Tips for Restful Sleep After a Nightmare

As much as we love a good night’s sleep, sometimes it can be hard to achieve. One of the most frustrating things is waking up from a nightmare and not being able to fall back asleep. If this happens often, you may find yourself dreading going to bed at all. However, there are some effective ways to calm down after a nightmare and get back into peaceful slumber.

Step 1: Take deep breaths

When you wake up feeling anxious or upset after a nightmare, the first thing you should do is take some deep breaths. This will help increase oxygen flow throughout your body and reduce feelings of stress. Focus on taking long inhales through your nose and exhaling slowly through your mouth.

Practice mindfulness meditation

Mindfulness meditation involves focusing on the present moment without judgment or distraction. This technique can help calm down racing thoughts that might be keeping you awake after a nightmare.

Try aromatherapy

Using essential oils like lavender or chamomile in a diffuser can also help ease anxiety and promote relaxation.

Step 2: Get out of bed (if needed)

If lying in bed isn’t helping you relax after experiencing nightmares, try getting out of bed for a little while. Do something relaxing like reading or listening to music until you feel tired enough to go back to sleep.

Avoid screens

One thing that’s important when getting out of bed is avoiding screens – like phones, tablets or laptops- which emit blue light that disrupts our natural sleep rhythms making us feel more alert instead of tired.

Try journaling

Journaling about your experiences during nightmares allows your mind space for reflection surrounding what may have triggered it so it doesn’t linger into obscurity with other memories causing more distress than necessary moving forward.

Step 3: Practice relaxation techniques

Relaxation techniques like progressive muscle relaxation can help you calm down and feel more at ease after a nightmare. This technique involves tensing and relaxing each muscle group in your body one by one, starting with the feet and working your way up.

Listen to calming music

Listening to soft instrumental music or nature sounds can also help you relax by reducing stress levels.

Take a warm bath or shower

Taking a warm bath or shower before bed is another great way to relax your mind and reduce feelings of anxiety.


Waking up from nightmares can be scary but it doesn’t have to ruin your night’s sleep entirely. With some simple relaxation techniques, mindfulness meditation, journaling practices, deep breathing exercises, aromatherapy among other things as mentioned above , you can get back into peaceful slumber more easily. Experiment with these tips until you find what works best for you – sweet dreams!