Getting enough sleep helps a person regain better energy during the day that helps them to accomplish more and become productive. However, the lack of sleep can produce a different effect where sleep deprivation results in frequent daytime sleepiness and the lack of energy to perform tasks. Everyone understands how important getting enough sleep and rest at night to make the body and mind highly functional. But occasionally or sometimes in the long term, sleep difficulty becomes a major problem that results in the condition called insomnia.
What is insomnia
Insomnia is a sleep disorder that results in the lack of sleep due to inability to sleep or difficulty in maintaining sleep. Individuals with insomnia may either have difficulty in falling asleep or to maintain sleep with frequent awakenings. Sleeplessness can result in many problems that can make a person lose energy and vitality during the day and may often develop depression. Learning how to cope with insomnia is important in order to make a person become more energetic and to feel more vibrant during the day.
Treating insomnia naturally
Chronic insomnia may require drug treatment, especially when the sleep disorder is caused by a long standing medical condition that results in the development of insomnia as its symptoms. Thus, treating the underlying medical condition with drugs may be indicated to get relief from insomnia as well. On the other hand, short term insomnia or one in its milder form may be treated naturally. Unlike chronic insomnia, the cause of the lack of sleep and difficulty in getting a good sleep is manageable in this case and there are many natural solutions for insomnia that can help you without resorting to other formal therapeutic treatments.
Meditation is a form of mind conditioning that helps the body feel relaxed and at peace with its inner soul. When a person meditates, it helps calm down the senses, promote slow breathing and reduces the production of stress hormones. This natural remedy for insomnia allows a person to focus on a specific object such as a sound or his breathing that helps increase awareness about his body and learn to calm the mind.
The commonly used form of meditation in helping relieve insomnia is visualization, which allows the mind to entertain the thoughts of relaxing images. This can be done within 20 minutes before going to bed as it prepares the body to be in a relaxed state, making it easier to fall asleep. This is a relaxation response that can put the mind at ease.
Avoiding energy slowdown
Some people tend to resort to taking too much caffeine during the day in order to give them enough energy to carry on with their activities. However, taking caffeine to prevent slowing you down can have a detrimental effect on your sleep, especially when taken late in the afternoon. Caffeine, alcohol and nicotine are stimulants that can make a person active even at night, making it difficult to get a sleep. Snacks loaded with high sugar content during midday can provide a quick surge of energy, however, the effect is short term and it can cause daytime sleepiness and a decline in energy. Healthier snacks from fresh fruits are better alternative to provide you sustained energy during the day without causing sleep problems later at night.
Use insomnia herbs to fight stress
Stress is a powerful source of fatigue that can result to insomnia. When the body feels tired, the production of stress hormones increases. As a result, the feeling of restlessness and fatigue may result in the difficulty of sleeping. Fighting off stress can reduce the risk of sleep problems and using herbs can be a natural cure for insomnia by helping relieve stress. There are known herbs that can fight off stress, which increases the body's ability to relax and enhance physical and mental alertness during the day. Magnesium and calcium is needed by the body to fight off stress. Herbal supplements for magnesium and calcium can help the body more able to fight off tiredness. Coenzyme Q10 can also naturally helps the body to increase its cellular energy to prevent fatigue and stress. Eleuthero ginseng can also increase the mental alertness of a person and at the same time enhances the body's physical endurance. Other herbal remedies for insomnia include the Ayuverdic herb called Ashwagandha that increases the body's vitality against stress and the medicinal mushroom called the Cordyceps that is famous among the Chinese in fighting off fatigue and stress as an energy boosting herb.
The use of essential oils like the English lavender is famous among massage parlors to promote mind and body relaxation. Using essential oils before sleeping can help promote a relaxed stated of mind that can induce a deep sleep that avoids midnight awakenings due to insomnia. You can place a lavender sachet near the bed or apply two drops of the essential oil to your pillow before sleeping. Some find the comfort of taking a warm shower with essential oil to promote a better sleep. Other famous essential oils that can promote a better sleep are the ylang ylang and chamomile.
Promote a sleep friendly room
Difficulty sleeping can be caused by a distracting environment. Make sure that your room is conducive for sleeping. A noisy room or a well lighted room can distract your sleep or can make falling asleep difficult. Sometimes a hard pillow or bed can also make sleeping uncomfortable. Turning off the television in your room can help promote a peaceful sleep. If this is not possible such as when someone else is watching it, you can always use an earplug and play soothing or relaxing music to promote better sleep. A dark or dimly lighted room is more conducive for sleeping.
Get light exposure during the day
Light therapy can have an effect on your ability to sleep. Persons who are exposed to light during the day produces melatonin, which helps regulate the sleep-wake cycle of the body. Exposure to light increases the production of melatonin in the body which improves the body's ability to sleep at night and promotes morning alertness. Melatonin supplements are also available, but you can get it naturally in your body by enhancing its production with light exposure outdoors.
Create a regular sleep schedule
The body has a circadian rhythm which is the body clock that tells it when to sleep and to wake up. Observing a regular routine for your sleep and wake cycle will help the body to adapt to this schedule naturally. By sleeping and waking up regularly at the same time every day, the body's own circadian rhythm will take control and you will find feeling sleepy at the same time at night and will wake up almost at the same time in the morning.
Keep a sleep journal
Every individual has his own sleeping pattern and needs. Not all of the above mentioned natural remedies for insomnia will work for everyone. It is best to keep a sleep journal in order to understand your sleep patterns better and to identify which natural solutions for insomnia you have tried to have a positive result to your sleep and what doesn't work. This will give you a better opportunity to understand your body and how it responds to the different natural solutions for insomnia.
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