woman sleeping
Julie Hambleton
Julie Hambleton
November 3, 2023 ·  3 min read

Doctor Explains Why 4-7-8 Method is Best Way to Get Back to Sleep in Middle of the Night

Dr Michael Breus, a well-known sleep specialist and clinical psychologist, has earned the title of the ‘Sleep Doctor’ for his involvement in the field of sleep medicine. With years of experience under his belt, Dr Breus has developed a number of techniques to help his clients achieve better sleep and live healthier lives. He also often shares them on his TikTok page, @thesleepdoctor. One such technique, the ‘4-7-8 method,’ is his preferred way to help people get back to sleep in the middle of the night.

Expert Says The 4-7-8 Sleep Method is The Best For Falling Back To Sleep

Few things are more annoying than being woken up in the middle of the night, only to not be able to fall back to sleep again. You lie there, tossing and turning, wishing for sleep to return. Instead of getting some rest, however, all you can do is lie there thinking about how many hours you have before your alarm goes off, and how tired you are going to feel tomorrow. Thankfully, The Sleep Doctor has you covered, with many tips to help you fall asleep faster and with better quality Z’s. According to Dr. Breus, the best method is the 4-7-8 sleep method. (1)

The ‘4-7-8 method’ is a breathing technique that Dr Breus recommends to his clients who have trouble falling back asleep after waking up in the middle of the night. It involves taking a deep breath in for four seconds, holding it for seven seconds, and then exhaling for eight seconds. This process is repeated several times until the person feels relaxed and ready to fall back asleep. (2)

Read: 6 Sleep Related Diseases Your Lack Of Sleep Could Be Causing

Why Does This Method Work?

According to Dr Breus, the 4-7-8 method works by slowing down the heart rate and relaxing the body. The deep breathing encourages the body to take in more oxygen, which in turn helps to relax the mind and body. By focusing on the breath and controlling it, it becomes easier to quiet the mind and return to a state of calm.

While there are a number of techniques that can be used to help people fall asleep, the 4-7-8 method has a number of benefits that make it a particularly effective choice. One of its main advantages is that it can be done anywhere, at any time. This means that it is a useful tool for people who struggle to fall asleep while traveling or who work in high-stress environments.

More Benefits

Another benefit of the 4-7-8 method is that it is easy to learn. Unlike other techniques that require extensive training or knowledge, the 4-7-8 method can be learned in just a few minutes. This makes it an accessible option for people of all ages and backgrounds.

In addition to its ease of use, the 4-7-8 method has been shown to have a number of physiological benefits. Research has found that deep breathing techniques such as this can reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and improve heart health. These benefits make the 4-7-8 method an excellent choice for people who are looking to improve their overall health and well-being.

Fall Asleep Faster, Tonight

Dr Michael Breus’ 4-7-8 method is a simple yet effective technique that can be used to help people fall back asleep in the middle of the night. By taking deep breaths and focusing on the breath, it becomes easier to quiet the mind and return to a state of relaxation. With its many benefits, including its accessibility and ease of use, the 4-7-8 method is a valuable tool for anyone looking to improve their sleep and overall health.

Keep Reading: Longevity Doctor Takes 3 Supplements to Improve His Sleep


  1. How to fall back asleep in the middle of the night.” Youtube. Sleep Doctor. November 2022.
  2. The 4-7-8 method that could help you sleep.” CNN.  Kristen Rogers. March 14, 2023.