Sleep quality is so important that your cognitive processes start malfunctioning once you start having trouble sleeping. This may lead to severe psychological problems and even impaired development in children. Sleep deprivation can cause issues like memory issues, trouble concentrating, mood changes, weakened immunity, weight gain, and increase the risk of diabetes and heart disease.
Chronic insomnia is a sleeping disorder but taking sleeping pills doesn’t necessarily solve the problem. While it can give a good night’s sleep, some people experience grogginess in the daytime. This is why natural remedies for insomnia are better in the long run to improve sleep quality which then improves daytime alertness.
What Causes Insomnia?
Insomnia is when an individual cannot initiate and maintain sleep for a minimum period.
The human body mobilizes defensive processes in an adaptive effort to maintain homeostasis. If these defences fail, insomnia may occur. Short-term insomnia is caused by changes in routines such as psychiatric illness, disability, and stress.
Acute insomnia may be caused by a change in environment, anxiety and psychiatric disorders, substance abuse, and health conditions such as hypothyroidism or sleep apnea.
Natural ways to fight insomnia
1. Reduce Stress levels
Your body can be under stress when you are changing especially, and this change causes psychological “torture”. The human body understands language familiarity best.
One way to help with stress management is by having a routine. It could involve activities you do before bedtime, and when you do them—performing these activities in a sequence regularly before sleep sends a message to your brain that these activities are a precursor to sleep.
So every time you change into your pyjamas, your sensory memory is affected, and the mind easily shuts off any intrusive thoughts in preparation for sleep. A change in environment might also cause stress. Try your best to maintain familiarity.
Work stress or financial worries are a common issue to dominate thoughts when trying to fall asleep. You can trying writing lists to metaphorically file it away and mark it as complete to help you sleep. And if that doesn’t work then you could try mindfulness meditation with controlled breathing exercises or progressive muscle relaxation.
2. Sleep-friendly diet
What you eat and how much it directly affects your sleep. Before bed, refrain from foods such as sugar, fatty foods, coffee, alcoholic beverages, and though not a food, cigarettes.
Instead, opt for foods that have natural melatonin levels, like nuts and meats such as lamb or beef, fish, chicken, and eggs. These foods help substitute the supply of melatonin when your body has reduced production.
Intermittent fasting is also a means of helping with insomnia. It involves taking meals of given caloric levels at specific times of the day.
Some causes of insomnia are an unhealthy and stressed gut caused by poor eating habits. This causes discomfort throughout the night. On the other hand, fasting helps clear up the gut and quiet down the digestive system during sleeping hours.
A medical expert should guide the intensity and frequency of intermittent fasting to avoid health problems.
3. Sleep-inducing ambience
You probably cannot catch sleep because the bedroom’s ambience is not right. As early as an hour before bedtime, dim the lights, quiet down or use sound-cancelling headphones, and avoid activities that trigger high levels of stimulation, such as exercise or blue light exposure.
Instead, take on relaxing activities like reading, a massage from your partner, or meditation. Consider getting eye masks or blackout curtains if the light is a problem.
Another key contributor to the quality of your sleep is how comfortable your bedding is. A comfortable, non-allergenic bamboo hybrid mattress should offer a comfortable surface to lay on. It also has a cooling feature for those hot nights, which matched with relaxation techniques is a sure fire way to fall asleep.
4. Sunlight Exposure
Serotonin is a feel-good hormone released in high amounts when exposed to sunlight. This is because serotonin is a precursor for the production of melatonin. These two hormones run the sleep-wake cycle in human beings. Also, exposure to sunlight triggers the production of endorphins and feel-good hormones.
Exercise increases the production of endorphin hormones. Endorphin hormones are produced when the body is under stress or pain. These hormones are the body’s natural painkillers released by the pituitary glands.
They are released when performing a pleasurable activity such as exercise or meditation. Endorphins reduce the effects of anxiety, stress, and depression, allowing you to sleep well. If you also follow it up with a warm bath to help your body relax, then sleep problems should not occur.
Insomnia is manageable and treatable when you follow the guidelines given above.