Doctor Reveals ‘Game-Changer’ Trick To Quickly Fall Asleep

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Are you having trouble falling asleep quickly at night, leaving you tired throughout the day? You aren’t alone. Thankfully, one doctor has revealed a “game-changer” trick that will have you falling asleep fast.

Scott Walter
Are you tired during the day because you can’t fall asleep quickly at night? Dr. Scott Walter has a solution. (Photo Credit: AI-generated image)

Dr. Scott Walter, a board-certified dermatologist in the Denver area, took to TikTok with a video, admitting that — like many of us — he sometimes has difficulty falling asleep. Dr. Walter certainly isn’t alone. According to government estimates, 50 to 70 million Americans suffer from chronic sleep disorders. Moreover, 14.5% of US adults reported having trouble falling asleep every day or most days in 2020.

Of course, this presents a huge problem beyond feeling a little less energized. Experts have discovered that prolonged sleep loss can lead to several health problems, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, stroke, obesity, and even depression. Thankfully, Dr. Scott Walter revealed that there is something we can do to trick ourselves into quickly falling asleep, and it’s a “game-changer.”

@denverskindoc

Stitch w/ @sidneyraz say goodbye to the Sunday Scaries and fall asleep quickly with this doctor approved sleep hack! #sleephack #todayilearned #wishiknew #howtofallasleepfaster #cognitiveshuffling #cognitiveshuffle #sleephelp #doctor #medicine #sleep #sundayscaries #doctorhack #fallingasleep #anxiety

♬ original sound – Dr. Scott Walter | Derm

Instead of a supplement, warm drink, reading, or a hot shower before bed, Dr. Walter suggests a method called “cognitive shuffling,” which he says was “like a light switch moment” for him once he learned it. So, what’s cognitive shuffling? According to Dr. Walter, it’s a simple mental exercise or a mind trick that will have you falling asleep quickly.

“It’s a way to rearrange or reorganize your thoughts — similar to shuffling a deck of cards — basically distracting your mind from conscious thought patterns that may keep you awake,” Walter explained in his TikTok video that quickly garnered millions of views, adding that there is more than one way to do it before providing two examples of how to perform the mental exercise that puts your brain to rest.

Instead of a supplement, warm drink, reading, or a hot shower before bed, Dr. Scott Walter suggests a method called “cognitive shuffling.” (Photo Credit: AI-generated image)

“One is just thinking of random words or objects that have nothing to do with each other,” Dr. Walter said, describing one way of performing the mental exercise. “For example, cow, leaf, sandwich, butter, liver, things like that — just random words that make no sense,” he continued. For those who don’t like “random,” there is another method, Dr. Walter revealed.

The other strategy involves selecting a letter of the alphabet, and then counting your heartbeat. “[E]very eight beats, you think of a word that begins with that letter,” Dr. Walter explained before asking what many were already thinking. “So, you may be wondering, how does this really work?” he continued. “In addition to distracting your brain, cognitive shuffling mimics what are called microdreams, which occur during the transition to sleep, [letting] your brain know, hey, it’s safe to fall asleep.”

Scott Walter
According to Dr. Scott Walker, “cognitive shuffling” lets your brain know “it’s safe to fall asleep.” (Photo Credit: AI-generated image)

Dr. Scott Walter isn’t the only one recommending such exercises. Dorsey Standish, a mechanical engineer, neuroscientist, and CEO of Mastermind Meditate, recommended something similar. In Standish’s method, you start by picking a root word like “relax.” Then, you picture words that begin with “R,” such as “rat,” “rest,” “rent,” etc until you can’t think of any more “R” words. Once you’ve exhausted the “R,” you move onto “E,” and continue until you fall asleep, which should take between 10 and 15 minutes, according to Standish.

“A technique like cognitive shuffling can assist the nervous system in relaxing and letting go into sleep,” Standish told Eat This, Not That! in 2023. Don’t like those methods? One TikTok user suggested using the rainbow. Similar to Standish’s method, you start with red and think of everything you can that’s red. Then, move on to orange, and continue through the rainbow until you drift off to sleep.

https://www.tiktok.com/@neuroqueercoach/video/7287717329209707806

According to one TikTok user, cognitive shuffling helped her put to rest 25 years of sleep struggles while another claimed it helped her cure her insomnia. “It actually helps me to not overthink since the words and the order of them doesn’t make sense at all,” she wrote, according to the NY Post.

If you are having difficulty falling asleep at night, knock yourself out — no pun intended — by giving these “cognitive shuffling” exercises a try. What do you have to lose besides time wasted, lying awake and wishing you were asleep?