The Sleep Prescription Book Summary - The Sleep Prescription Book explained in key points
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The Sleep Prescription summary

Aric Prather

Seven Days to Unlocking Your Best Rest

4.3 (95 ratings)
17 mins
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    The Sleep Prescription
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    Day 1: Resetting your master clock.

    Giraffes sleep less than five hours a day, while lions need sixteen to twenty hours of rest. The albatross – a giant bird that can travel thousands of miles in a single journey – can achieve REM sleep in flight and hippos can even sleep underwater!

    Every organism has its own unique sleep rhythm and as far as humans go – we’re pretty boring. Most adults need around seven to eight hours a night to feel their best. It’s pretty simple, and yet it’s become increasingly difficult to achieve. Why? Because our sleep cycles are being thrown out of whack.

    If you’re trying to improve your sleep, odds are you’ve heard of the circadian rhythm. This is basically a “master clock” that determines the rhythm of the cells in your body. Part of this is inherited in DNA, which is why some people are more likely to be early risers and others night owls.

    While this rhythm is partially genetic, it can also be influenced by external factors. The arousal systems inside our brains are constantly collecting information about the world around us and this process has a big impact on our ability to sleep. 

    For example, darkness is a powerful cue for the body to start producing the sleep hormone melatonin, while daylight triggers the release of cortisol. Our bodies are also very attuned to our habits and daily routines.

    In a process called entrainment, our bodies recognize certain “landmarks” throughout the day, like when we eat our meals or the time we typically go to bed. By recognizing these signals, the body can anticipate what’s next and optimize its functions accordingly.

    Which brings us to our first exercise. For day one, your mission is to pick a specific wake-up time and stick to it every day for the rest of the week. Sounds simple, but this has a powerful effect on our circadian rhythms, making it the number one strategy to combat sleep struggles.

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    What is The Sleep Prescription about?

    The Sleep Prescription (2022) is a practical guide to getting out of your own way and changing your behaviors to set yourself up for a better night’s sleep. It features seven days of clinical psychologist and sleep expert Dr. Aric Prather’s best tools and practices for finally achieving the healthy, restorative sleep we all need to feel our best.

    Who should read The Sleep Prescription?

    • Anyone who wants to improve their sleep
    • Those suffering from insomnia
    • People who want to learn about the science behind sleep

    About the Author

    Aric Prather, PhD, is a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the University of California, San Francisco, and a licensed clinical psychologist, specializing in cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia. The Sleep Prescription is the second book in a three-book series, which also includes The Love Prescription and The Stress Prescription.

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