Got coronasomnia? These sleep tools can help

·6 min read

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This sleep products can help you nod off—and stay asleep. (Photo: Amazon)
This sleep products can help you nod off—and stay asleep. (Photo: Amazon)

Sleep is a crucial part of health no matter what's going on in the outside world. But, during the pandemic, plenty of people have struggled to consistently fall asleep and stay asleep. That's even sparked a new term: coronasomnia.

Coronasomnia, which is another word for insomnia tied to the pandemic, isn't just a catch phrase—it's a real problem. "We're definitely seeing more people who are struggling," board-certified sleep medicine researcher Dr. W. Christopher Winter, of Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine and author of The Sleep Solution: Why Your Sleep Is Broken and How to Fix It, tells Yahoo Life.

There's a lot that's fueling coronasomnia, Winter says. He cites sitting in front of screens more, isolation, messed-up routines, and—of course—stress, as potential issues. And, while sleep is always important, Winter says it's especially crucial during a global pandemic. Getting good, regular sleep helps strengthen your immune system and also helps promote good mental health—two crucial factors everyone could use more of these days.

If you're struggling with sleep, Winter says it's important to first check your sleep hygiene. That is, the things you're doing to help create the best environment possible to help you fall asleep and stay that way through the night. That includes doing things like reserving your bedroom for sleep and intimacy, keeping your bedroom cool at night, avoiding screens before bed, having consistent sleep and wake times, being physically active during the day to help you conk out at night and avoiding large meals, caffeine and alcohol before bed.

But there are plenty of sleep-promoting tools out there to help you fight coronasomnia, too. Here are some of the best.

A Reliable Noise Machine: Douni Sleep Sound Machine

Choose from 24 different sounds. (Photo: Amazon)
Choose from 24 different sounds. (Photo: Amazon)

Using a sound machine at night can "help people to quiet down intense thoughts that they're having," Winter says. A sound machine can also help "create a uniform sleep environment" and block out extra noise, setting up a serene sleep environment. If you use one regularly, the sound can also be a cue that it's time to sleep, he says.

This sound machine from Douni features 24 different sound, including ocean waves, thunder, crickets, campfire and white noise. It also features a 30, 60 and 90-minute sleep timer, and comes encased in a chic wood-grain finish. "I love how small it is, how sophisticated it looks and, most importantly, how it sounds and performs," a five-star fan wrote in the reviews.

Shop it: Douni Sleep Sound Machine, $26 (was $34), amazon.com

A Weighted Blanket: Bedsure Weighted Blanket

Get wrapped up in this. (Photo: Amazon)
Get wrapped up in this. (Photo: Amazon)

Weighted blankets have gotten props for years for their sleep-inducing abilities, but Winter says they can be especially useful right now. "What's disappeared in the midst of the pandemic is touch, hugging and embracing—the physical interactions we have with other people," he says. "Sometimes a weighted blanket can give the sense of embrace and comfort."

This blanket from Bedsure is available in weights ranging from three to 20 pounds, and comes in grey and navy. You'll love running your fingers over the blanket's embossed and smooth sides. A removable cover makes for easy washing. "I LOVE this blanket," a happy sleeper wrote in the reviews. "It is the perfect weight and the removable cover is super soft and easy to clean. I sleep with it every night and also plan to get another to keep on my couch."

Shop it: Bedsure Weighted Blanket, $65, amazon.com

Aromatherapy: Bath & Body Works Aromatherapy Sleep Lotion

This lotion has an army of fans. (Photo: Amazon)
This lotion has an army of fans. (Photo: Amazon)

Using aromatherapy can help calm your mind for bedtime, Winter says. "It works through a mental cycle of, 'When I smell this, it's time for bed,'" he explains. Research has found that the scent of lavender in particular can be soothing. "It's not froufrou," Winter says. "Using a particular fragrance, oil or lotion can help signal to your brain what you're supposed to do."

Bath & Body Works' Sleep lotion features the scents of lavender and vanilla in a lotion that's designed to be used before bed. "I love the sleep lotion. I put in on while getting ready for bed...and I go right to sleep," a five-star reviewer wrote. "Works better than melatonin."

Shop it: Bath & Body Works Aromatherapy Sleep Lotion, $15, amazon.com

A Blackout Sleep Mask: Mzoo Contoured Cup Sleeping Mask

Contoured cups keep pressure off your eyes. (Photo: Amazon)
Contoured cups keep pressure off your eyes. (Photo: Amazon)

Sleep masks can be a helpful way to ensure that you're ~actually~ sleeping in a dark environment, Winter says. "It give you more control over the darkness you're exposed to, and can be really helpful," he adds.

Of course, not all sleep masks are created equal—and some still let light in. Mzoo's bestselling mask has contoured cups to get a secure, comfy fit over your eyes. It also allows enough space for your eyes to blink. "This mask is amazing. So comfortable and blocks ALL ambient light," a fan wrote.

Shop it: Mzoo Contoured Cup Sleeping Mask, $17, amazon.com

Easy Meditations: Practicing Mindfulness

Meditating before bed can help you nod off easier. (Photo: Amazon)
Meditating before bed can help you nod off easier. (Photo: Amazon)

Meditating before bed can be a useful way to help calm your mind. "Developing this skill can be extremely helpful," Winter says. This bestselling book features 75 different exercises to help you chill out when you need it most.

"Mind blown! This book has been a stress reliever for me. It is very calming and it makes you think differently about the world around you," a happy meditator wrote in the reviews. Said another, "It really does bring me peace and calms me down so much."

Shop it: Practicing Mindfulness, $13, amazon.com

Comfortable New Sheets: LuxClub 6 Piece Bamboo Sheet Set

This sheets get props from reviewers for their comfort. (Photo: Amazon)
This sheets get props from reviewers for their comfort. (Photo: Amazon)

If struggling with sleep is a new issue for you, Winter recommends rethinking your routine around bed. "This is a great time to look at the entire sleep process you've got, including what you feel and smell," he says. "Even getting new sheets can help you feel rejuvenated in how you approach bedtime."

These bamboo sheets are soft, strong, fade-resistant and temperature regulating. They're also anti-pill and have extra deep pockets for memory foam or mattress toppers. Choose from a huge range of colors. "They’re smooth, soft and wrinkle free," a five-star reviewer wrote. "I washed them and placed them in the dryer prior to the first use, and they came out wrinkle free! I’m impressed and couldn’t be more satisfied. They are by far my favorite sheets to date."

Shop it: LuxClub 6 Piece Bamboo Sheet Set, $35 (was $57), amazon.com

The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.

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