Sleep Calculators

Getting the right amount of sleep each night can help set you up for a great day. Online sleep calculators are a useful tool that can help you optimize your nightly sleep.

By Nicole Gleichmann

Apr 21st, 2022

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Sleep is a rather complex and complicated subject that a lot of behavioral scientists are still studying. This is why we’ve done all of the complex work for you and have devised a sleep calculator to help you figure out approximately what time you should fall asleep. Why are these times important? Getting the optimal amount of sleep and falling asleep at the right time can drastically improve the quality of your sleep and leave you feeling refreshed after you wake up.

We realize that sleep works differently for everyone and everyone has different contributing factors as to what kind of sleep quality they’re going to get. This is why we try to include multiple time slots in our sleep calculator to help choose a time that’s best for you, while taking the scientific evidence to provide you with the most optimal sleep possible. Never have to second guess when you should go to bed or try to get some beauty sleep.

Q: How does the sleep calculator work?

A: When a person sleeps, there’s different sleeping cycles and these cycles are important to know. If you wake up in the middle of a cycle, you’ll notice that you have that hungover feeling and you’ll find it hard to get on your feet and moving. People often feel groggy, tired and stressed out when they’re awoken in the middle of a sleeping cycle. For this purpose, Howsleepworks takes the sleeping cycles and counts backwards. The ultimate goal is to help you wake up in-between the sleeping cycles which means you’ll wake up alert and ready to start the day.

Q: How long does it take to fall asleep?

A: There’s many different contributing factors to how long it takes the average person to fall asleep. However, the average person tends to fall asleep after 14 minutes of resting their head and in a state of relaxation. Again, this number can vary based on a person’s anxiety, how tired they are, their stress levels and if they’ve been consuming any amounts of alcohol. A good weighted blanket for sleep can always help.

Q: Does drinking alcohol help you fall asleep faster?

A: Yes, but not in a productive way or a way that you’d prefer. Alcohol is more of a drain on the body and its resources to make you a productive person. When you lay down while under the effects of alcohol, you’ll notice that you do fall asleep faster but the quality of your sleep is actually disturbed and you’ll get far less sleep. A lot of people report that they actually wake up far sooner than they normally would while under the effects of alcohol and they don’t get a full night’s rest. This is also leaving out the hangover and generally awful feeling you get with excessive drinking. We highly recommend going to bed sober and on a healthy meal with some glasses of water for the best sleep.

Q: How many different sleeping cycles is there?

A: This might vary from person to person but if we’re talking in general, you want to try to get 5 or 6 sleeping cycles for the best and healthiest sleep. It’s considered a good night’s sleep if you have 5 or 6 sleeping cycles but some people have less and some people have more.

Q: How can I remember more of my dreams?

A: Forgetting your dreams even immediately after waking up isn’t uncommon. The human mind sometimes tends to forget the thing or experience from the last thing we saw in a dream. There’s nothing wrong with your brain, so there’s no need to be alarmed there. Even a deep state of healthy sleeping which produces a pleasant dream can be forgotten. You’ll have several dreams throughout the night and the last one you have is the one you’re most likely to remember.

Q: Can howsleepworks improve the quality of my dreams or reduce nightmares?

A: Absolutely. While it’s not exactly known the exact cause of why people have nightmares, a lot of people speculate that it’s caused due to stress or irregular sleeping patterns. When people are on edge and stressed out, it’s not a surprise for people to somehow construct an imaginary version of real life events in a horrifying way. For example, someone feeling trapped in an abusive relationship might imagine being chased by a monster in their dream that resembles their significant other. Improving your quality of sleep will drastically help reduce nightmares and awful dreams.

Q: The calculator gave me multiple times, should I wake up at the latest one?

A: This depends but generally, you want to try not to oversleep. A healthy sleep consists of 8 hours, no matter how tired you are when you lay down. When you oversleep, you can actually wake up feeling tired again and your body takes a good portion of the day to adjust and get used to it. Sleep accordingly and try to shoot for a nice healthy 8 hour sleep according to our calculator.

Q: At what time should I wake up?

A: If you want to stay healthy, it is necessary to sleep on time and wake up early. We live such a fast-paced lifestyle that we don’t make time to connect with our bodies. We stay too much in our minds. Waking up early can give you time to exercise – a habit that will keep you healthy for life.

Align with nature

If you align with natural cycle of day and night, it is ideal to wake up before sunrise – around 5:30 am. The reason to align with nature is our bodies follow a certain rhythm which is in tune with the cycle of day and night. If you follow this rhythm, you will feel more energetic and your health will improve.

If you can’t wake up before the sun because of sleep problems, wake up after 7-8 hours of sleep, even if it is late during the day. As a Harvard study suggests, the key to productivity is to wake up at the same time every day.

Set a time to wake up and calculate back your sleeping time such that your total sleep time is a multiple of 1.5. This is because a sleep cycle lasts or 1.5 hours. So you should aim to get 4.5, 6, 7.5 or 9 hours of sleep. If you wake up without completing a full cycle, you will feel groggy. According to sleep experts, it takes about 14 minutes for a person to fall asleep. So also factor in this time when you go to bed.

If you can wake up early, the best time is before sunrise.  However, if you can’t, make sure you are getting adequate hours of sleep. Sleeping 6-8 hours is essential for staying healthy, unless you’re living a monk lifestyle.

Other Sleep Calculators

We’ve compiled a list of our other 5 favorite sleep calculators that you can find online for free.

Best Sleep Calculator for the Whole Family

If you want a calculator that you can use to figure out the bedtimes for people of all ages, try Because humans need different hours of nightly sleep depending on age, this calculator can be incredibly valuable for coming up with a sleep routine for your whole family.

Best Simple Sleep Calculator offers our favorite sleep calculator that’s straightforward and easy-to-use. Here you can enter in your wake up time and be given a general recommendation for when to go to bed at night. It’s based on getting 5-6 sleep cycles each night, which is a good goal for most adults

The Most Comprehensive Sleep Calculator provides our favorite sleep calculator online. It’s easy to use and provides comprehensive information on multiple aspects of sleep. Plus, it has you enter in how long it takes you to fall asleep. This allows for a more personalized recommendation than most sleep calculators.

Best Sleep Calculator for Naps has the only calculator that we found that includes 4 different options:

  1. Bedtime based on when you wake up
  2. Wake up time based on when you go to sleep
  3. Wake up time if you go to sleep now
  4. Wake up time if you take a power nap now

This makes it a great one-stop shop for all of your sleep-timing needs. Not to mention, they offer a lot of helpful education regarding things like sleep needs by age and tips and tricks for falling asleep and waking up.

The Ideal Sleep Calculator for Analytical Thinkers

Are you the type of person who enjoys learning about the whys and the hows? If so, try the sleep calculator on This site doesn’t have a traditional calculator—one where you enter the info and it spits out the answer for you—instead, it gives an explanation and equation that you can use to determine your sleep schedule.

Don’t Forget Sleep Quality

One word of caution: ensuring a good night’s sleep consists of more than just when you go to bed and when you wake up. Your sleep quality is also important. Try to take steps to not only ensure that you spend enough time in bed, but that you sleep well throughout the night too.