Sleep and Depression (cont.)

Psychotherapy can also address coping skills to improve a person's ability to fall asleep.

What Other Techniques Can Help Me Sleep?

In addition to trying medications, here are some tips to improve sleep:

  • Learn relaxation and deep breathing techniques.
  • Clear your head of concerns by writing a list of activities that need to be completed the next day and tell yourself you'll think about it tomorrow.
  • Get regular exercise, no later than a few hours before bedtime.
  • Don't use caffeine, alcohol, or nicotine in the evening.
  • Don't lie in bed tossing and turning.
  • Get out of bed and do something in another room when you cant sleep.
  • Go back to bed when you're feeling drowsy.
  • Use the bed only for sleeping and sexual activity.
  • Don't lie in bed to watch TV or read. This way, your bed becomes a cue for sleeping, not for lying awake.

Reviewed by The Sleep Medicine Center at The Cleveland Clinic.

Edited by Michael J. Breus, PhD, WebMD, September 2004.

Portions of this page © The Cleveland Clinic 2000-2005
Last Editorial Review: 6/20/2005