How can I sleep well with ADHD?
Last Updated: 05/21/2018 at 11:09am
Polly Letsch, LCSW
Clinical Social Work/Therapist
I provide non-judgmental, person-centered, objective therapeutic treatment for individuals of all ages to improve social, emotional, mental and other areas of functioning.
Top Rated Answers
There are soooo many things that can help but some of the most important things are actually what you do throughout the day. As soon as you wake up, try to get some sunshine for 5-10 minutes and do a quickie workout for 5 minutes. This increases cortisol and lowers melatonin, telling your body that morning is the time to wake up and that you should go to sleep about 16 hours later. Make sure to get plenty of exercise, as people with ADHD often need more than the typical person in order to feel tired later. And avoid caffeine (I know, but it's true!) after 1pm. Do these things, along with creating a bedtime routine that triggers your brain it's time to sleep, and it will help improve your sleep quality AND quantity. Remember that it may take a few weeks to adjust, so keep at it!
If you visit a doctor, often they'll prescribe you with something that will help you with sleeping if they think it's necessary (A lot of people with ADHD struggle with sleep so they do have to get prescription to help). Other more natural things you could try out are things like lavender sprays on your pillow, drinking warm milk before you go to sleep and some people find reading a book helps them sleep! :-)
You should check out the self-help guide on sleeping well if you haven't already! 7cups.com/sleeping-well/ Have you tried banana tea? I find that this makes me fall asleep very quickly.
When you get to bed, tell yourself that it is time to sleep now. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing completely. This is a simple kind of meditation. Listen to sleep music. You can find plenty on YouTube. It'll lower the amount of brain waves, hence relaxing the body and mind. Caution: Do not listen to Binaural Beats. Those are used for hypnosis. We would not want you to self hypnotise yourself into something.
I understand trying to get some much needed sleep but your ADHD is flaring. Have you tried like a soft noise in the background? Playing some music? Also I heard that audio books were wonderful for those trying to fall asleep. Get creative with many things and maybe write down and keep track of what works and don't. Good luck!
If you believe that ADHD affects your sleep quality consult a physician and a specialist to see what can be done.
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