Discover 13 great home remedies for insomnia. After a long day’s work, you need to get a good nights sleep.
Insomnia refers to difficulty of falling asleep even when conditions to do so are perfect.
Some of the symptoms experienced by persons with insomnia include a lack of satisfaction with sleep, fatigue, mood fluctuations and low performance in mental and physical tasks.
Insomnia can be acute such as when you cannot fall asleep the night before a major test. This one will resolve with time without a doctor’s intervention.
13 Home Remedies for Insomnia
Chronic insomnia on the other hand lasts most of the nights of a week and resolves in a longer period, maybe three to four months. It can be linked to medical disorders or even psychiatric disturbances. If you are facing this condition, there are some simple things you can do at home to partially or fully resolve your sleeping problems.
1. Things you should NOT do.
Avoid beverages that contain caffeine. Caffeine is a stimulant and depending on your level of sensitivity the effects can last long keeping you awake. These should be avoided at least 3 hours before bedtime.
Avoid alcoholic drinks. This is due to the fact that they relax the nervous system making one fall asleep faster than usual. When the effects wear off, you will have difficulty maintaining your sleep.
Avoid smoking as nicotine in tobacco stimulates the nervous system making it difficult to fall asleep
Avoid heavy meals before your sleep time. These need at least four hours for digestion and will definitely be difficult to sleep while this process takes place. Instead have before bed-bites like a slice of chicken or a banana. Warm milk falls in this category as it contains tryptophan that processes serotonin which helps you sleep.
2. Prepare your bedroom
This might seem ineffective but having your bedroom in the correct order will have a profound effect on your sleep. Ensure it is clean and easily accessible. A favorite scent will go a long way in making you more relaxed and ready to sleep. You may also want to lower the temperature of your room using a thermostat as it makes it easier to fall asleep. In the event that you share a bed it is a good idea to get a bigger bed to avoid disturbances.
3. Try to adapt a regular sleeping schedule.
The body will soon acclimatize to the routine and will automatically push you to sleep at the stipulated time. The first few days may be difficult but it is definitely doable. An added advantage is that the body will adapt to wake up at a regular time.
4. Try Acupuncture.
This is a practice from traditional Chinese medicine that helps balance the energy within the body. It opens up nerve endings and signals the body to release neuro-endocrine hormones that aids the body in falling and staying asleep.
5. Tart cherry juice.
Is contains a large amount of tryptophan. The science behind it is that it converts to serotonin and then later to melatonin that helps maintain sleep by lowering body temperature and correct working of the nervous system. A or 1 cup will do.
6. Have a cup of chamomile herbal tea.
It has for long been used to help induce sleep. You can obtain it in stores as chamomile tea or buy the dried flowers. You may prepare the drink by boiling the dried flowers in water and adding honey and milk to taste.
7. Try out Magnesium Supplements.
Magnesium aids in correct functioning of GABA receptors. These receptors are the primary neurotransmitters relax the body by calming the Central Nervous System. Be sure to have a balanced diet and consume the magnesium supplements according to the doctors’ directions.
8. Saint John’s Wort that contains hypercine.
Hypercine increases the level of serotonin in the brain(1) by reducing inhibition action within the nervous system. Increased serotonin in the body essentially means better sleep. It is easily obtained in capsules or dried flowers or herb tops that can be used to prepare a strong tea. Honey and lemon can be added to taste.
9. You may also try out the minty Catnip.
It has a relaxing sedative effect that makes people relaxed and drowsy which is a sure way to get a good night sleep. It can be taken in the form of a strong tea where honey can be added to taste.
10. Noise levels.
Some people will only sleep in conditions of total silence. This is very difficult to attain. For extreme cases I would advise noise cancelling ear muffs. Background noise such as a fan can cancel the annoying noises and help sleep since it is consistent. For another fraction of the population, soft music does the trick. The quality of music also matters, classical music for example is very effective.
Aromatherapy using the correct herbs will definitely induce drowsiness. Lavender is quite effective in inducing a relaxed feeling. You can make a lavender sachet that you may place in your room for maximum benefit.
12. Make sure to have enough carbohydrates in your system.
For tryptophan to have the effect of sleepiness in the body, carbohydrates play a major role in ensuring that these substance gets to the brain. As insulin is produced due to carbs, other amino acids are directed to the muscles leaving tryptophan a chance to be absorbed into spinal fluid. In a nutshell, with enough carbs, tryptophan has the optimum conditions to help induce and maintain sleep after conversion to melatonin.
Meditation in quite effective in calming your mind and helping reduce stress-induced insomnia. It may involve sitting still and letting positive thoughts take over or even during yoga. The movements in yoga should be kept very basic to reduce the stimulating effect that may work negatively.
You can use these simple home remedies to get your sleep life back on track. You’ll will notice increased energy levels and happier moods. You ought to use all the above remedies with moderation to avoid any counter-effects. If you think your insomnia condition is chronic it is wise to consult a doctor who will advise accordingly.