Sometimes, it’s not easy to get back a good night's sleep after being woken up by a sudden noise or a bad dream. Instead of counting sheep (which isn’t as effective as you think), try these hacks that can easily get you drowsy.

1. Get out of bed.
It may seem counter-intuitive, but getting out of bed actually ups your chances of relaxing compared to tossing and turning in it. Richard Wiseman of the University of Hertfordshire in the UK recommends clearing your mind and doing simple tasks that will help you calm down. Just make sure to avoid your phone, the television, or any other screened devices that may overstimulate your brain and keep you awake.

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2. Take a warm shower.
Have you ever wondered why warm showers are so relaxing? Health Guidance explains that it’s due temperature shift. Hot showers or baths raise your body temperature, which gradually lowers after fifteen minutes. This change gets you drowsy and more primed for rest. Use bath products in your favorite scent for full relaxation.

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Try: Human Nature Scented Cleansing Bar in Clean Cotton (P74.75). Available online and in all Human Nature dealerships.

3. Drink milk.
The practice of drinking warm milk before bedtime has its roots in science, but not in ways that you would think. According to Livestrong, the initial theory is that the amino acid tryptophan aids in making you feel sleepy. However, several surveys have revealed that the reaction is more psychological than physiological: Warm milk brings back soothing thoughts of one’s mother, which encourages the brain to produce the chemical seratonin to relax the body. You can trigger that feeling of calmness with warm milk, or with any dairy drink you wish.

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Try: Jolly Cow Chocolate Drink made from 100% pure cow’s milk and real cocoa with less sugar, available in leading supermarkets.

4. Drink chamomile tea.
If you’re lactose-intolerant but would want a warm drink to help you wind down, chamomile tea is your best option. A study by Janmejai K. Srivastava, Eswar Shankar, and Sanjay Gupta on NCBI notes that chamomile has been traditionally used to “treat insomnia and induce sedation,” and is a widely known sleep-inducer due to the flavonoids it contains.

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Try: Starbucks Chamomile Tea, available in all Starbucks outlets.

5. Inhale relaxing aromas.

Aromatherapy may come in handy when you can’t help but toss and turn in bed. An article on Prevention says that a good choice would be lavender essential oil, which has been proven time and again to encourage a deep and restive slumber.

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Try The Tropical Shop’s Lavender Essential Oil with VCO, available in The Tropical Shop Kiosks in SM Megamall and SM Southmall.

6. Try progressive muscle relaxation.
Once you get back to bed, try being conscious of each and every muscle group. The Mayo Clinic explains it step by step: “Tense each muscle group for at least five seconds and then relax for up to 30 seconds. Repeat before moving to the next muscle group.” You’ll find that there are parts of you that are actually pretty tense, and once you consciously release the tension, you’ll feel more able to go back to sleep.

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