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What’s the best music to fall asleep to?

Written by Abbie Stutzer

Some people like to sleep in absolute still silence. Other people swear by sleeping near a white noice machine. And then there is a group of humans who enjoy falling asleep to music.

Although falling asleep to music may sound like a bad idea to many people, it’s not. In fact, if you fall asleep to the right music, you could greatly improve your rest, increase the duration of your sleep, or decrease any insomnia symptoms you may have.

Listening to Music Can Help Insomnia Sufferers Sleep

Although falling asleep to music can help any person drift of to dreamland with ease, multiple studies have found that people who suffer from insomnia, or insomnia symptoms, greatly benefit from listening to music at bedtime.

A 2015 study concluded that music could improve subjective sleep quality in adults who have insomnia symptoms. The research consisted of six studies and examined 314 participants total. Each study looked at the effect of listening to pre-recorded music daily, for 25 to 60 minutes. Participants listened to music for three days, and up to five weeks.

A 2014 study also found that music therapy can improve the sleep quality of adults who suffer from acute and chronic sleep disorders. The study analyzed 10 studies that examined how peoples’ sleep quality was improved by music.

And an older 2008 study that was published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing discovered that calm, classical music helped people sleep better, and also decreased depressive symptoms. The study examined three groups of study participants in 2006. The groups consisted of 94 students aged 19 through 28 years. All the students had sleep complaints. Group 1 listened to relaxing music for 45 minutes a night for 3 weeks, Group 2 listened to an audiobook for 45 minutes a night for 3 weeks, and Group 3 was the control. The study’s results helped lead to the conclusion that relaxing classical music could help reduce sleeping problems and would be a good treatment that nurses could use to help treat patients with insomnia.

Listen to Relaxing, Calm, Classical, Soothing Music Before Bed

Every study we found claimed that “calming”, “classical”, “relaxing”, or “soothing” music was the best music to listen to at bedtime.

For example, a 2012 study discovered that “relaxation music” helped traumatized refugees who suffer from sleep problems sleep better. According to the study’s Method, 15 traumatized refugees with sleep problems participated in the study. One group, the intervention group, listened to relaxing music that was played at night through a music player in an ergonomic pillow. The control group was only given the ergonomic pillow. Researchers found that the music group had significantly better sleep quality.

And a 2004 study found that older adults also sleep better when listening to “soothing” music. The study examined 60 people who were aged 60 through 83 years. Every study participant had problems sleeping. The participants listed to their choice of six, 45-minute “sedative music” tapes at bedtime from 3 weeks. The study discovered that listening to music helped study participants get significantly better sleep quality. Participants also had better perceived sleep quality, longer sleep, less sleep disturbance, and less daytime issues. The study also found that participants’ sleep improved every week. So, the music had a “cumulative dose effect”.

Bedtime Music Suggestions

The following calming bands, and their various albums, and genres, are perfect to listen to at bedtime.