It’s a fact that two thirds of the population has trouble sleeping. Lots of people deal with these problems by turning to sleeping pills and/or prescription drugs. But you don’t have to do this. You can overcome your sleep ailments by just making a few subtle changes to your daily routine.
A great place to start is in the bedroom itself. Make your room welcoming and peaceful. Get rid of all lights that might disrupt your sleep, including glaring alarm clocks. If noise is an issue, such as for shift workers, block it with white noise or use earplugs. Bedrooms are intended for sleep and not for work. Don’t use it as a home office.
Ever since you were born, your body thrived on routine. Use this natural tendency to set up an evening routine that signals relaxation and rest. Partake in your favorite relaxing activities, such as stretching or having someone you love brush your hair or rub your feet. Move past the worries of the day. Turn them over in prayer or write them in a journal so your mind feels that it can let go of responsibility for the night.
The human body was designed to sleep and wake with the sun. If you are a night owl, gradually adjust your bedtime earlier by half an hour each week until you are naturally going to bed at a reasonable hour. Stick to a consistent bedtime, even on weekends.
Try not to spend the half hour before bed dwelling on heavy topics that will keep your mind spinning all night. Don’t focus on work, finances, or relational problems. Turning off the television and the computer screen will help to create a more soothing sleep experience. Make every effort to nurture a calm, soothing spirit before bed.
What you eat in the hours before bed may also affect your sleep. Kick the caffeine habit after lunch. Keep sugar and alcohol at bay as well. Anything containing these substances will increase your internal nervousness. Keep any evening meals light. Avoid excessive fat and salt. They will only serve to boost your metabolism at the wrong time.
You would be shocked at how the things that you do during the day affect the sleep that you get at night. Working out regularly and allowing yourself a bit of a nap will not only make you feel better in your waking hours, but will help you sleep when you want to. Restful physical activity in the evening, such as a light walk or a gentle yoga routine, relaxes your body. Be sure not to exercise too much right before bed though. Working out too hard will make you have more energy even if you don’t feel it. You will find it harder to fall asleep.
Rather than getting a prescription for sleeping pills, think about going natural. Organic herbs will generally not affect your body negatively and will provide you with the sleep you crave. Try valerian, kava kava, lemon balm, melatonin or skullcap. Relaxing essential oils such as lavender provide scents that can put you in a relaxed state.
Did you know that foods can help you sleep? Some dietary sleep aids include turkey, pineapple, eggs, bananas, and peanut butter, among others. Eating a healthy diet will also go a long way to improving your quality of sleep. Minerals such as magnesium and calcium are essential to a good night’s rest because they help in relaxing your muscles. You should also be sure to take your vitamins. Be sure to eat a well-balanced, natural diet combined with supplements to meet all your nutritional needs.
Sleep can be impossible to come by if your mind is focusing on your problems. Get out of bed and deal with whatever is bothering you. You can just take a little while to clear your mind while keeping the room as dark as possible. You could also write down what is bothering you so you can deal with it in the morning, and so your mind can freely release it.
If all else fails, and you are still unable to fall asleep or stay that way, think about moving to another room to restart your sleep pattern.
It will take some time to get your body back to its natural sleep cycle. If insomnia persists, seek medical help so you don’t launch yourself into depression. With patience and consistency, most sleep troubles will disappear in time.