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Does Listening to Something at Bed Impact My Sleep?

by Morgan Spencer

Has listening to something like music ever helped you sleep? Is it good or bad for health? This post explores the impact of listening to music while sleeping.

Music impacts our brains in ways we can never imagine. Our brains are conditioned to respond to music, and it doesn't matter the type of music. Once it plays, our heart rate mirrors the beat. Different music can alter our body's hormonal levels. What may seem relaxing to one may affect another person differently. So, some songs hit differently.

woman in bed sleeping with headphones on while holding smartphone

And yes, certain music can help you catch some sleep, according to experts. Emphasis on "certain" because not all kinds of music can help you hit the snooze button. Most sleep experts agree music with a rhythm of approximately 60 beats per minute can help people fall asleep when listened to for about 45 minutes.

Music has often been linked to sleep hygeine, with several studies supporting the positive impact of music on sleep. Music can deal with short-term and chronic sleep problems.

Why You Should Listen to Music while Sleeping

Improves Sleep Quality

As long as you are listening to relatively slow songs that are 60 beats per minute, you will fall asleep faster. Liken it to the moments when our parents lulled us to sleep.

Not only will the melody soothe you, but the routine of playing songs before bed will tell your body that it's time to rest. You will realize that you will be able to fall asleep effortlessly because you have trained the body to do so.

Relax Better

Music is relaxing. If anywhere between 60 - 80 beats per minute, you will feel relaxed and soothed. Remember that everyone defines 'relaxing' in his terms. Not everyone finds classical music relaxing.

Fall Asleep Quicker

In a world full of problems and decisions to make, it is impossible not to engage our minds in some deep thinking. Each thought battles for your attention, which keeps the brain awake. Putting on some music can take our minds off these distractions and refocus our brains. You will sleep much faster at the end of a stressful day.

side profile shot of woman sleeping in bed while wearing bluetooth ear buds

Stimulates Serotonin Production

Listening to pleasant music can trigger the production of serotonin, the happy hormone. This feel-good chemical is absent in depressed people. No wonder experts recommend music to depressed patients. It’s easier to fall asleep when you’re happy.

Why You Shouldn't Listen to Music with Earbuds

While experts encourage listening to music to aid in sleeping, wearing earbuds or headphones to bed is discouraged for many reasons.

Lack of Blood Flow

First, the pressure your earbuds create over time can reduce blood circulation and cause tissue damage in your ears. Ouch.

It Leads to Wax Buildup

Our ears always create wax to block out foreign objects from penetrating. Prolonged use of earbuds can lead to wax buildup that could clog the ears. When excessive, it can affect hearing. Plus, if you roll over with earbuds, you could injure your ear canal.

We recommend listening to music at a low volume on a speaker by your bed, or investing in headbands with soft headphones built in.

bluetooth speaker on bedside table

Is it Bad to Listen to a Podcast/Audiobook Before Bed?

Maybe listening to a podcast is more your style, but what's the impact on sleep? Turns out that podcasts and music aren't different from each other. They both go hand in hand with sleep. One study discovered that listening to podcasts activates multiple parts of the brain, which can help you to fall asleep.

Like music, the choice in podcast will impact your ability to fall asleep. For example, you will find it hard to sleep if you listen to crime podcasts and murder mystery novels. They will grab your attention and keep you awake. Instead, most sleep experts suggest listening to relaxation podcasts and the newly popular “sleep stories” to power the brain down before sleep.

Music Can Only Take You So Far

Listening to music and podcasts before bed has tremendous benefits and you should try incorporating these into your routines to enjoy maximum sleep benefits.

Meanwhile, remember that the mattress plays a significant role in your sleep quality. The good news is Crane's Mattress has a variety of mattresses at great prices to keep you comfortable and relaxed. Stop by today to find the right mattress to go along with your new favorite sleep playlist.