Run out of sheep to count? Drank all of the chamomile tea in your cupboards? Unfortunately, catching 40 winks doesn’t come easy for everyone.
Most experts agree that, on average, we need between seven and nine hours of sleep – and when we don’t sleep enough, the impact on our health can be severe.
So if you’re struggling and have tried all of the traditional remedies, it might be time to harness the power of technology.
Which sleep podcasts and apps can help you sleep?
Apps and podcasts for better sleep
Podcasts can help us to sleep with the help of soothing soundscapes, bedtime stories, and ASMR.
So, what are some of the top 10 to try out?
Sleep With Me
Drew Ackerman created Sleep with Me back in 2013, and the podcast has produced new episodes twice-weekly since.
Ackerman leads the listener through dull, overlong stories, complete with plenty of asides and tangents, all while maintaining a flat monotone – perfect to send you adrift.
Sleep With Me can be accessed through the website, or through Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and Spotify.
Slow Radio, BBC Radio 3
Described as an ‘antidote to today’s frenzied world,’ BBC Radio 3’s podcast is split into episodes that each tap into a different audio world, bringing listeners soundscapes from around the planet.
Episodes promise a mix of music and natural sounds, from the parks of Madrid, to the southern tip of Exmoor National Park or a tiny Scottish Hamlet to the coastal paths of Devon, via Antwerp and Kenya.
Episodes are available through the BBC website or through Apple Podcasts.
Nothing Much Happens
A bedtime story where there’s no risk of you getting too hooked by a cliff-hanger to drift off.
Through Nothing Much Happens, yoga and meditation teacher Kathryn Nicolai tells bedtime stories where, as the name suggests, nothing much happens.
The stories are a soft landing spot for your mind. Rather than letting your brain race through the same thoughts you’ve been chasing all day, you’re taken on a detour to slow down and slip into a slumber.
The podcast is available through Apple Podcasts and Google Podcasts.
A ‘does what it says on the tin’ podcast, relax and fall asleep with Get Sleepy’s combination of sleep meditation, followed by a calming story that lets you drift off.
Get Sleepy is a twice weekly story-telling podcast that is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and Spotify.
Sleep Whispers is a podcast of whispered readings and ramblings for relaxation and sleeping.
Enjoy a calming moment with soothing meditations, interesting stories, tranquil poems, educational Wikipedia articles, and listener feedback.
Available through the Sleep Whispers website, Apple Podcasts and Spotify.
Send Me to Sleep
Send me to Sleep is the podcast that helps you calm your mind and fall into a peaceful night’s sleep, without even noticing.
From bedtime sleep stories to sleep meditation, the podcast delivers new weekly episodes.
Find it on all podcasting platforms including Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Google Podcasts.
Game of Drones
Drew Ackerman – mastermind behind Sleep with Me, also featured on our list – turns his monotonic way of telling a story and introduces it to the world of George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones.
Game of Drones recaps the events of the series and adding in copious (often completely irrelevant) asides and extra detail to really get your brain to stop focusing.
Not quite a podcast, but Headspace have a plethora of soundscapes and stories that are designed to send you to sleep.
Sleepcasts are ever-changing stories told in a range of soothing voices, and include stories like Rainy Day Antiques where you are guided through a quiet, cosy shop on a rainy day.
Metro.co.uk have partnered with Headspace in the past for Mindfulness with Metro, for tips on mindful eating to working on compassion.
You can trial Headspace for free for 14 days, and then pay either £4.17 per month or £49.99 per year. Headspace can be downloaded on the App store or Google Play.
Boring Books for Bedtime
Boring Books for Bedtime calls itself ‘a quiet little podcast for a noisy world, and you are very welcome here.’
Welcoming, warm and with plenty of soothing stories, new episodes come weekly.
You can listen on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or through the Boring Books for Bedtime player.
You Must Remember This
Not a podcast to send you to sleep per se, You Must Remember This is, instead, something to just relax with.
Even if you don’t quite drift off, Karina Longworth’s stories about Old Hollywood glamour, scandals and more are sure to clear your mind of any modern-day stresses.
For her in-depth work, the podcast won the 2021 iHeartRadio Podcast Awards in TV & Film and was picked the Best Podcast of 2020 by TIME, Rolling Stone, Teen
Vogue, IndieWire and Vulture.
Listen to the podcast through the You Must Remember website, or on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or Spotify.
If you like these, don’t forget to check out Metro.co.uk’s Mentally Yours podcast, a weekly mental health podcast.
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