Sleep is one of the pillars of brain health and overall health and yet about 35 per cent of adults in the U.S. reported sleeping less than seven hours each night. Sleep helps the body rest and restore and maintain its normal functions that contribute to the quality of life. Adequate good quality sleep helps prevent heart disease, stroke, excess weight gain, poor concentration, and low productivity. Both the amount and quality matter (source).
Good night sleep may be disrupted by stress, physical illnesses and pain, medication, poor sleeping habits, mental health disorders, environment for sleeping and other factors (source).
Sleep disorders manifest as having trouble falling asleep and staying asleep the entire night. If this situation continues, sleep deprivation sets in which can cause further problems such as low productivity at work, excessive daytime sleepiness, increased risk of auto accidents, and other health issues.
If you have any disruptors and they persistently disturb your sleep, discuss your concerns with your doctor. Your doctor will determine the type of sleep disorder and its root cause (s) and help you choose appropriate treatment. Treatment may include lifestyle changes and prescription and nonprescription medications and supplements, Lifestyle changes are among the most effective solutions to sleeping problems. These include avoiding caffeine, exercising regularly, and sleeping on a regular schedule. However, these may not be enough for some people. Adding dietary supplement sleep aids to their regimen may bring better results.
Although nonprescription sleep aids are available over the counter, it is best to consult a doctor before using them, Sleep aids should be used under your doctor’s guidance. Your doctor can advise you about harmful interactions of the sleep aids with your medications, safety for your medical history, and proper doses.
Our Top Picks
- Best for Staying Asleep: Sleep Support Plus
- Best Non-Habit-Forming Sleep Aid: VitalSleep mouthpiece, AirSnore mouthpiece
- Best Natural Sleep Aid: Som Sleep
- Best for Anxiety: AirSnore Drops
- Best for Quality Sleep: Sleep Wave
Natural Sleep Support Supplements
Natural sleep support supplements are sleep aids that provide botanical extracts, minerals, and vitamins that claim to improve sleep. These formulations may support occasional sleeplessness without causing adverse side effects.
Sleep support supplements enhance a healthy sleep cycle by boosting feelings of relaxation and calmness which are the antidotes for sleep problems.
What to Look for in Natural Sleep Aids
The wide array of sleep aids in the market can make purchasing them a daunting experience. If you want to get the best value for your money, check out these features:
The active ingredients present
A supplement is as good as its ingredients. If you are looking for a natural sleep support supplement, get one with effective ingredients. Some of the best ingredients in sleep aids include;
- Valerian root
- GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid)
Select a sleep supplement from a reputable brand. To know whether a brand is legitimate or not, check out product tests online, doctor recommendations, third-party testing, and good manufacturing practices. Additionally, research various sources such as Amazon and Reddit for customer reviews of the product. Be aware, however, of the limitations of these reviews. In addition, doctors who endorse or recommend products may have a conflict of interest.
If you are looking for a sleep supplement that can help with occasional sleeplessness, you should go for a product that claims to do exactly that. Also, read customer reviews on the product to understand whether it lives up to its claims. Look for the mandatory disclaimers on the label that these statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA requires these disclaimers to be printed on the product label. Dietary supplements sleep aids have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration for safety and efficacy.
The disclaimer must also state that the dietary supplement product is not intended to “diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.” https://www.fda.gov/food/food-labeling-nutrition/label-claims-conventional-foods-and-dietary-supplements
While all sleep aids promise to help you sleep better, others offer more than just a good shut-eye. Some supplements claim to stimulate your body to produce neurotransmitters that help you relax for better sleep. Other sleep supplements feature important vitamins and minerals that may have antiaging benefits. Again, note the disclaimer. Remember that these claims have not been evaluated and approved by the FDA.
If you have an allergy to some food or chemical ingredients, look for supplements that will not cause you a reaction. Avoid supplements that contain common allergens such as eggs, milk, nuts, soy and wheat. (source)
Do Natural Sleep Aids Work?
Natural sleep aids work if they contain sleep-promoting ingredients such as melatonin, a hormone that supports sleep. The primary benefit of sleep aids is to make you feel drowsy allowing you to get more sleep.
In addition, these sleep-inducing supplements reduce daytime drowsiness as well as impaired thinking caused by sleep deprivation. They also help improve your sleep schedule thus enabling you to enjoy consistent sleep for long.
Some of these supplements particularly improve occasional sleep disorders caused by jet lag or sleep work disorder. Well, sleep aids improve sleep disorders such as long-term insomnia, narcolepsy, and obstructive sleep apnea. Some doctors recommend such supplements together with prescribed medication when treating the underlying issues.
Best Sleep Aid Supplements for Insomnia
Insomnia is one of the major sleep disorders that make it hard for you to fall asleep, stay asleep, or go back to sleep once you wake up. This sleep disorder can affect your health, mood, performance, energy and overall quality of life.
Other symptoms of insomnia include: disrupted night sleep, daytime sleepiness, depression, irritability, or anxiety, difficulty in paying attention, focusing or remembering details, increased accidents or errors and feeling tired feeling even after a night’s sleep.
The best sleep aid supplements for insomnia are those that contain natural sleep aids such as:
- Melatonin – This sleep hormone is produced naturally by the body. It signals the brain that it is time to sleep. Melatonin’s production cycle is influenced by time. During the evening the hormone levels increases and falls in the morning. (source)
- Valerian Root – This herb is native to Asia and Europe. It is usually used to treat the symptoms of menopause, depression, and anxiety. (source)
- Magnesium – This is a mineral that is required by various body functions such as heart health. It helps calm the body and mind and thus eases you into sleep. (source)
- Passionflower – This is another popular ingredient for insomnia. It is claimed to improve sleep duration and quality. (source)
- Lavender – Apart from its incense properties, the soothing fragrance of lavender has been used to improve sleep quality. (source)
Best Sleep Aid and Supplements for Bodybuilders
Bodybuilding requires a good training routine, diet, and sufficient sleep. Growth hormones are produced during sleep thus improving protein synthesis. The two major benefits of sleep for bodybuilders are brain cell restoration and reduced energy consumption.
With lowered energy consumption, bodybuilders can maintain the size of their bodies effortlessly. Sleep also helps recharge the brain by reducing adenosine, In the brain, adenosine is an inhibitory neurotransmitter which acts as a nervous system depressant, Adenosine is also used to produce adenosine triphosphate (ATP), an energy storing molecule. (source)
Cortisol and adrenaline are also produced during exercise. While these hormones are great for enduring strenuous workouts, they are not conducive to letting you relax and stay calm for a good night’s rest. A good sleep supplement will reduce these hormones to promote sleep. (source)
The best sleep aid supplements should have ingredients that not only improve sleep but also benefit the joints and muscles. A good example is the whole Montmorency tart cherry which is superior to melatonin. Montmorency tart cherry provides deeper sleep, energized mornings, and joint/muscle support. (source) Other ingredients to check out include magnesium, zinc, vitamin C, GABA, melatonin, and valerian root.
Our Top 5 Sleep Support Products
Our best picks include:
Sleep Support Plus is an herbal formulation that supports a healthy sleep cycle, provides relief for occasional sleeplessness, and promotes relaxation. It contains high-quality botanical extracts, vitamins, and minerals that work together to ease the body into better sleep.
It contains potent ingredients such as:
- Tryptophan – An essential amino acid that stimulates the production of melatonin and serotonin. A research study in the Journal of Medicine claims that tryptophan can alleviate short-term sleep disorders among detoxified individuals with new type drug -tdependence. However, larger studies are needed to confirm these results
- Melatonin – This sleep hormone signals helps to notify the brain that it is time to sleep. In a meta-analysis by the PLOS ONE Journal, melatonin was found to reduce sleep-onset latency, increase sleep time, and improve overall sleep quality.
Source: Ferracioli-Oda E, Qawasmi A, Bloch MH. Meta-analysis: melatonin for the treatment of primary sleep disorders. PLoS One. 2013 May 17;8(5):e63773. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0063773. PMID: 23691095; PMCID: PMC3656905
- Promotes deeper and long-duration sleep
- Encourages a healthy sleep cycle
- Helps calm the mind
- Contains traces of food allergens such as soy, wheat, and peanuts
Price: 1 bottle – $27.95, 2 bottles – $48.94, 4 bottles (1 free) – $97.88
Please note: See this review of Sleep Support
VitalSleep is an anti-snoring device that reduces snoring so as to provide better and quiet sleep. Snoring usually occurs when there is a partial obstruction in the throat due to relaxed muscles. To prevent snoring, this device features an Accu-Adjust System which opens up the jaw to increase the throat’s airway size. This allows the free flow of air into the throat thus preventing snoring.
A clinical trial in the Journal of Sleep Disorders and Management studied the effectiveness of an intraoral device on habitual snorers. The study noted a 67% improvement in the Snoring Severity Scale. Similar to the device in the study, the VitalSleep mouthpiece may work.
- Improves breathing while sleeping
- Offers custom teeth impressions for comfort and effectiveness
- Provides personalized jaw adjustment
- Only improves heavy snoring caused by conditions such as obstructive sleep apnea
Price: VitalSleep Anti-Snoring Mouthpiece – $69.95
The AirSnore mouthpiece helps you breathe properly so as to stop snoring. According to the manufacturer, this device is easy to use and is highly effective.In addition, it does not require dental fitting as it molds into the mouth, allowing a comfortable fit.
The AirSnore mouthpiece adjusts the jaw to open the upper airway which then ensures easy breathing. With improved breathing, snoring subsides, thus improving sleep. According to the review study published in the Journal of Sleep Disorders and Management oral appliances have a definite role in the treatment of snoring and sleep apnea.
Source: Greenburg J, Cozean J, Cozean C (2019) Novel Anti-Snoring Mouthpiece to Reduce Snoring in At-Home Study. J Sleep Disord Manag 5:022. doi.org/10.23937/2572-4053.1510022
- Improves sleep quantity and quality
- Helps reduce headaches, irritability, and tiredness during the day
- Helps prevent serious health issues caused by sleep deprivation
- The results may vary with individuals
The AirSnore Drops is a blend of natural oils that helps enable users to sleep well through a cough or cold. Cough, cold, or chest congestion blocks airways making it hard to breathe properly,thereby,disrupting sleep.
Unlike sleeping pills, AirSnore Drops promises to enhance sleep without relaxing the neck muscles which are the culprits of snoring. This medicinal oil is to be rubbed on the chest, neck, and nostrils before going to bed. Ingredients used to formulate this product include:
- Sunflower seed oil – This is an essential oil that is claimed to have mood-enhancing properties. In a study by the Journal of Evidence Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, essential oils stimulate the olfactory receptors which release the serotonin hormones.
- Eucalyptus leaf oil – In a randomized controlled trial conducted by the European Journal of Integrative Medicine, essential oils used in aromatherapy were found to lower stress and depression and promote better sleep quality.
- Encourages better sleep without snoring
- Helps support better morning wake-up
- Contains effective ingredients
- May aggravate sinus conditions for some individuals
Sleep Wave is a sleep-improving supplement that to helps you maintain deep sleep effortlessly. It targets the circadian rhythm which regulates the normal sleep cycle. According to the manufacturer, this product contains two supportive blends: asleep support herbal blend and a circadian rhythm nutrient blend. The ingredients include:
- Chamomile – This is an herb that has been used as a natural remedy for centuries. In a research study by the Journal of Education and Health Promotion, ooral administration of chamomile extract was found to have sedative properties in sleep quality of hospitalized elderly patients in nursing homes.This finding can be applied in similar cases and nursing care.
- L-Theanine – This is a naturally occurring amino acid that is popularly used as an anti-anxiety supplement. A study published in the journal of Pharmaceutical Biology, investigated the effectiveness of GABA and L-theanine mixture on sleep in mice. The study found sleep latency reduced by 14.9%and sleep duration increased by 26.8%.
- Improves sleep duration and quality
- Helps boost brain cell functions
- Manages sleep disorder nonpharmacologically
- Users on medication may not be able to use this product unless approved by a doctor
Som Sleep is a sleep-improving drink that helps you sleep fast and deeply. It promises to wake you up refreshed in the morning with no traces of drowsiness. It also focuses on resetting the normal sleep schedule which allows you to sleep on time, deeply, and longer.
According to the manufacturer, this product is healthy and sugar-free. Therefore, it improves sleep without compromising on your health. The ingredients in this formula include:
- GABA – Gama A aminobutyric A acid is an amino acid that functions as a neurotransmitter in your brain. In a randomized double-blind trial published in the Journal of Clinical Neurology, a daily dose of 300 mg of GABA (from fermented rice germ extract) was found to improve sleep efficacy and quality without adverse effects.
- Melatonin – This sleep hormone is popularly used in prescription and over-the-counter pills to improve sleep. According to a systematic review in the Nutrition Journal, melatonin may reduce the time it takes for people with delayed sleep phase syndrome to fall asleep.
- Helps falling asleep faster
- Actively regulates the normal sleep cycle
- Non-habit forming
- The ingredient amounts are shown on the label.
Price: 12 pack – $29.99, 24 pack – $59.98
Q: Is it OK to Take Sleep Aid Every Night?
A: Naturally formulated supplements work to support the natural body system and are considered safe. However, for regular or persistent sleep issues, you should consult your doctor to get a full diagnosis and treatment for your condition.Sleep aids are intended for short-term use.
Q: Do Natural Sleep Sids have Side Effects?
A: Products with the right ingredients don’t cause any serious side effects and should also not cause dependence.
Q: How Do Sleep Supplements Work?
A: Sleep supplements usually contain sleep-inducing ingredients such as chamomile and GABA. These ingredients work to stimulate neurotransmitters such as melatonin which notify the brain that it is time to sleep. Other ingredients work to regulate the body’s sleep cycle.
Q: Do Sleeping Pills Work for Insomnia?
A: Yes, sleeping pills improve insomnia if it is caused by issues such as stress, poor sleeping habits, and jet lag. If the causes of insomnia are serious conditions such as mental health disorders or neurological issues, these pills cannot do much. In this case, the best way to address your sleeping disorder is to consult your health care provider who will prescribe medications and other treatments for you.
Q: Do Sleep Pills Give You Good Sleep?
A: Yes, sleep pills that contain effective ingredients can improve sleep quality and quantity. Such supplements have certain nutrients that help calm the brain, regulate neurotransmitters, and reset the sleep cycle.
Q: Can I Get Addicted to Sleep Supplements?
A: Naturally formulated sleep aid products are not habit-forming, unlike their synthetically formulated counterparts. But it is important to carefully research the ingredients and their claims to know their long-term effects.
Q: What Are the Side Effects of Sleeping Aids?
A: In general, sleep aids may cause mild allergic reactions, dependence, dizziness, drowsiness, blurred vision, constipation, and stomach upset among others. If consumers experience adverse reactions, they should stop using the products. Products include these statements on their label.
Q: Are Natural Sleep Aids Safe for Pregnant or Breastfeeding Women?
A: While sleep aids are considered safe, women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should consult their doctor before using them. This is because these supplements have not undergone rigorous testing and approval by the Food and Drug Administration to prove their safety for pregnant or breastfeeding women.
Q: How Fast Do Sleep Aid Supplements Work?
A: On average, sleep supplements take around 1 hour to start working. However, the most effective ones, can cause falling asleep faster by about 15 minutes. Good sleep aids also provide an additional 35 minutes of sleep.
Sleep disorders can be caused by various factors ranging from stress to serious medical conditions. Sleep support supplements can be helpful in relieving sleep disturbances.
Sleep aids are used to promote better sleep for individuals with problems falling asleep, staying asleep, and sleeping for long. These products do not treat underlying issues and function in different ways. Some regulate the sleep hormones to improve the quality and quantity of sleep.
Apart from supplements, anti-snoring devices are available to improve sleep. These devices open up the airways to allow the free flow of air. Unlike supplements, these devices may not cause dependence.
To avoid take the supplements as recommended and not more than that for any reason. If you experience any side effects, discontinue use and consult your doctor.
Sleeping pills are not safe for pregnant, breastfeeding, and users with chronic conditions such as high blood sugar. They should use sleeping pill only if approved by their healthcare provider.
Our top picks are from reputable brands and feature ingredients that have scientific backing. Ingredients such as melatonin, chamomile, and valerian root are natural sleep aids that have been used over the years. Customer reviews also rank these products favorably. For instance, Som Sleep has 4.2 stars on Amazon.
These products range from affordable to expensive. Buying supplements in bulk can earn you a significant discount, saving you some bucks. In addition, these sleep aids come in different forms such as pills or drinks, giving you options.
Since products work differently from user to user, before splurging your hard-earned money on any sleep aid. Do research on the ingredients, read important details, consult your healthcare provider and read customer reviews online to help you make informed decision. And we hope our article will help you find the best solution for your sleep disorders.
At Wellness Digest, our sourcing guidelines are strict and we only use primary references for our articles including peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. You can learn more about how we ensure our content is accurate and current by reading our editorial policy.
 Sleep Disorder: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK560720/
 Daily rhythms of the sleep-wake cycle: https://jphysiolanthropol.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1880-6805-31-5
 Dongming Wang et al. Medicine (Baltimore). 2016. "Tryptophan for the sleeping disorder and mental symptom of new-type drug dependence" PMID: 27428201 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4956795/
 Ahmad Qawasmi, Eduardo Ferracioli-Oda, and Michael H. Bloch. PLoS One. 2013. "Meta-analysis: melatonin for the treatment of primary sleep disorders" PMID: 23691095 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3656905/
 Colette Cozean, Jesse Cozean, and Jonathan Greenburg. Journal of Sleep Disorders and Management. ISSN: 2572-4053. "Novel anti-snoring mouthpiece to reduce snoring in at-home study" DOI: 10: 10.23937/2572-4053.1510022 https://clinmedjournals.org/articles/jsdm/journal-of-sleep-disorders-and-management-jsdm-5-022.php?jid=jsdm
 Victor Hoffstein. Sleep Breath. 2007. "Review of oral appliances for treatment of sleep-disordered breathing" PMID: 17136406 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1794626/
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 Ji-Ah Song, Mi-Eun Kim, Mi-kyoung Lee, Myung-Haeng Hur, and Sunog Lim. European Journal of Integrative Medicine. 2017. Vol 12, p. 79-86. "The effects of aromatherapy essential oil inhalation on stress, sleep quality, and immunity in healthy adults" https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1876382017300951
 Mehrdad Abdullahzadeh, Pegah Matourypour, and Sayed Ali Naji. J Educ Health Promot. 2017. "Investigation effect of oral chamomilla on sleep quality in elderly people in Isfahan: A randomized control trial" PMID: 28616420 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5470311/
 Insomnia: Definition, Prevalence, Etiology, and Consequences https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1978319/
 Hyung Joo Suh, Ki-Bae Hong, Kyungae Jo, Suhyeon Kim, and Sung Hee Han. Pharm Biol. 2019. "GABA and L-theanine mixture decreases sleep latency and improves NREM sleep" PMID: 30707852 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6366437/
 Jung-Ick Byun, Sung-Eun Chung, Won Chul Shin, Yu Yong Shin. J Clin Neurol. 2018. "Safety and efficacy of Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid from fermented rice germ in patients with insomnia symptoms: A randomized, double-blind trial" PMID: 29856155 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6031986/
 The Impact of Sleep and Circadian Disturbance on Hormones and Metabolism https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4377487/
 Ferracioli-Oda E, Qawasmi A, Bloch MH. Meta-analysis: melatonin for the treatment of primary sleep disorders. PLoS One. 2013 May 17;8(5):e63773. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0063773. PMID: 23691095; PMCID: PMC3656905.