Data shows that many adults in the United States don’t get enough sleep, and oftentimes it’s not for lack of trying but more so because people find it hard to fall asleep. The day-to-day stresses of life can make it difficult to switch off, and for serial overthinkers, this feeling is multiplied.
One sleep hack that’s received rave reviews over the last couple of years is tuning into a podcast to help quiet your mind and does off into a slumber. Getting enough hours of sleep plays a huge role in our overall health, both physical and mental. So any trick that can help you regain a healthy sleep cycle is worth trying.
Having audio playing in the background while you’re trying to catch some much-needed zzzs may seem counterintuitive and strange, but the type of podcast plays an important role. For instance, listening to a true crime podcast will probably deliver the opposite of the desired effect, and will have you sat up all night waiting to find out “who did it.”
But, by choosing the right type of podcast, this method goes from being counterintuitive to pure genius.
In this guide, we’ve scoured the web and reviewed sites to find the best podcast for sleep in 2023. The diversity of the listed shows guarantees that you’ll find something that’s perfect for your unique listening desires.
The Top Podcast For Sleep
Here’s our roundup of the best podcast for sleep in 2023:
BBC’s Slow Radio
Hosted by BBC3, Slow Radio is extremely popular with residents of the United Kingdom and is considered one of the go-to podcasts for sleep. The show is updated on a weekly basis, which means you’ll always have a steady stream of new content to listen to. There are currently over a hundred episodes, that include lo-fi soundscapes of rain falling on rooftops, nature, and even the city of London noises.
If you find lo-fi sounds calming then Slow Radio might be the perfect fit for you. Each episode includes a variety of lo-fi sounds which are alternated every thirty minutes or so.
Sleep With Me Podcast
Next up we’ve got the Sleep With Me podcast, a show that features bedtime stories for adults with the intention of helping you get to sleep. The host and creator is Drew Ackerman, who commonly goes by the name Scooter.
Drew’s voice is extremely soothing, and he draws from his early childhood memories as inspiration for each episode.
This all-star sleep podcast was launched in 2013, and according to Drew, he tries to balance the struggles of insomnia with humor when creating stories for the show.
There are over a thousand episodes with a duration of anywhere between an hour to 90 minutes, meaning that there’s plenty of content to keep you sleeping easily for a long time.
You can find a sample episode here: The Christmas tree that took a walk
The Boring Books For Bedtime Podcast
If you’ve ever sat in bed at night reading a book that’s so boring it sends you to sleep within minutes then this podcast might be the audio version you’ve been looking for.
The show taps into the ability that boring stories have to send someone to sleep, especially seeing as each episode consists of the host reading lengthy and monotonous books such as history or science materials.
Each episode lasts approximately 50 minutes and the show already has an archive of more than 200 episodes for you to tune into.
The Boring Books for Bedtime podcast is another excellent choice if you love bedtime stories.
The Get Sleepy Podcast
Get Sleepy is ranked by many listeners as their go-to favorite podcast for sleep. So it’s definitely worth a shot if you’re a newbie to the world of using audio to lull yourself to sleep at night.
The show’s slogan is “the podcast that puts you to sleep,” and if all the raving reviews are correct – it does just that!
The show is hosted by Tom Jones, a British national who has an incredibly soothing accent. Jones’s show is created by a team of mediation experts, writers, and voice artists, under the guidance of sleep experts.
Get Sleepy releases new episodes twice a week. You can check out their introduction trailer here.
The Goodnight World Podcast
This show differs a little from the others featured on this list and that’s because it’s aimed at little ones. So, if you have difficulty getting your child to sleep at night then it might be worth trying this podcast as a sleeping aid.
Goodnight World is a partnership between Sesame Street and Headspace, the popular meditation app for adults. Each episode features stories told by a different Sesame Street character, from Big Bird to Elmo – they all make an appearance!
Even though it’s a podcast for children, you can also reap the benefits as it will help you relax after a long day of parenting. In fact, you might even dose off too!
There’s currently an archive with fourteen episodes that each lasts approximately 20 minutes.
You can check out the Goodnight World podcast here.
Nothing Much Happens
Sometimes when you’re trying to fall asleep, listening to bedtime stories can keep you awake rather than calm your mind due to the cliffhangers and storytelling element. This can be especially true for people who suffer from anxiety and overthinking.
If that’s the case for you, then this podcast might be worth trying. The Nothing Much Happens episodes don’t offer any twists and turns, or cliffhangers to keep you up at night. And what really makes this podcast stand out, is the breathing exercises included at the beginning of each episode that help you set the tone and relax.
The show is hosted by Kathryn Nicolai, an experienced yoga and meditation instructor who now also combines her passion for storytelling with tried-and-tested techniques to help you get better sleep.
Kathryn is also an author of a book that offers soothing bedtime stories for adults, which shares the same title as her podcast.
New episodes are released each week, with a duration of approximately half an hour. The bedtime stories are boring, and unexciting, which is exactly what you need if you’re wanting to use audio as a sleeping aid.
Sleep Whispers Podcast
Sleep Whispers is an excellent podcast if you’re someone who finds long and mundane lectures soothing. The best part about this show is that it doesn’t follow solely one theme, with episodes taking on a different format each time. Sometimes the host will read fun facts or Wikipedia pages, whereas other episodes consist of bedtime stories or trivia time.
The podcast is hosted by Dr. Craig Harris Richard, who also hosts the ASMR University podcast and helps produce the Sleep with Silk show. Richard’s launched the podcast in 2016 after he experienced trouble sleeping at night due to not being able to silence his mind.
Dr. Richard is a university lecturer who specializes in ASMR. So it should come as no surprise that Sleep Whispers is narrated in a whisper format, helping to provide a soothing ASMR experience for listeners.
If you’re interested in some of the benefits of ASMR whisper for relaxation then you can check out Dr. Richard’s TEDx Talk, where he delves into the science and reasoning behind this fact.
Currently, Sleep Whispers has an archive of over 400 episodes, which means there’s over a year’s worth of content to keep you sleeping easily and peacefully at night.
Deep Energy Podcast
Lastly, if you’re someone who struggles to fall asleep while listening to voices and bedtime stories, no matter how soothing they are, then music or ambient noise might be worth a try instead.
The Deep Energy podcast does just that! The show focuses on sharing soothing new-age music that can help lull you to sleep or quiet your mind while practicing yoga or meditation.
The show has an archive of over a thousand episodes, making it incredibly easy for you to find something that works.
We hope this guide has inspired you to check out some of the shows mentioned in the roundup.
Each podcast offers a unique set of features, different narration styles, varying stories, and more – meaning that there’s something for everyone to fall asleep to.
The best way to find out what works best for you is to test out a few of the podcasts we mentioned in this article and judge which ones you enjoy most, and what helps send you to sleep.