(NaturalNews) Insomnia is a sleep disorder that occurs when a person is tired, but cannot fall asleep, or cannot stay asleep once they do fall asleep. While the disorder primarily affects adults, women report a problem with it more than men. It also tends to worsen as a person ages. Insomnia can be a particularly frustrating disorder to deal with since, eventually, the lack of sleep can affect other areas of the person's life.
While there are over the counter (OTC) medications that are designed to help with insomnia, they are best relegated to those instances when insomnia is only an occasional concern. Preferably, however, it is best to avoid OTC medications altogether when treating insomnia as they have a propensity to make the issue worse. Alternatively, there are a number of natural remedies available. Seven of the most effective ones are listed below.
Often taken as a tea, chamomile is a well-known relaxant, making it a commonly used way to address insomnia. A natural sleep aid that is herbal in nature, chamomile tea is best consumed about 30 minutes before it is time to turn in for the night.
This compound is naturally found within the body, although levels start to dip with age. Taking melatonin about thirty minutes before bedtime sets the body up for a restful night's sleep. Low doses are typically side effect free.
5-Hydroxytryptophan is a herbal compound is a natural metabolic intermediate in the biosynthesis of serotonin. Serotonin is a chemical in the body that helps regulate anxiety and depression. While taking 5-HTTP is fine for short-term use, long-term use should be avoided in order to reduce the likelihood of side effects.
The sedative properties of passion flower are well-known. It is particularly helpful for treating insomnia in women who are menopausal. The tincture containing passion flower is easy and convenient to use. Drinking 10 to 20 drops of it in a glass of water before bedtime is the recommended dosage.
This dietary supplement has its roots in ancient times. While it is an effective cure for insomnia, those people using the extracts or herb of the valerian root should not take other supplements and medications at the same time.
Kava is prized for its uses against anxiety. However, like other herbs that are known to reduce anxiety, it is necessary to be aware of potential and severe side effects that could occur.
Also known as winter cherry or ashwagandha, Withanian somnifera can be taken in pill form, as an extract or as an herbal tea. Imbibing W. somnifera close to bedtime can help reduce stress and stave off insomnia.
With a little research and experimentation, an insomniac can find the herbal solution that works best for them.
About the author: Sofiya has written articles on most health-related topics, including traditional medicine, alternative and naturopathic and natural treatments, wellness, medical marijuana, diets and fitness.