Insomnia has been a cause for concern in recent times; it is a chronic problem to many people. It makes people to visit their doctor every time for their sleeping pills. Yet most health experts believe that sleeping pills should be avoided whenever possible.
For many, insomnia is an occasional response to issues of life that keep you awake and thinking.
Insomnia may be a symptom of depression. There are good ways to treat depression that may cure your insomnia problems if the two problems are related.
Although, it may take weeks or up to a month to establish a new natural sleeping routine. The following can help:
- Stop taking alcohol in the evening. Although alcohol is a short-term sedative and may quickly bring on sleep, it interferes with deep sleep so that you may wake up suddenly after its depressant effect has worn off.
- Stop taking caffeine or caffeine related products like coffee, coca’s and teas because it stays in your system for up to 12-24 hours. It you realize that caffeine is responsible for your sleeplessness; do not use caffeine products for 12hours before going to bed. Take milk in place of caffeine products instead.
- Avoid drugs that may affect your sleeping patterns, many widely used over the counter decongestants and products containing phenylpanolamine can be stimulating as caffeine. Before starting a drug, ask your pharmacist if it might keep you awake and if another product can be substituted.
- Break your chain of thought before turning in try setting aside 30 minutes before bedtime to work on problems that might keep you up late. Make lists and diagram strategies to attack your problems. You will sleep better having in mind that you have taken steps to address those problems.
- Stop eating large meals before going to bed. The uncomfortable felling of having a full stomach may delay sleep. Try vegetable instead. This will satisfy your hunger without interfering with your sleep.
- Take a warm bath an hour or two before bedtime. This can soothe tense muscles and help make you sleepy. However, taking a bath immediately before going to bed may be too stimulating and keep you awake. Experiment without timing to see what works best for you.
- Exercise regularly. This will help relieve tension and clear your head. It will also tire you out, so you can sleep more soundly. Avoid strenuous physical activity for several hours before going to bed. It may stimulate you and interfere with falling asleep.
- Your bedroom should be quiet and dark. If noisy then try ear plugs. Many people like the reassuring sound of a fan or air conditioner as they drift off to sleep. A cool room temperature between 60o and 65oF is best for sleeping. A firm comfortable mattress is also important for a good night’s sleep.
- Avoid long, late afternoon naps short “catnaps” lasting not more than 20 minutes, can be surprisingly refreshing. Longer naps and those taken later than 4:00pm may disrupt normal sleep patterns and contribute to insomnia.
- Read in bed for a few minutes before turning out the light, this will help you relax and can increase feelings of drowsiness.
- Counting sleep is not recommended. Counting requires focusing the brain on specific activity. Instead, try picturing yourself in a pleasant place and use your imagination to hear relaxing sounds as you drift off to sleep.
- Try relaxing techniques before going to bed such as tag, hypnosis or simply listening to music.
- Stick to routine, your body’s internal clock responds best to a regular schedule. Try going to bed and getting up in the morning at the same time each day, including weekends.
- If you cannot sleep, do not lie there worrying about it get up and do something relaxing such as reading.