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The Weirdest Solutions for Insomnia


Can't sleep? You are not alone. Throughout history, people have come up with some mighty weird insomnia "cures", including eating, drinking - and doing - some incredibly bizarre things just to try to get to sleep.


  • Some of the weirdest long-ago sleep-inducers are: getting some dog’s ear wax and putting it on your teeth (ick!). And, eating entrails from sea slugs just before bed (maybe this scares you into going to sleep).
  • Other cures are: eating fried lettuce or an onion before bed, drinking a tea made from banana and cinnamon or from lettuce opium (the milky fluid from the stems of some varieties of lettuce).
  • If you are into Feng Shui, you can move your bed so it is facing north.
  • And, of course, there is the old standby: boring yourself to sleep by, for example, watching a crossword puzzle tournament or listening to boring stories read by someone with a monotone voice. 

“Most of these bygone cures strike us now as bizarre—sometimes ingenious, but often repulsive....While some are riskier or more repulsive than others, most come firmly under the heading of ‘Don’t try this at home.’”"