Are you finding it hard to fall asleep? It could be the result of your own behavior and habits. Many people just lay in bed, gazing at the ceiling – may be due to depression, chronic pains, or even some sort of medication that conflicts with sleep. These persistent problems in falling and staying asleep are termed as insomnia.
Insomnia is a vicious illimitable cycle. Often fixing the cause of insomnia can help you get the sound sleep back. However, at times even addressing those issues does not help with sound sleep.
People suffering from sleep disorders end up worrying more about insomnia and its effects. They tend to become more agitated, closer to bedtime. But insomnia should not be taken lightly. If not addressed, chronic insomnia can result in serious health problems. The good news is that insomnia can be addressed and treated by making some changes in your lifestyle and sleep patterns. There is no need to rely on sleep specialists or prescription medications or over-the-counter sleep-inducing pills.
Below are some tips recommended by sleep specialists that can help get rid of insomnia and improve sleep habits.
5 ways to get rid of Insomnia
1. Limit activities in bed
The bed is meant for just two activities – seeping and intimate moments or sex. If you suffer from insomnia, do not use a cell-phone, laptop, listen to a music system, or watch TV while in bed. All these activities keep you alert and awake and make it hard to fall asleep. Also, this sleep-inducing environment establishes a strong bond between your bedroom and sleep.
2. Exercise regularly
Everyday activities convoke a lot of stress that can be relieved through moderate exercises, such as walking or swimming daily.
The effects of aerobic exercise (brisk walking, swimming, cross country skiing, pinning, dancing, running, walking, hiking, aerobics classes, and kickboxing) on sleep are similar to those of sleep-inducing pills.
However, ensure you do not engage in strenuous exercise, like jogging or gym closer to the time of bed as that may keep you count stars in the night.
3. Cut down on caffeine
Reduce caffeine intake in energy drinks, coffee, tea, or aerated sips, especially towards evening. Caffeine is a stimulant that triggers increased alertness by blocking sleep-inducing chemicals in the brain and causing a surge in adrenaline (hormone that increases alertness) production. It hampers the sleeping process, affecting deep sleeping. Rather have warm herbal tea or milk.
4. Address your worries and fears
It is good to plan your day ahead, but avoid doing it when you are on the bed getting ready to sleep – there are better things to think of, instead!
The intent is to sidestep thinking, instead attempt to sleep.
“Anxiety is the handmaiden of contemporary ambition” – Alain de Botton. This is so rightly said. Anxiety and worries increase insomnia problems. Body’s constant sense of fear or worry disrupts sleep patterns and even makes the person feel fatigued and exhausted.
Any unhelpful thoughts should not be carried in mind, especially when it is time to sleep. Such thoughts should be addressed before they become catastrophic and lethal. 15 minutes of meditation if you are experiencing anxiety attacks before going to bed or reading a book is really helpful. These will make you tired and distract you from negative thoughts and induce sleep.
5. If you cannot sleep, get up
If for some reason, you aren’t able to sleep, don’t just lie down and worry. Just get up and try doing something that will relax your senses, making you feel drowsy.
Engross yourself with something like reading a book, or flipping through some photo albums or magazines to distract yourself before going back to bed. Do not do anything that is mentally activating like checking power and phone bills, replying to official mails, etc.
Remember sleep is vital for your overall well-being. In the case of infrequent insomnia (that could last for a few days or a couple of weeks), positive modifications in sleep habits and lifestyle helps in relieving the problem of insomnia. However, in case of a severe condition, apart from medical supervision, a plan for what to do and what not to do before going to sleep is really beneficial. The above-discussed tips are beneficial in making a remarkable difference when it comes to addressing the problem of insomnia. Make sure to check out Sleep Standards for more useful sleep tips and information.
Maintaining a sleep journal is also beneficial in identifying the factors that lead to your insomnia. You can record your sleep routine, activities you did before sleep, and any factors that lead to sleep disruptions. This is a helpful way to pinpoint factors that are causing insomnia.