Struggling to fall asleep every night as a teen? Follow these 10 sleep hacks to understand how to get better sleep as a teenager!
Keep in mind, everyone has a different way of going to sleep. Some of these tips may not apply to you if you have certain sleep conditions or different sleep environments.
For example, a big factor in poor sleep is your stress levels. If you’re not working on reducing your stress (easier said than done), these tips might not benefit you (assuming stress is a main contributor to your poor sleep).
Before we get into the sleep hacks, let’s discuss why it’s important to even get adequate sleep as a teenager…
Why You Need Better Sleep as a Teenager
It might seem obvious that getting enough sleep during the night would have one benefit… it makes you less tired during the day.
Although this can be true, there are actually a ton of things that adequate sleep does for you. Here are a few benefits to getting better sleep as a teen:
- Boosts your immune system
- Increased productivity
- Better memory
- Positive moods
- Proper muscle recovery
- Clears your mind
Those are just a few of the many benefits you can feel from sleeping a decent amount of hours.
Sleep quality is important for everyone. After all, sleep takes up nearly a third of our lives!
So how can you actually work on yourself to eventually lead to better sleep?
Set a Date
The first, and most important, thing to do when you want to start working on your sleep is to set a date.
Set a date for when you want to start and stick to that date as best as you can. That’s the only way you’ll actually commit to working on it!
If you just tell yourself that you’re going to start going to bed earlier, you’re likely not going to follow through. Having a plan will help organize your life a bit better.
What you need to figure out:
- A start date
- A set time to go to bed
- A set time to wake up
Fix Your Sleep Schedule
Fixing your sleep schedule is a crucial step to get better sleep as a teenager. With wacky hours and long nights, it’s nearly impossible to feel well-rested.
Fixing your schedule doesn’t happen overnight, so start slow.
Try reducing the time you go to bed by 30 minutes every 2 days until you reach your desired time. Ex: If you currently go to bed at 2 a.m., set a sleep time for 1:30 a.m., and then 1 a.m. two days after that.
Give yourself 1 day a week to naturally wake up without an alarm. This is a good way to test if you’re actually feeling well rested without being forced to wake up.
Related Post: How to Fix Your Sleep Schedule
When you think sleep, you think night time. However, a lot of your preparation for the night actually happens in the morning.
Here are a few things you need to do in the mornings:
- Wake up at the same time everyday
- Have a morning routine
- Leave your blinds open (allow sunlight in)
- Put your alarm away from your bed
- Plan for a nice breakfast, early exercise, or some fun activity
When you implement all these elements into your mornings, you are setting yourself up to feel amazing the night before you wake up.
Pro tip: Drink a tall glass of water (or tea if it’s easier) right after you wake up to rehydrate yourself and flush out all your morning toxins.
If you have trouble falling asleep, you might be doing things during your night to set yourself up for failure.
If you’re constantly on some sort of electronic device right before you go to bed, you are allowing blue light to enter your eyes too late in the day.
Blue light is the type of light that radiates a high amount of energy from electronic screens and is prone to keeping our brain awake.
Having a night routine will literally make your brain think it’s time for bed. If you go to sleep every night right after doing something (brushing your teeth, reading, changing clothes, etc.) you’ll trigger yourself to get tired naturally.
In summary, avoid electronics at all costs (at least 30 minutes before bed) and create a little routine that you do every night before sleeping.
Related Post: Daily Routine for Teenage Guys and Teenage Girls
Your last 30 minutes of the day is the most important 30 minutes to get better sleep as a teenager.
This is your time to wind down, have some alone time, and reduce all outside distractions from your life.
If you can, put your phone and computer far away from you (preferably upside down too) so you don’t check notifications or get convinced to stay up so late.
Dim the lights in your room (or turn them off completely) and get your night routine going. After that, hop into the bed and just relax your mind. It’s probably been running around all day and it needs a break of its own.
Change Your Alarm Sound
Believe it or not, but some people are afraid to fix their sleep schedule just because of their annoying alarm sound. I get it, they suck.
We get pissed off by our alarm sounds everyday, but somehow we never think to change it!
If your alarm is set on your phone, go into your alarm settings and change up the alarm sound once in a while. It’ll give you a refreshing feeling when you wake up instead of an aggravating sensation.
Do you have an iPhone? If you do, I highly recommend changing your alarm sound to “slow rise” for a while. It’s extremely peaceful to wake up to.
Finish Your Tasks Early
Try to get your homework done as soon as possible. This way, you avoid staying up late which will cut into your hours of sleep.
Understand that you’re going to get a lot of homework on some days or have some sort of practice/club that gets pushed into the night.
That’s okay! As long as you’re actively trying to stay on top of it, I trust you to organize your schedule properly.
The point is, leave your free time for later in the day. It’s a lot more worth it to tackle your stressful assignments right after school and winding down towards the night.
Related Post: How to Stay Busy as a Teenager
Start Your Day With Something You Love
Doing something we’re passionate about will always get us motivated to start the day.
We’ve all felt it before… that feeling when you have to wake up early, but you’re so excited to get up because you’re going on a vacation or have a big day with friends.
While you may not be able to go on vacation every single day, there are plenty of things that you’re excited to check every morning.
Maybe your favorite Youtuber posts a video every morning that you’re excited to watch as you eat breakfast. Any little thing helps, so pick something you love to do, watch, or eat, and get excited for it every morning.
This will not only incentivize you to want to go to sleep early (so you can start the next day already), but it’ll also make you happy to get out of bed as quickly as possible!
Get in Enough Exercise
You may not notice it, but a good workout during the day can actually lead you to being exhausted at night (in a good way).
As a teenager, you might have a lot of pent up energy that you don’t even notice because you never try to release it.
If you don’t release that energy everyday, it’ll stick with you throughout your entire day. And guess when it likes to act up again… at night!
Exercising regularly will reduce that jitteriness you might feel before bed and get you to wind down as you start off your night routine.
Related Post: Full Body Workout for Teenagers at Home
The Time You Go to Bed Matters
There’s a common misconception that, as long as you get 8 hours of sleep, it doesn’t matter what time you go to bed.
While 8 hours of sleep is definitely recommended, those 8 hours could feel like 2 hours if you’re going to bed extremely late.
To put it into simpler terms: Going to bed from 10 pm-6 am is much better than going to bed from 3am-11am.
There are countless amounts of studies proving this, including ones on high school students and the correlation between their sleep and grades.
Hopefully these 10 sleep hacks have shown you how to get better sleep as a teenager! Again, everyone has different factors that contribute to their quality of sleep. I highly recommend you give these tips a try regardless.
If you have any comments, questions, or suggestions leave them down below. Thanks for reading!