Insomnia is thought to regularly affect around one in every three people in the UK, and is particularly common in elderly people. If you struggle to get a good night's sleep, here are six top buys on Amazon that could make all the difference.
See also: Six ways to beat insomnia without medication
See also: How to combat insomnia as you age
1. Mask the sound with white noise
Intermittent noise is particularly bad for those with insomnia, as you become hyper vigilant about when the next disturbance is going to come. White noise at the right pitch can block out other sounds and make it easier to sleep. The Marpac Dohm DS Dual Speed Sound Conditioner emits a soft, comfortable background sound that masks other noises, and can even help those with tinnitus.
2. Block out the light
Even a small amount of light can interfere with your body's melatonin production – bad news for insomniacs, as melatonin is the hormone that signals the body to sleep. Blackout curtains can help but if you're going on holiday or have to travel for work, you won't always know how dark the room is until you've already suffered a sleepless night.
The solution? Invest in portable blackout blinds. The Easynight Portable Travel Blackout Blind fits windows up to 1.45m x 2m, portrait or landscape and is lightweight and easy to fix using the special suction cups and Velcro fastenings. It folds away between uses and comes in a carry bag, so is easy to sling in the car or your suitcase.
3. Wear a sleep mask
If fixing blackout blinds to the window sounds like too much trouble, you could always wear an eye mask. It's worth paying a bit extra for one that's comfortable to wear and fits well.
The Premium Sleep Mask by MemorySoft has a 3-D contour shape that allows you to open your eyes, while the thin memory foam layer is soft, light and easy to adjust, so you can sleep in comfort.
4. The Sleep Book
There are lots of experts giving advice on how to beat insomnia. The Sleep Book, £7.99, takes a practical approach with a five-week plan that combines mindfulness and new ACT therapy techniques. Author Dr Guy Meadows developed his pioneering methods at The Sleep School clinic after spending more than 12,000 hours working with more than 2,000 insomniacs in one-to-one clinics, workshops and retreat environments.
5. Hypnotise yourself
Stress can keep you awake at night – and not sleeping makes you feel stressed. It's a vicious circle. While taking up yoga and learning to meditate are both good ways to relax, listening to a self-hypnosis CD has achieved positive results for many. Paul McKenna's book 'I Can Make You Sleep' with CD, £12.99, has received good reviews on Amazon and has to be worth a try.
6. Keep cool with a fan
If you find it hard to sleep in the heat, consider running a fan in the bedroom. (If it's really hot, place some ice in an oven tray and position it in front of the fan to cool the room.) As well as keeping you cool, a fan will provide comforting white noise that will help to reduce any nuisance noise around you. The Honeywell QuietSet Table Fan, £44.99, is fairly quiet to run, so won't keep you awake.