will already have its desired effects.

This is the easiest alternative to weighted blanket, so why  not try it out tonight?

#2 Heavy or tight clothing

This is another cheap option to quickly try out. It’s accessible to everyone and who knows – it might just help you enough to sleep better.

If the main aspect of weighted blankets for you is that you feel as if you’re being tightly hugged, then you could try wearing heavy or tight clothing.

This can also be an option if your partner doesn’t want to sleep under several regular blankets (alternative #1).

If you regularly sleep in pyjamas, you can add a heavy winter sweater to it. Or some extra pants.

The only downside of this method is that you will sleep a lot warmer than if you were to try any of the other methods. You can offset this by sleeping with a light blanket, keeping the room temperature colder than normal or sleeping with the windows open. Or, my favorite, to sleep with your feet NOT under the blanket. You’d be surprised how much heat your feet can lose if you expose them to the air.

#3 Wool blankets

Wool is warm. It can be itchy. A blanket made from wool is also heavier than regular blankets. So it makes sense in this case to take the wool blanket and put it on top of your regular blanket. 

This way you’ll feel the pressure better, without all the itchiness. 

#4 Use dumbbells to pull your blanket down

Now, if you’re mainly looking for the pressure and tight feeling, then this method works great. All you do is take 2 dumbbells and put them on the side of your blanket. This works best if you’ve got a blanket that’s wider than your bed, as you can put the dumbbells on the floor. 

If you don’t have dumbbells lying around at home, than other heavy things work just as fine. The reason why this method works, is the dumbbells stretch your blanket so that it adds pressure to you.

It might be a bit of a hassle in the beginning to get the stretch right, but you’ll quickly learn how it works best for you.

#5 Add weight to your blanket

If the previous options sound a too warm for you. And the 4th one isn’t heavy enough,then you can consider the 5th option. It’s simple. Just add something heavy to a regular blanket. Here are some ideas:

  • Marbles
  • Beans
  • Clothes
  • Towels

Anything that’s heavy, not sharp, and can stay there for a longer period of time. I even saw one site suggesting putting books into it. While that would certainly increase the weight, it wouldn’t be evenly distributed. Not to speak about the uncomfortable!

#6 Equestrian blanket

I personally wouldn’t pick this option, as you would need to wash it 20 times before the horse smell would get out of it. But if you manage to get a new one, that hasn’t been used, you can try sleeping underneath a horse blanket.

All you need to do is get an equestrian blanket and put it on top of your regular blanket. Otherwise it might be too uncomfortable. And be sure to wash it if you didn’t get it 100% new!

#7 DIY Weighted Blanket

If you’re into creating things yourself, then you can also decide to make your own. One quick look at Etsy, will show hundreds of creative people doing just that. I haven’t tried this myself yet myself, but I can imagine that if you take a normal blanket – and add marbles or beans to it (anything heavy and not sharp goes), it would make a great alternative to weighted blanket for a lot less money. Check this incredibly helpful video how to make your own DIY weighted blanket.

Seven night action plan

I’m always disappointed with those super informational posts you often find on Google that have absolutely no recommended actions in them. That’s why I strive to end every post with an action plan. So here’s my 7 day plan to sleep better without buying a weighted blanket 😉

  1. Check the 7 alternatives and give each one a check that you have the materials for at home.
  2. Do you want pressure and warmth? Pick 1, 2 3 or 5 (and fill with towels/clothes)
  3. Do you want just pressure without overheating? Pick 4 or 5 (and fill with marbles/beans)
  4. Try each available variant for you for just 5 minutes. Which one do you find the most comfortable?
  5. Choose that alternative and try it for 1 week. Does your sleep get better? Do you experience an improvement in your symptoms?
  6. If yes, congratulations! Enjoy your newfound better sleep.
  7. If not, don’t worry! Try one of the alternatives and do another test week.

There you have it. 7 weighted blanket alternatives and a 7 night action plan with exactly 7 steps. I wish you good luck with this experiment and sincerely hope it helps you improve your sleep.

Got experiences with weighted blankets? Found a mistake in my article? Just leave a little comment and I’ll get in touch with you!

Scientific literature & sources

For those of you who want more information, here’s some articles I used as sources:

And here are some helpful scientific articles written about weighted blankets. I’d say the research is still in its infancy, but shows promising results:

Sleep Related

How Long Does it Take for Melatonin to Work?

Melatonin is the most popular sleeping supplement in the world. It’s estimated that around 1.3% of all Americans take melatonin. That’s 3.1 million. One common question is how long does it take for melatonin to work? After all, you want to fall asleep soundly and – preferable quickly – after taking melatonin.

Today we’re going to discuss how long you’d have to wait to feel the melatonin effects. But we’ll also talk about other factors that influence this, whether or not you can make it work faster.

Also, for those that say that they do not feel the effects of melatonin: it’s possible that you are, but are doing other things that hinder the melatonins effect from fully taking place. We’ll talk about those in the end.

How long does melatonin take to work?

Here’s the short answer:

In general for most people, it takes about 30 minutes to start feeling the sleepy effects.

However, there’s a range for different people. You might feel it after an hour, whereas I tend to get sleepy after 20 minutes.

This is because after you take melatonin, the supplement needs to go through your digestive system. Then it needs to be taken up into your blood and cross the blood-brain barrier. That’s only when it can start to have its effects.

Quick dissolving vs slow-release melatonin

Look, melatonin is sold in 3 different release tablets/gums:

  • Quick dissolving
  • Slow release

Now, these names imply already what type of effect they have. Most people do fine with the regular variant. But there can be instances when you’d prefer a quicker effect – and times when you’d like to have a slow release.

For example: you regularly take slow release melatonin around 10.30 at night. And you wake up at 7.30. Only today you need to work overtime. You only come home at 11, but you’re not sleepy yet. In this case it might be a good idea to take a quick dissolving tablet.

Other factors that influence how long it takes

Just like with any other supplement that goes through the digestive system before it works, there are many other factors that influence uptake. It goes without saying if you just had a large meal and then pop your melatonin, that it won’t work as fast as if you’d taken it on an empty stomach.

Here are some other factors that determine how long does it take for melatonin to work:

  • Body weight
  • Dosage
  • Age
  • Empty stomach

Can you make it work faster?

In general I’d say you cannot make melatonin work faster. The reason for that is because many factors are outside of your control. You cannot change your metabolism.

What you can do however, is optimize the process. But that needs some planning and forethought.

If you take regular (quick dissolving) melatonin and you do not have a large meal in your stomach, then you’ve already optimized the uptake of melatonin for 80%.

Some people might argue that you can take MORE melatonin to make it work quicker. But research has shown that for melatonin more doesn’t have an effect. It’s recommended to start at the lowest dosage of 0.3 grams and then see if it has an effect.

The placebo effect can also help

If you’ve taken melatonin many times throughout your life, even the act of taking the pill can already make you feel more sleepy. I certainly experience this and the moment I take melatonin, I quickly start to become tired.

My body and brain are conditioned that they’ve associated melatonin with falling asleep quickly and sleeping for a long deep sleep.

So in this case, I might be off to dream land already after 10 minutes. Even though the melatonin technically isn’t working yet.

Does it matter? I don’t think so. Melatonin is supposed to help you sleep better. So it doesn’t matter which road it takes as long as it accomplishes the goal.

Maybe something else is stopping you from sleeping?

One common problem with melatonin is that its effect is subtle. With a bit of willpower or outside circumstances it’s not that difficult to override its effect.

When you take melatonin, it pushes you subtly into the direction of sleep. If you then take this push, get ready for bed and lay down, it will be easier to fall asleep.

However, if you keep on watching a scary horror movie and get a cup of coffee – you’re probably not going to feel sleepy.

The stimuli from the coffee and the movie will be stronger than the subtle push of the melatonin.

So in this case you yourself might be the limiting factor for how long it takes.

how long does it take for melatonin to work
If this is you at 2 AM in the morning, you might be stopping melatonin from working correctly.

You can see melatonin as the navigation in your car. If you follow its instructions you’ll get to where you want to go faster.

But if you don’t, and go in random directions (or opposite), you might not even end up at your destination (sleep). Or it may take you two times as long.

Here’s a list of things that will hinder how long it takes for melatonin to work:

  • Exposure to blue light in the evening
  • Stress
  • Cafeïne
  • Other exciting stimuli

Also, if you’re simply not tired yet, the push from melatonin can be not strong enough to make you tired. For example, I could take all the melatonin I want at 11AM, I am probably not going to fall asleep (unless you count my 2PM power nap!)

Conclusions melatonin timeline

If you take melatonin, you’ll likely feel the sleepy effects in about 30 minutes. It can be as early as 15 minutes if you’re sensitive and took it on an empty stomach. Or it can be as long as 1 hour if you have a tolerance and just ate.

Important to note is that there are some things you can do to stop melatonin from working. Things such as coffee, blue light exposure or other exciting things may cancer the push melatonin gives you towards sleep.

Sleep Related

Signs That It’s Time to Seek Help for Your Sleeping Disorder

There are many things you have to do stay healthy. So many, in fact, that it’s sometimes difficult to stay on top of them all. That long list includes eating a balanced diet, getting plenty of exercise and managing stress. All of those are difficult if you can’t get enough sleep.

It’s the keystone of well-being without which all the rest comes tumbling down, posing a major long-term threat to the 60 million Americans who suffer from insomnia each year. If you’re among them, you’re right to be worried, but don’t let that cause you to toss and turn at night any more than you already do.

There are measures you can take at home to improve your chances of getting a good night’s slumber, such as keeping your bedroom as dark as possible, showering at night and drinking chamomile tea before bed. It may even be as simple as buying an air purifier or humidifier (be sure to do some online research for a model that works for your family before making a purchase, though — How to Home is a good place to find reviews on home goods). But what if all that doesn’t work? It may be time to see a doctor. Here are some warning signs that you need medical attention.

General Fatigue

Feeling tired every now and then is perfectly normal, but it shouldn’t last for days on end. Before you peg insomnia as the obvious culprit, be sure there isn’t something else to blame, such as a mood or anxiety disorder. Viral infections and diseases such as anemia and hypothyroidism also cause excessive tiredness.

Weight Gain

There’s more to it than just being too tired to go the gym because you didn’t get your Zs. It turns out that sleep deprivation disrupts the levels of hormones that regulate hunger, causing you to crave calorie-dense foods even though you’ve already eaten enough. What’s more, that leads to fat deposits around your waist, increasing your risk of type 2 diabetes.

Repeated Illnesses

According to research cited in an article by the Valley Sleep Center, even a small reduction in the amount of sleep you get can result in a weakened immune system, thus leaving your body more susceptible to infection from viruses and bacteria, increasing the likelihood that you’ll fall sick. Flu season can be particularly dangerous.

Difficulty Concentrating

This is often accompanied by lapses in memory, trouble finishing tasks and an inability to stay organized, and they’re all linked to a lack of sleep. Your brain remains active while you snooze, removing waste products from its cells. When that doesn’t happen, you feel “foggy” the next day and unable to think clearly.

Feeling Overwhelmed

It’s a vicious circle. Stress keeps you awake at night, and then you feel tired the next day and find it difficult to perform at work. That leads to even more stress until it all spirals out of control into a full-blown anxiety attack. Left unchecked, the process can result in serious mental health disorders.

Problems at Work

You can probably see where this is going: your job becomes increasingly more difficult as you struggle to think your way through daily duties, all the while dealing with stress that keeps building and building. If you’ve called in sick one too many times, that also does damage to your reputation in the company.

Relationship Issues

The explanation for this should be fairly obvious, but it’s also bolstered by science. Researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, found that not getting enough shut-eye can result in not being as “engaged [with] and [appreciative] of your partner the next day,” reports Everyday Health. The result? An awful lot of strain in couples.

Dozing Off While Driving

This should be the last straw. Research shows that people with difficulty falling asleep are 2.4 times more likely to die from an injury sustained in a motor vehicle accident. What isn’t mentioned is how much more likely they are to kill someone.

Hopefully, things haven’t gotten this far, and you can end sleeplessness on your own. If many of these warning signs apply to you, don’t be ashamed to ask for help from a professional. You need and deserve it.


This is a guest post from Julia, a retired board certified nurse practitioner from There you’ll find tips that she has developed to help you be your own advocate in seeking medical care, dealing with insurance companies, and how to make sure you are contributing to your own health and well-being. Her best advice? Befriend your doctor!


Image via Unsplash.

Sleep Related

Cushion Firm vs Firm: Which Is Better for Which Type of Sleeper?

cushion firm vs firm

Mattresses come in all sorts of sizes and shapes. So it can be difficult to learn which mattress is the best choice for you that today we’re going to discuss different firmness types in mattresses. So you learn which type is better for you, if you’re suffering from back pains, or want your mattress to be comfortable. The main focus of today’s article will be cushion ferm versus firm.

On the surface both terms may seem similar, but there are slight differences in how they are produced. And more importantly, how they feel when you sleep on it. What exactly? Find out…

What’s the difference between cushion firm and firm?

Firm is the most firm option that most mattresses give you. It gives the most support – but has a harder feel.

Cushion firm on the other hand, still offers the same support as a firm mattress. With the difference that it’s a bit softer. So the majority of people will find it more comfortable to sleep on than a complete firm mattress.

Sometimes cushion firm mattresses are also referred to as medium firm mattresses. That’s because they’re in between firm and soft.

Which is better for you?

A firm mattress is a mattress that usually has a small layer of foam on top to soften the mattress slightly – while keeping the necessary firmness from the lower layers for support. This a good choice for you if sleep usually on  your back, but also for stomach sleepers.

Many people with back problems also like to sleep on a firmer mattress, as it offers more support and they don’t sink into the mattress. This can take the spine out of balance and you might wake up with back pain.

A cushion firm mattresses better if you sleep on your side, as you need to sink more into the mattress. A too firm mattress for side sleepers can feel uncomfortable. Also, many couples tend to prefer a cushion firm mattress, in case both partners need to compromise.

Despite that firm mattresses are generally better for back and stomach sleepers, you can still sleep well on a cushion firm mattress on your back and stomach. If you sleep in a mix of positions, then I highly recommend you get a cushion firm mattress.

Cushion firm mattresses are often made like a regular firm mattress, but with extra cushioning added on top to make it feel softer when you sleep on it.

Cushion ferm vs firm

So here’s a quick recap of what we discussed in the previous paragraph about the differences between cushion firm vs firm:

  • Cushion firm: great choice for couples, side sleepers and people who sleep in a mix of sleep positions
  • Firm: solid choice if you only sleep on your back or stomach, or if you need extra support for your back.

Mattresses that offer both

The great thing with many modern mattresses, is that you can customize them. Now, the materials used are often not customizable, but you do get the choice to choose between cushion firm vs firm. So if you like a specific brand of mattress, you can choose the right firmness that suits your body and sleeping pattern.

One important thing to mention is that cushion firm is also often just called medium. So it’s neither soft nor firm. So bear that in mind as many mattress companies don’t use the exact cushion firm term. Which might confuse you if you’re looking for a specific mattress with that terminology.

Even if you’re not completely sure which of the two firmness types you prefer, there are a couple of options:

  • You can go to a mattress store and try out different mattresses with different firmnesses. This will allow you to get a physical feeling with each type and will make it much easier to make the right choice. The downside of this is that you won’t get a complete image of it by laying on the bed for 5 minutes while talking to a salesman.
  • The other option would be to do your research online (or go with your first hunch after testing it out in the store). Then when you’re looking for a mattress, make sure that they offer a trial of at least 30 days. This will allow you to check if the mattress is correct for you. After all, you get at least 2 week’s sleep on the mattress and you’ll learn exactly if you comfortably sleep on it or not.

If you already have bought a mattress and find that it’s too firm (or not firm enough) there are a couple of things you can do to change the firmness.

The first thing is to check your warranty. maybe it’s still possible to exchange the mattress for another one with a different firmness.

Some companies also offer you a mattress topper if the mattress is too firm for you. Which brings us to the nex point. You can get a mattress topper to soften the sleeping surface. This will make it more comfortable and you’ll sleep better.

Final thoughts cushion firm vs firm

The main differences between cushion firm vs firm are that firm is good for those with back issues, who sleep on their stomach or back. Cushion firm (or medium) is better for couples (who need to compromise on what’s best for  both), side sleepers or if you sleep in a variety of positions.

Most mattresses can be bought in different firmnesses, so you can easily shop around and you’re not confined to a specific brand.

Also, if you’re unsure what you prefer, you can go to a mattress store and try some mattresses there. Alternatively, order a mattress online that has a sleeping trial of at least 30 days. This will allow you to test it at home and then make an educated decision if this is the right choice for you.

P.S. want to buy a comfortable mattress that offers different types of firmness? Check out the Nectar mattress – if you buy now you get $125 off and 2 FREE pillows! More information here.

Sleep Related

Ikea Malfors Mattress Review: Is Ikea Foam a Good Choice?

Ikea also has foam mattresses, and one of the cheapest of these is the ikea Malfors. The mattress is made from only one layer – so it’s one of the more simpler mattresses around. Today we’re going to discuss whether this mattress is a good choice if you’re looking for a new mattress. Curious? Continue reading this Ikea Malfors mattress review …

It’s definitely not the best foam mattress available, but if you’re looking to dip your toes in the foam mattress waters, then it’s a solid choice to explore. Check the price here.

Ikea Malfors mattress review

We’ve reviewed different Ikea mattresses before. So if you want to know how the Malfors compares to them, feel free to browse the following reviews:

Here are the specifications of the Malfors mattress:

  • Ticking: 64% polyester, 36% cotton
  • Comfort material: Polyester wadding
  • Lining: Non-woven polypropylene
  • Comfort material: Polyurethane foam 28 kg/cu.m.
  • 12 centimeter thick (5 inches)

For more information and price of the mattress click here.

Two types of people who’ll enjoy sleeping on the mattress.

Since the Malfors isn’t a luxury mattress made for optimal sleep for the majority of people, I feel the mattress is best suited for the following types of people:

  • People who are sleeping on a spring mattress, and want to try foam for a small price –  foam offers many benefits compared to springs, but many other foam mattresses are expensive. The Malfors give you the perfect opportunity to see if you like sleeping on foam.
  • People who are looking for a great mattress for the guest room –  because the mattress is not expensive, it’s a great option to put in the guestroom. Your guests won’t complain and sleep well (compared to other cheap mattresses).

Five benefits of the Malfors mattress

Foam for comfort

As we spoke about before, if you’re used to springs, then you’re in for a treat with sleeping on foam. The foam conforms to your body and will offer more support where it’s needed, without pushing too much on your hips or shoulders (as with springs).

It’s a completely new experience, and it’s good if you’re not getting the optimal sleep you need. Maybe all you need to do is get a change in mattress? Or if you’ve always wanted to try foam, but was scared of the high prices associated with it, then the Ikea Malfors mattress is a solid choice for you.

Remove fabric for easy washing

This is one thing I always wonder why not every mattress has it: a removable cover. You never know what might happen and it’s just so incredibly convenient to clean the cover once a while. It’s also great to get rid of dust mites and any other small creatures that creep into your mattress over time.

The cover of the Malfors can be removed with a zipper. It’s child safe too, so small children won’t be able to open it and cause potentially dangerous situations.

Roll-packed (take it home in your car)

Since the mattress is made from 1 layer and only 12 cm (5 inches thick), it’s one of the easiest mattresses to take home with you. Its roll-packed and doesn’t weigh a lot, so you can easily put it in your car and take it home.

When you open it, be prepared though that the mattress still has to expend a bit. 12 cm is already  thin for a mattress, and it will be even smaller the first couple of days. This is normal and after 72 hours the mattress should’ve gained its full size.

Also, as with every foam mattress, the Malfors has to off gas. Which means that it will smell a little weird the first couple of days. Again, don’t worry. This is completely normal and will go away with several days. Keep the windows open for fresh air if you want this to go faster.

Good movement isolation

The foam in the mattress is great for motion isolation. (much better than springs). so if you or your partner wake each other up at night from turning and tossing, this is a great thing to have. It will make you both sleep better, since your movements are isolated to your part of the bed.

Warranty of 25 years and 100 day sleeping trial

Ikea is a large company and therefore you get the quality warranty that they have. If anything might be wrong with the mattress, you have a 25 year warranty. Also, you can also try out the mattress for 100 nights. This is a lot better than trying it out in the store. You will be able to get a real feel for how the mattress sleeps. If it might not work out, you can always return it to Ikea.

Don’t get the Malfors if….

… you’re looking for memory foam

Just to be sure in this Ikea Malfors mattress review: it’s not a memory foam mattress. So if you’re looking for the adapting foam qualities of memory foam, then the Malfors is not the right mattress for you.

… you want a durable mattress (3+ years)

Look, for its price the Malfors is a great choice. However, you shouldn’t expect the durability of a higher priced mattress. If you want your mattress to be still in top-shape in 10 years, then I highly recommend you get another mattress.

So how about alternatives?


Nectar memory foam 

Mattress offers great support for your body. Made from 100% memory foam for comfort. Offers a 365 night trial for you to test it yourself. Lifetime warranty.

4.7 of 5 Stars#2

Nest Bedding Hybrid 

Premium bed for an affordable price. Suitable for back, stomach and side sleepers. 100 night trial and a lifetime warranty. Can be pricey, but worth it.

4.2 of 5 Stars#3

Amerisleep AS1

Luxury mattress with a celliant cover fabric for improved bloodflow. Thick support layer and great motion isolation. 100 night trial and 20 year warranty.

4 of 5 Stars

Final thoughts Ikea Malfors mattress review

We’ve made it to the end of this Ikea Malfors mattress review. It’s a good mattress, especially considering the price. It’s one of the cheapest foam mattresses from Ikea and is perfect if you’d like to try out foam after sleeping on coils. This also makes it a good choice for a guest room mattress.


Click here for the price of the Malfors mattress!


P.S. for a quick recap: the Malfors mattress is a solid mattress for the price.

Sleep Related

Ikea Hafslo Mattress Review: Can a Mattress This Cheap be Good?

 One of the cheapest Ikea mattresses is the Ikea Hafslo. Is it a good mattress to sleep on for  a longer period of time? And is it comfortable? Learn everything you need to know in this Ikea Hafslo mattress review …

Ikea mattresses are known for their affordability, but maybe the Hafslo pushes the limit. However, if you’re looking exactly for a mattress that you’d be using temporary, then it might be a solid choice for you.

More Ikea mattress reviews:

Ikea Hafslo mattress review

The Hafslo is made Bonnell springs and it’s not the most advanced mattress you’ll be able to find. Which is fine for the price. It might even remind you of mattresses from several years ago.

Here’s an overview of the specifications of the Hafslo mattress:

  • Ticking/ Total composition: 73% cotton, 27% polyester
  • Ticking, side/ Ticking: 64% cotton, 36% polyester
  • Ticking, underside/ Ticking: 100% polyester
  • Bonell spring units: Steel
  • Comfort material: Polyurethane foam 28 kg/cu.m.
  • Comfort material: Polyester wadding
  • Lining: Non-woven polypropylene

Two Types of people whom the mattress is for

In general, I think there are 2 types of people who will get the most out of this mattress. See if you can identify:

  • People who want a temporary mattress – if you’re looking for a cheap mattress to sleep on for a couple of months (while moving for example), the Hafslo mattress is a solid option.
  • People with young children –  children grow fast and there’s always the chance of a little accident. In that case it’s good to have an okay, but not too expensive mattress.

Four benefits of sleeping on the Hafslo mattress

Cheap mattress

I would say the main benefit of this mattress is it’s price. You won’t be able to find much other mattresses for such a low price. And this means that it’s a great mattress, if you’re looking for a temporary mattress that you won’t really care about. For example, if you’re in the middle of a hectic period, or you might be moving in the near future, and you don’t want to take the mattress with you. Then this mattress is a great choice. Since the mattress is that cheap, you wouldn’t really care if something happens to it or if it might get dirty or lost somewhere.

Bonnell springs for support

Bonnell Springs are springs that have been used for a long time in mattresses. So the feeling of the mattress might be that of a mattress 20 years ago. Now, this does not necessarily have to be a bad thing. Bonnell mattresses are a great choice for a specific type of people. And another benefit is that they wouldn’t not sleep hot in summer. There is enough space between the springs, so that the heat can leave the mattress. So if you sleep hot in summer usually, that is mattress is a great choice for you, because of the springs in it.

Ninety days sleeping trial

Look, is difficult to test a mattress in the IKEA store. There are hundreds of passers-by, and you won’t get a real life experience from lying on the bed for 5 minutes. Luckily, when you order the mattress you get 90 days to sleep on the mattress and then you can make a decision. If you see in this time, that the mattress is not for you, then you can return it to IKEA.

Ikea 25 year warranty

Another thing that’s nice to have is the IKEA warranty. This means that if anything might happen to your mattress, which is not your fault, you can return it to IKEA and they will fix it.

Why you shouldn’t get the mattress

Can be uncomfortable

One down side of the mattress, and many other Bonnell Springs is that it can be uncomfortable for some people. Now, as might be expected of a mattress in this price range, but if you’re experiencing back pain, or have any other problems sleeping, then I highly recommend you get a more expensive mattress. This mattress is mainly suited if you’re really going to use it temporarily, or if you can literally sleep everywhere.

Poor motion transfer

Another downside of the mattress is it motion transfer. If you’re planning on sleeping on the mattress with your partner, and you or your partner tosses and turns and night, that it might not be the best idea to get this mattress. If one partner has Insomnia or tosses, then the other partner will probably also wake up. This is bad for your sleep.

Durability not too good

As we touch upon before with the durability of this mattress, it’s good for sleeping on it for a year or two maybe. Anything longer, and I highly recommend you get a more expensive mattress with better durability. Otherwise you might still end up spending more money for a lesser quality mattress in the long run.

Another downside is that if you want to get it delivered, it also will cost you money. This is expected for a mattress this price, but if you even go a little higher in mattress price class, then companies will already deliver the mattress for free.

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So how about alternatives?

“Here are the top 3 mattresses I recommend.”


Nectar memory foam 

Mattress offers great support for your body. Made from 100% memory foam for comfort. Offers a 365 night trial for you to test it yourself. Lifetime warranty.

4.7 of 5 StarsGet $100 off#2

Nest Bedding Hybrid 

Premium bed for an affordable price. Suitable for back, stomach and side sleepers. 100 night trial and a lifetime warranty. Can be pricey, but worth it.

4.2 of 5 StarsSee price#3

Amerisleep AS1

Luxury mattress with a celliant cover fabric for improved bloodflow. Thick support layer and great motion isolation. 100 night trial and 20 year warranty.

4 of 5 StarsGet $200 off

Final thoughts Ikea Hafslo mattress review

Alright, we’ve made it through this Ikea Hafslo mattress review.  The mattress is alright in general. But it’s mainly for those who are on a budget. Or if you do not plan on sleeping on it for a long time, then it’s also fine. However, if you plan on sleeping on the mattress for more than 2 years, or do you have any postural or back problems, then it is not recommended to get this mattress.

Check the price on Amazon!

P.S. Enjoyed reading this Ikea Hafslo mattress review? But looking for something with better quality? The Nectar mattress might be more expensive, but it will last you much longer. On top of that, if you order it now, you get $125 off. Order the Nectar mattress now!

Sleep Related

Ikea Hamarvik Mattress Review: 4 Reasons NOT to Order This Mattress

 I don’t think I’ve been in a house or apartment the last 3 years and not seen at least one Ikea product. Either it’s the couch, or these easily-recognisable 8-sided glasses. Have you experienced the same? The only thing many people seem to be a bit wary off are Ikea mattresses. Are they from the same quality as other products? Can a mattress be that cheap and still sleep well? Today we’re going to discuss the Ikea Hamarvik mattress review …

It’s an affordable mattress and if you’re on a budget it’s a solid option. Curious what exactly the specifications and advantages are? Continue reading to find out:

Ikea Hamarvik mattress review

The most likely reason that you’d want to get an Ikea mattress is because they’re affordable. here are the specifications as described on the official site:

  • Ticking/ Ticking: 64% polyester, 36% cotton
  • Ticking, side/ Ticking: 64% cotton, 36% polyester
  • Ticking, underside/ Ticking: 100% polyester
  • Bonell spring units: Steel
  • Comfort material: Polyurethane foam 25 kg/cu.m., Polyester wadding
  • Lining: Non-woven polypropylene
  • Comfort material: Polyurethane foam 28 kg/cu.m.

Also the mattress is available in different sizes. The length is always 200 cm, but the width ranges from 80, 90, 140 or 160. So you can get different sizes depending on if you live alone or like your mattress ot be larger.

Two types of people who’ll enjoy the Hamarvik mattress

The mattress is suitable for many people, but I think the following people will get the most out of the mattress. See if you identify:

  • People who want a temporary mattress –  since the mattress is cheap, it’s a perfect option if you want a mattress now, but wouldn’t care too much if you had to move in a year and couldn’t take the mattress.
  • People with kids – since kids grow fast, and accidents can happen that spoil the mattress, getting a cheaper mattress is a good choice.

Four advantages

Non expensive mattress

We’ve already touched on this in the previous paragraph. This is the main selling point from the mattress. It’s cheaper than the Hovag mattress (which we previously discussed), and more expensive than the Hyllestad mattress.

Bonnell springs for good support

Bonnell springs are springs that have been used for long times in mattresses. They might not be as comfortable as memory foam, but it’s a solid option if you’re looking for a mattress that supports your weight. One of the benefits is that they have plenty of space in between the coils, so that you won’t sleep as hot as you might do on a more expensive mattress.

Soft layer on top for comfort

The only downside of Bonnell springs is that they can be too uncomfortable to sleep on. Ikea has solved this problem by adding a soft layer on top for extra comfort. This means that you’ll be able to sleep with the right support AND comfort for your body.

Note: comfort depends on your body composition, sleep position and other preferences. More on that later in this Ikea Hamarvik mattress review.)

Warranty 25 years

With Ikea you’ve got the pleasure of dealing with a reputable company. That’s why you get a warranty of 25 years. So in the case something happens that’s not your fault, you can call Ikea and get it fixed.

Also important to notice is that you get a 90 night sleeping trial. Which means that you can try out the mattress in the comfort of your own home. Benefits of this? That you won’t have to quickly *test* the mattress in store with hundreds of people passing by. You’ll get some quality time to sleep on the mattress and see how it fits for you.

Downsides of the Ikea Hamarvik mattress:

Softer than advertised

Many people have noticed that the mattress is a bit softer that noticed. Medium feels like soft and firm feels like medium. This effect gets more pronounced after several weeks of sleeping on it. So keep this in mind when ordering 😉

Might sag after several years

Bonnell springs are known to sag when there’s continuous applied pressure on them for a long period of time. This can happen to the mattress. It’s uncomfortable if there’s a spot that doesn’t have the same level and support anymore after a while.

Might need a mattress topper

Ikea has done everything to make the mattress as comfortable as possible. However, for this price there simply isn’t it too much that they can do. That’s why the mattress might be uncomfortable for some people. (mainly if you sleep on your back or are on the heavier side). In That case it might be worthwhile to invest in a mattress topper that will give you extra comfort.

Delivery costs

So many mattress companies deliver for free nowadays. Unfortunately, if you get the Hamarvik mattress, you’ll pay for delivery. This depends on where  you’re located, but I have to pay at least 20 euros o get it delivered.

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So how about alternatives?

“Here are the top 3 mattresses I recommend.”


Nectar memory foam 

Mattress offers great support for your body. Made from 100% memory foam for comfort. Offers a 365 night trial for you to test it yourself. Lifetime warranty.

4.7 of 5 StarsGet $100 off#2

Nest Bedding Hybrid 

Premium bed for an affordable price. Suitable for back, stomach and side sleepers. 100 night trial and a lifetime warranty. Can be pricey, but worth it.

4.2 of 5 StarsSee price#3

Amerisleep AS1

Luxury mattress with a celliant cover fabric for improved bloodflow. Thick support layer and great motion isolation. 100 night trial and 20 year warranty.

4 of 5 StarsGet $200 off

Final thoughts Ikea Hamarvik mattress review

The Ikea Hamarvik mattress is a solid choice if you’re on a budget. You’ll be able to get a solid mattress that you can get good sleep on for an affordable price. The downsides? It might not be as comfortable as a more expensive mattress. Also, if you’re planning to sleep o the mattress for the next 10 years, I wholeheartedly recommend you invest more money into it. After all, you sleep for ⅓ of your life and the couple extra hundred dollars you’d spend will pay you back in better quality of life.

P.S. Enjoyed reading this Ikea Hamarvik mattress review? But do you want a mattress with better quality? Then I recommend you check out the Nectar mattress. It’s more expensive, but it will definitely give you better sleep quality and more comfort. Plus they have a sale right now where you get $125 off! Order the Nectar mattress now!

Sleep Related

Slumber Solutions vs Casper: Which of These Is Right for You?

Are you wondering if you should get a Slumber Solutions vs Casper mattress? It’s a common comparison that people think about. Today we’re going to discuss both mattresses and see which is the better choice.

Now, since everyone is different and has different preferred sleeping habits, what might be the best choice for you, might not be the best choice for the majority of people. That’s why I want you to ask yourself what you prefer in a mattress. Armed with this knowledge, it will be 10 times easier to come to the right conclusion.

Slumber Solutions vs Casper

Before we check all the differences between the 2 mattresses, let’s first check which similarities there are between the mattresses. That will make it easier for you to see if any of them fits with what you are looking for.

Both the Slumber Solutions and Casper mattresses can be bought online and have many happy customers. So you’d be good to go with each of them.

Slumber Solutions: wide variety of choice

Now, the main difference is that Slumber Solutions offers a wide variety of different mattresses. All these mattresses are in the medium price range, which means that – while they’re not cheap as some Walmart mattresses – they’re also not as expensive as some other brands. The Slumber Solutions mattresses are made from quality materials and you’d be hard pressed to wrong with any of them.

Most customers are very happy with their purchase. For example, on you can see more than 4000 reviews of customers. out of those 4000, 80% was very satisfied with their mattress purchase.

Most of them report that they sleep well on the mattress. Some even say that it’s better than some of the more expensive brand mattresses that they bought before. the brand isn’t too widely known (they don’t spend a lot of money on advertising), and it might be a bit of a leap of faith buying a Slumber Solutions mattress, but you will probably be happy with it.

You can order Slumber Solutions mattresses on Amazon. The most popular ones there are the gel memory foam mattresses, as they offer great comfort and support for the price. They’re available in different sizes, ranging from twin to king.

You can also get their mattress topper, which als gets great reviews on Amazon.

Check the price of the Slumber Solutions mattress here!

Casper: solid mattress

Casper is a great choice if you do not want to spend much time comparing different mattresses. They have just 1 mattress, which is suited for the majority of people.

The Casper mattress is a premium latex foam mattress, which makes it incredibly comfortable to sleep on. What will surprise you when you sleep on it, is that it hits the sweet spot between not too soft and also not too firm.

If you’ve slept on mattresses before that were either too firm or too soft for you, then the Casper mattress will surprise you.

the customer service from Casper is also up to par. Luckily, I haven’t had to deal with it, but one thing they do for example, is take away your old mattress ifneeded. This can save you quite some trouble from trying to get rid of it (especially if you live in an apartment building.

It’s a small thing, but it shows how Casper takes care of its customers.

The mattress can be bought in virtually every size, from twin to california king. So you won’t have to worry about that.

Also, Casper mattress has a great edge support. So if you enjoy that when getting up in the morning (or laying down at night), then this can be very comfortable and nice.

The great thing about Casper as well is that they offer a sleeping trial. So you can try out the mattress in the comfort of your own home. This makes it much easier to make a decision as you can actually see how you sleep on the mattress. And if you find you do not enjoy it – no problem, you can simplys end the mattress back and continue your search.

The only persons I wouldn’t recommend Casper to is if you tend to sleep very hot (also outside of summer). In that case I’d recommend you get a mattress that focuses on more airflow, that decreases the temperature. Also, if you’re looking for a mattress that is not medium firm, then you’re better of not picking Casper.

Check the price of the Casper mattress here!

Decision guidelines

Maybe you’ve already made a decision which mattress (Slumber Solutions vs Casper) is the better choice for you. If you haven’t yet, then here’s an overview of some questions that will help you make the right decision:

  • Do you prefer top-notch customer service? Then choose Casper.
  • Do you want comfortable mattresses for affordable prices? Pick Slumber Solutions.
  • Want to keep things simple? Pick Casper.
  • Do you want good edge support on the edges of the mattress? Casper again.

Final thoughts Slumber Solutions vs Casper

So, that’s it on slumber solutions vs Casper. In general, I think most people would be better off picking Casper, as it’s more versatile for the majority of people. It also takes away the choice stress that Slumber Solutions has. This latest thing can also be a good thing if you know exactly what you want: then you can shop around for Slumber Solutions mattresses and see which one suits your sleeping style better.

if you have any questions, feel free to leave them in the comments. Also, check out the following links for more information about each company and mattresses. There you’ll find extra knowledge and useful facts about the mattresses.

Learn more about the Casper mattress!

Learn more about Slumber Solutions!

P.S. having a tough time making a decision? In that case I recommend you go for Casper, as it’s more appealing to the majority of people. Plus they have a sleeping trial, so even if you decide it’s not for you, you can still change it.

Sleep Related

What Causes Melatonin Nightmares? (+ 3 Solutions)

melatonin nightmares

Thousands of people around the world take melatonin to experience wild dreams. But what if you need to take melatonin to fall asleep, but experience horrible nightmares? Why does this happen? And what can you do to stop them? In this article we’ll discuss why melatonin nightmares happen and what you can do prevent them (while still taking melatonin).

Melatonin is a natural hormone in your brain that signals your brain and body that it’s time to shut down and go to sleep. This is great if everything works perfectly. But if you do not produce enough melatonin for some reason, then you lay in bed unable to fall asleep. Or you only get tired by 3 AM while you need to be at work at 9. Taking melatonin as a supplement can be incredibly helpful in these situations.

That is, unless you wake up drenched in sweat because of your extremely vivid nightmare. That you otherwise wouldn’t experience without melatonin.

Melatonin nightmares: why do you get them?

In my article about melatonin and its effect on dreams I discussed 3 theories why melatonin increases your dream-ability and chance of lucid dreaming. In that article I’m speaking to the audience who want to INCREASE the weird dreams. However, the theories behind it work the same. here they are:

  1. Melatonin increases your time in REM sleep – the more REM time, the more time to experience dreams. Hence you statistically have  more chance of experiencing a nightmare.
  2. Melatonin makes you sleep deeper – sleeping better also increases the depth of your REM sleep. The deeper this is, the more intense your dreams can feel.
  3. Melatonin causes REM rebound – which type of people are most likely to take melatonin? Exactly. Those with sleep problems. When you finally do sleep well (with the help of melatonin), you’re REM-deprived brain will take every opportunity to get as much of it as possible.

if you’re looking for more information behind these theories (and sources), go check my melatonin dreams article.

it’s very well possible that these 3 theories work together to create the melatonin nightmares effect.

Why do some people get nightmares and others have nice dreams? I don’t know. I guess it’s the natural distribution and that some people are just more predisposed to nightmares than others.

If you’ve suffered trauma, then this often already comes up in dreams without melatonin. So when taking melatonin, this might be intensified.

Can you stop melatonin nightmares?

There are 2 keys to stopping melatonin nightmares. The first one lies in regular nightmare treatment. Here’s what the mayo clinic has to say about lifestyle remedies for treating nightmares:

Establish a regular, relaxing routine before bedtime. A consistent bedtime routine is important. Do quiet, calming activities — such as reading books, doing puzzles or soaking in a warm bath — before bed. Meditation, deep breathing or relaxation exercises may help, too. Also, make the bedroom comfortable and quiet for sleep.

Offer reassurances. If your child is struggling with nightmares, be patient, calm and reassuring. After your child awakens from a nightmare, respond quickly and soothe your child at the bedside. This may prevent future nightmares.

Talk about the dream. Ask your child to describe the nightmare. What happened? Who was in the dream? What made it scary? Then remind your child that nightmares aren’t real and can’t hurt you.

Rewrite the ending. Imagine a happy ending for the nightmare. For your child, you may encourage him or her to draw a picture of the nightmare, “talk” to the characters in the nightmare or write about the nightmare in a journal. Sometimes a little creativity can help.

Put stress in its place. If stress or anxiety is an issue, talk about it. Practice some simple stress-relief activities, such as deep breathing or relaxation. A mental health professional can help, if needed.

Provide comfort measures. Your child might feel more secure if he or she sleeps with a favorite stuffed animal, blanket or other comfort object. Leave your child’s door open at night so that he or she won’t feel alone. Leave your door open, too, in case your child needs comfort during the night.

Use a night light. Keep a night light on in your child’s room. If your child wakes up during the night, the light may be reassuring.

The second key has to do with melatonin itself. I did a lot of research on how to invoke melatonin dreams. So it makes sense that if you want to not have them, you just need to do the opposite.

Take small doses

Most people who accidentally stumble upon the effect of melatonin on dreams take large doses. Ten milligrams is no unheard of. For some reason in the U.S. manufacturers put way too large dosages in their melatonin pills.

Starters should better take half a milligram. Melatonin does not become more effective if you just take a little. The fall-asleep-effect gets cut off somewhere after half to one mg. Unless you’re looking to get crazy dreams.

So be sure to check your dosage per pill (especially if you’re in the USA). And look for a brand that has small dosages.

Take it regularly

People looking for wild melatonin dreams, often report that it loses its effect after taking it for a while. Maybe they get used to the dreams, or there is an adaptation in the brain against such vivid dreaming. I don’t know.

But you can use this knowledge to your advantage if you want to get rid of melatonin nightmares. Taking a little bit on a regular basis can help you. Maybe you’ll get nightmares the first couple of nights, but after that things will slow down. You’ll still experience the sleepy effect, just without nightmares.

Don’t sleep in

REM sleep is predominantly present in the second half of the night. The first half is mainly for deep sleep.

I know that my most vivid dreams are always there on weekend nights. I still wake up at 8 (habit from the working week), but often choose to get another 1.5 – 2 hour sleep. During this part my dreams are the most intense and I recall them best.

So for melatonin nightmares, it’s best to skip this phase.

Final thoughts

What are your experiences with melatonin and hangovers? What did you do to make them less intense? Let us know in the comments!

Sleep Related

To Which Doctor Should You Go if You Suffer From Insomnia?

insomnia doctor

Did you lay awake last night for at least an hour before you could finally fall asleep? Then you might have insomnia. It’s becoming more prevalent in society every year. some say the culprit are smartphones, others say there is something else at play. While we don’t know for sure what is causing the global increase in insomnia, we do know different cures for it. And who knows them better than the insomnia doctor?

Most cases of insomnia can be solved by taking the right measures. However, not all of them. Some people have such a persistent insomnia that they it’s’ better to go see a doctor.

Which doctor is an insomnia doctor?

The right doctor to go to is a doctor who’s sleep medicine certified. The American Board of Sleep Medicine is the medical board that provides these certifications. Physicians and PhD’s who have passed the board’s qualifications are certified to have a high quality standard in sleep medicine.

In short, these are doctors that can help you treat insomnia. It’s important to treat this, because if you don’t get the right amount of sleep that you need, then this increases your chances of (chronic) health conditions or accidents.

When to go to an insomnia doctor?

The first step to take if you have sleep problems is to see your regular GP. Often a quick consultation with him or her can pinpoint the issue. Your doctor can give you tips and treatment strategies that make it easier for you to fall asleep.

They can recommend you to make certain changes in your life, sleep habits or overall lifestyle. It’s also possible that you’re taking specific medication that makes it difficult to fall asleep. If this is the case,then your doctor can see this issue and resolve it (either by recommending other medication o changing your regime).

If the first treatment strategies from your GP do not work, then your doctor can refer you to a specialist (the insomnia doctor).

If your child has insomnia, then it’s a good idea to go see a pediatrician.

Insomnia can be caused by many different factors

There are many root causes of insomnia. Each patient is different and therefore it’s difficult to find a one-size-fits-all solution for falling asleep. Here are some types of factors that can cause insomnia:

  • Lifestyle factors
  • Brain chemical imbalance

Different doctors who can help with insomnia

Since there are different causes of insomnia, not every person who suffers from it goes to the same doctor. Different causes require different specialisations.

For example. for most lifestyle factors can be solved by a quick talk with your GP. Lifestyle factors can be that your sleep habits are out of order, and that you may need to keep a balanced lifestyle in order to fall asleep faster. If you (try to) go to bed during the week at 11, but at the weekends stay up until 4, then this might be a factor in your disrupted circadian rhythm.

It’s also very well possible that some underlying condition i your brain is causing insomnia. Most people with bipolar disorder, for example, also suffer from insomnia. If you suspect it’s more than just your lifestyle, it might be a good idea to talk to a psychologist or psychiatrist.

You can also be referred to neurologist. This doctor has intensive experience with disorders in your brain and nervous system. If you have an imbalance between specific chemicals in your brain (for example dopamine), then this can cause insomnia. A neurologist can prescribe specific medicine that will help you with this imbalance.

Some easy home tips to fall asleep faster

While I recommend you to go see your doctor if you have insomnia, it can never hurt to try some home remedies. As long as you stick to the tried and proven ones.

Here are some tips and strategies that might work for your insomnia. It’s important to realize that several small wins can add up to victory. If a technique makes you fall asleep 5 minutes faster, then that may not sound like a lot. Compound this together with some other tips that also decrease your fall asleep time by 5 minutes – and you might find yourself falling asleep half an hour or more earlier.

Check your sleeping environment

Is there a big street lantern light shining into your room at night? Is there a lot of dust underneath your bed? Or do you sleep next to a big busy road? All these factors can make it more difficult to fall asleep. Or they frequently wake you up at night. Even though you cannot physically move the lamp or road, there are solution for these problems.

Install blackout curtains. Buy some quality ear plugs that are made for sleeping (so they don’t bother you). Clean the bedroom once every month completely.

Electronics away

When you’re laying in bed, unable to fall asleep, it can be so tempting to read some articles on the internet on your phone. Harmless right? Unless you get that alarming work email or notification at 12.30 from a colleague who’s working through the night to get that project finished. Now you’re thinking about work tomorrow. And how you’re already behind schedule. And how you need o be fresh tomorrow to get all that work done. And how you need a good night’s’ rest to be productive tomorrow. Which you’re not getting. Which is stressing you out.

Do away with all electronics in the bedroom. Get an old-fashioned alarm clock. And install a blue-light blocker on your phone and computer. Also, don’t hang a TV in the bedroom. All these distractions are not helping your insomnia.

Sleep doctor infal thoughts

It’s a good idea to see your doctor if you have insomnia. He’ll be able to pinpoint the reason why you can’t sleep much more accurately than 50 articles on the internet for insomnia tips. He’ll give you some strategies that work for your specific case – or else he’ll refer you to an insomnia doctor. Who can help you treat your insomnia even better.