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10 Ways To Get Better Sleep In Your RV

closeup of bed in RV - feature image for ways to get better sleep

How To Get Better Sleep In An RV

Traveling in an RV is a ton of fun, but it can be hard to wind down after a long day of driving or exploring the outdoors. Some people find it hard to sleep in an RV because the environment around them is always changing. You can’t always guarantee that your campground or RV resort will be quiet and peaceful. So, what are some ways to get better sleep in your RV?

Ultimately, you should try to create a sleeping space that mirrors your preferences and habits. Many people are able to get better sleep if the room is dark, quiet, and set to a comfortable temperature. There are also different tactics you can use to make your RV mattress more comfortable.

If you have a hard time getting comfortable in an RV bed, you’re not alone! Luckily, there are a few techniques and habits you can try that may help you fall asleep faster. Check out our top 10 ways to get better sleep in your RV.

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1. Darken the windows

Have you ever noticed that it’s easier to wake up when it’s bright and sunny, but harder when it’s cloudy? That’s partly because humans follow circadian rhythms, and we’re easily influenced by light and darkness.

Most people find it much easier to fall asleep if they’re in a dark room. This is especially important in an RV because other campers around you might keep their lights on when you’re trying to go to sleep.

To fix this issue, you can darken your windows. Blackout curtains are a good solution, plus they add extra insulation over your windows. These still have gaps though, so some people opt for a stick-on window film that completely blocks light from entering. The VELIMAX Static Cling Total Blackout Window Cover is a good choice for this.

2. Play some ambient noise

Sound is another factor that can make it hard to get a good night’s sleep. If you travel in an RV, you’ll probably stay in a wide variety of places. You might have to deal with the sound of passing traffic, wildlife, noisy neighbors, trains, and much more. Sometimes this background noise can be relaxing, but it’s difficult to fall asleep in a noisy environment.

You can mitigate some of these issues if you play white noise at night. There are special machines for this purpose, but you can also use a Bluetooth speaker and play these noises from your phone.

Different sound mixes might work better than others, so try out a few options. Maybe the sound of rain falling or ocean waves will suit you better than ambient white noise. 

3. Turn off noisemakers

Speaking of noise, make it a habit to go around your RV and power down any appliances or devices that might make noise during the night. The last thing you want is to be woken up by loud clunks and whirring. Try to get everyone to put their phones on silent or “Do not disturb” mode so you don’t hear any dings in the middle of the night. 

4. Invest in a good mattress topper

It’s no secret that RV beds aren’t the most comfortable things in the world. In many cases, you need to upgrade them, but not everyone has the money to buy a brand-new mattress. Instead, try investing in a mattress topper. There are lots of different options, but memory foam tends to be one of the best materials.

A topper adds extra padding to your bed, and it can even influence the temperature of the mattress. Some toppers have a cooling gel that keeps them cool, while others are designed to trap air and heat it up. A topper is a low-effort way to improve your sleep quality, so it’s one of the best ways to get better sleep in an RV.

5. Avoid screens before bed

This one can be hard to follow through on, but you’ll sleep much better if you avoid screens before bed. Most devices emit blue light, which keeps your eyes and brain active even if you’re trying to relax. Using a night filter can help, but it’s usually best to just avoid screens altogether in the hour before you go to bed.

To reinforce this habit, try to keep your phone out of reach in your bedroom. Don’t lay on your bed when you scroll on your phone, because this will form a connection in your mind between staying awake and using your phone.

Instead, try reading or doing a crafting activity. This will help you relax and unwind without messing with your vision. If you avoid excessive mental stimulation before bed, it’s easier to fall asleep.

6. Try a weighted blanket

I don’t know about you, but it’s much easier to relax and fall asleep when I’m bundled under a lot of blankets! However, space is limited in an RV, so you may need to cut back on the amount of bedding you pack. Therefore, a weighted blanket is a great solution that gives you the best of both worlds. 

These blankets are heavy enough to provide a full-body tactile experience. It helps you sink into the mattress and relax more easily. There are lots of different sizes and weights you can choose from, but the Heavy Microfiber Blanket with Glass Beads is a good all-around option. 

7. Set the interior temperature to your preferences

We mentioned this before, but the interior temperature of a home on wheels (or any home!) is also an important factor. One of the best ways to get better sleep is to adjust the temperature so it’s comfortable. This balance might be hard to find because some people get hot while they sleep, while others are cold. 

In general, it’s better to lean toward the cooler side because you can always bundle up, but it’s hard to cool down if the room is hot. Electric heaters or fans can help regulate the temperature so you don’t need to use your A/C all night long.

8. Tire yourself out

It’s much easier to go to bed when you’re tuckered out. Those who are active throughout the day will usually be able to fall asleep fairly easily. It can be helpful to get up and move before bed. Do some chores around the RV, stretch, and spend some time with other people. Engaging your body and mind will wear you out and help you fall asleep when the time comes. 

If you lay in bed for awhile but still feel restless, get up for a bit! Walk around the RV and try to occupy yourself. This will tire you out much faster than just lying in bed and feeling uncomfortable. 

9. Stabilize your RV

It’s hard to sleep in an RV if it’s constantly shaking and settling throughout the night. Unstable campers are uncomfortable, and they can shift at unexpected times. Invest in a set of good stabilizer jacks and try to find a campsite that’s fairly level. 

10. Take melatonin or another sleep aid

Don’t overlook the power of sleep aids! Sometimes it’s hard to relax, even if your environment is otherwise perfect. If you just need a way to kickstart the sleeping process, a sleep aid can help you out.

Melatonin is the most common and easy-to-find option. Another popular option is CBD gummies.

There are stronger medications you can take as well, but these might need to be prescribed to you. You can also try non-medical options like bedtime teas. 

Get tips from other RVers

One of the best parts about RVing is engaging with the community of traveling enthusiasts. iRV2 forums allow folks to chat with other RVers online, and get other perspectives on everything RVing, including products, destinations, RV mods, and more.

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