(Natural News) Sleep is an essential part of a person’s day. Sleep allows your body to recover from the day’s physical and mental tasks. The amount of sleep needed varies from person to person, but on average, adults need at least seven hours of sleep every night.
When a day is particularly stressful, it’s common for people to experience sleeping difficulties temporarily. Short-term insomnia can make it difficult to fall asleep on time and stay asleep until it’s time to wake up.
Temporary insomnia is one thing, but regularly experiencing difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, early-morning awakening, and waking up feeling tired, is a serious problem that affects about 10 percent of people. Chronic insomnia can cause daytime fatigue, mood swings, and impaired cognitive performance. These can negatively affect a person’s social relationships and overall quality of life.
Fortunately, there are natural remedies that can help give you a good night’s sleep.
A good night’s sleep
There are over-the-counter medications for insomnia, but much like other prescription drugs, these have notable side effects which include daytime drowsiness, lethargy, dizziness, headache, and even behavioral changes. Try these natural sleep remedies instead and find insomnia relief without the drugs:
- Establish a regular bedtime – Following a regular sleep routine can help your body realign its circadian rhythm or “body clock,” which tells you when it’s time to sleep and when to wake up.
- The bedroom is for rest and/or intimacy – Avoid doing other activities inside your bedroom, such as watching television or eating on your bed. Train your mind and body to associate the bedroom with only rest, intimacy, and sleeping.
- Avoid daytime sleeping – Daytime sleeping disrupts your body’s normal circadian rhythm. It may trick your body into feeling asleep during daytime and feeling wide awake at night, which will affect your normal daily routine.
- Avoid caffeine and alcohol – Caffeine is meant to give you an extra boost of energy, so drinking caffeinated beverages like coffee and soft drinks is guaranteed to keep you awake. While alcohol can make you drowsy, your body may eventually rely on it to fall asleep, which will only disrupt your body’s normal sleep-regulating mechanism. Moreover, excessive drinking will bring about other health issues besides sleeping difficulty.
- Avoid stimulating activities – Activities like exercise, eating, or screen time close to bedtime will keep your body feeling awake for a longer period of time, which gives you less time for sleep.
- Practice relaxing activities – Help your body and mind relax by practicing some calming activities like taking a warm bath, listening to soft music, or meditating.
Other natural ways to induce sleep
Take charge of your sleep routine with some more home remedies for inducing sleep:
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- Sip warm milk and honey – Instead of a glass of wine or other alcoholic drink, have a mug of warm milk with honey. Milk contains tryptophan, a sleep-inducing amino acid which promotes the production of serotonin, a hormone that works as a natural sedative, in the brain. On the other hand, the carbs in honey help transmit serotonin to your brain faster.
- Brew herbal tea – Most teas can help relax your body and mind, thus supporting sleep. For an even more effective herbal insomnia cure, try valerian tea. This herb, when brewed into tea, can help you fall asleep faster and produce a deep, satisfying slumber. It is also available in capsule form or as a tincture. (Related: Six ways to use natural remedies to beat insomnia for good.)
- Massage – Massage therapy has been known to benefit people suffering from insomnia by improving sleep quality and daytime dysfunction. It may also reduce feelings of pain, anxiety, and depression.
- Yoga – Yoga is a known remedy for sleep problems. It helps relieve stress and boost mental focus.
- Lavender oil – Lavender essential oil is used to improve mood and relieve pain, ultimately improving sleep. Taking it orally is thought to be more effective.
Learn about other natural remedies for insomnia at Mind.news.