8 Best Podcasts to Fall Asleep To

woman sleeping on bed

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One in three adults in the United States doesn't get enough sleep. In many cases, it's not for want of trying but because they struggle with falling asleep at night.  Over time, people have developed several self-help tricks to help you fall asleep and get better quality sleep. 

One of the self-help tricks you might not have considered if you've been finding it difficult to fall asleep is listening to a podcast. While having something play while you try to sleep might seem counterintuitive, some podcasts have been proven to help people fall asleep and get better sleep through user data. 

We've put together eight podcasts designed by their creators specifically to help you fall asleep. The diverse list guarantees that you find something that suits you. 

Slow Radio 

If you enjoy lo-fi sounds and find them calming or soothing, Slow Radio might just be for you. The podcast features a wide range of lo-fi sounds in 30-minute bursts, from birds chirping to monks chatting. 

About the Podcast 

Slow Radio is hosted by BBC3 and updated weekly, which means there's always something new for you to try at the start of your week. There are currently 108 episodes for you to dive into, including episodes with London city soundscapes, rain hitting a rooftop, and the sounds of nature

Sleep With Me

As the name might have given away Sleep With Me is the podcast that puts you to sleep with adult bedtime stories. Relive some of your favorite childhood memories and get better sleep with this podcast.

About the Host 

The soothing voice you hear on the Sleep With Me podcast belongs to the creator and host, Drew Ackerman, who prefers to be called Scooter. The host draws on his colorful childhood to weave intriguing and relaxing stories.

About the Podcast

This one-of-a-kind storytelling podcast was created in 2013. According to the host, he combines the pain of insomnia with the relief of laughing to develop unique stories for the podcast. With over a thousand episodes, you can be guaranteed that you won't run out of something to listen to for a long time. Each episode lasts around 60 to 90 minutes.

Sample Episodes

Boring Books For Bedtime

This is another excellent option for lovers of bedtime stories. While this podcast can't replace the feeling of your parents reading your bedtime stories as a child, it does come pretty close.

About the Podcast

Have you ever read a book so dull that your eyes glaze over and you nod off? Well, Boring Books for Bedtime taps into the ability of boring books to be able to put anyone to sleep. Episodes feature the hosts reading out of materials like science textbooks or history books.

Each episode runs for about 50 minutes, and they currently have an archive of around 200 episodes for you to dive into, including episodes covering Adam Smith's "The Wealth of Nations" and Charles Darwin's "On the Origin of Species."

  • The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith
  • Two Acres Enough by Edmund Morris
  • On the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin

Get Sleepy

Get Sleepy's slogan is "the podcast that puts you to sleep," and rumor is that it does just that. Ranked by many subscribers and publications as one of the best sleep podcasts out there, Get Sleepy is worth a shot if you are a newbie to using podcasts to lull yourself to sleep.

About the Podcast 

Tom Jones is the host of Get Sleepy. With a background in music and audio and his soothing British accent, Tom knows a thing about catching your attention and holding on to it, even when trying to get you to sleep.

There's a new episode of Get Sleepy released twice weekly. The podcast is created by a team of writers, meditation experts, and voice-over artists, all under the guidance of sleep experts. Episodes include one about light switch meditation and one about the myth of Atlantis.

  • Finding the Dalai Lama
  • Light switch meditation for sleep
  • The myth of Atlantis

Goodnight World

If you can't get your little one to sleep, why not let one of their favorite characters from Sesame Street do it for you? For many new parents getting enough sleep can be challenging when your kids won't just settle in for the night. The Goodnight World podcast is perfect for helping put them, and maybe even you, to sleep. 

About the Podcast

The hosts of the Goodnight World podcast are none other than your favorite Sesame Street characters. From Elmo to Big Bird, each episode is told by a different Sesame Street Character.

Goodnight World is brought to you by Headspace Studios in collaboration with Sesame Street. The podcast is for children, but even adult lovers of Sesame Street shouldn't be surprised when they find themselves nodding off to the voices of some of their favorite characters. The podcast currently has only 14 episodes, each lasting around 20 minutes. 

  • Elmo Helps Out at Hooper's Store 
  • Bert & Bernie & The Clean Machines 
  • Abby & Rudy in Once Upon a Library 

Nothing Much Happens 

Sometimes when struggling to fall asleep, listening to a bedtime story where nothing much happens might do the trick. This podcast is excellent for people being kept up by anxious thoughts or who are just plain restless

About the Podcast 

Kathryn Nicolai, the host, writes and narrates her bedtime stories for adults. She's also the author of a book of soothing bedtime stories, which shares the same name as the show. Her years of experience as a yoga and meditation teacher help her combine the art of storytelling with brain training methods that help you get better sleep.

The last thing you need when trying to feel asleep is listening to a story with twists and turns that end in cliffhangers, making the stories on the Nothing Much Happens podcast perfect. What sets this podcast apart from other sleep podcasts is the breathing exercise the host, Kathryn, guides you through at the beginning of each episode to relax.

Each episode ranges between 20 to 30 minutes and a new one is released each week. The stories are simple and unexciting, which is precisely what you might need when trying to fall asleep.

  • Raining Cats and Dogs 
  • Heavy Snow at the Cabin 
  • Yard Sale or Another Man's Treasure 

Sleep Whispers 

If you've tried and enjoyed Boring Books for Bedtime, you'll also love Sleep Whispers. This podcast is excellent for people who find the drone of long lectures lulling and maybe even a little comforting. The great thing about Sleep Whispers is that it's not just episodes of the host reading you fun facts, bedtime stories, and Wikipedia articles; each episode also doubles as a calming meditation guide. 

About the Podcast 

Dr. Craig Harris Richard is the host of Sleep Whispers. He also hosts the ASMR University podcast and produces the Sleep with Silk Podcast. He is a University Professor specializing in physiology with a focus on ASMR. His TEDx Talk "Whispered Revolution of Relaxation" is worth a listen for anyone curious about why his podcast is told in whispers.

As the name might have given away, each episode of Sleep Whispers is narrated in comforting whispers. The podcast was created in 2016 because the creator had trouble quieting his mind at night. His soft-spoken voice cuts through the chatter in your brain, stopping you from falling asleep. There are currently over 400 episodes, which means you won't be running out of new stories to listen to anytime soon. Each whispered episode falls into one of the five following categories:

  • 'Story Time' episodes made up of bedtime stories 
  • 'Fade Out' episodes to bore you to sleep
  • 'Acorn' episodes are made up of tips and quotes the host finds interesting 
  • 'Whisperpedia' episodes where you learn interesting tidbits as you fall asleep 
  • 'Trivia Time' episodes are made of fun facts that distract you from anxious thoughts 
  • #316 Whisperpedia: The Balloon Boy Hoax of 2009 
  • #72 A Conspiracy Theory about Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer 
  • #69 The History of Spotify and other Fun Facts 

Deep Energy Podcast 

Listening to bedtime stories to help you fall asleep might not be for you. Maybe you find voices distracting or get too wrapped up in the stories, no matter how unexciting they are. That's ok; you can also try music and ambient sounds.

About the Podcast

Deep Energy Podcast is made of ambient sounds and relaxing new-age music. They are great for putting you to sleep and can help you focus while working or stay grounded while practicing meditation or yoga. With over a thousand episodes, you are bound to find something that works for you. Set the volume on low and let soothing sound after soothing sound transport you to sleep.

If you are having trouble falling asleep, it could indicate an underlying condition such as depression, diabetes, sleep apnea, or insomnia. In some cases, it could be because you are stressed. Eliminating stressors in your life that are within your control could help you get better sleep.

If a condition is causing you to sleep poorly, you are likely to exhibit other symptoms. It's crucial to watch out for these symptoms and consult your doctor, who will help you get to the bottom of it. 

1 Source
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  1. CDC. 1 in 3 adults don’t get enough sleep

By Toketemu Ohwovoriole
Toketemu has been multimedia storyteller for the last four years. Her expertise focuses primarily on mental wellness and women’s health topics.