Lack of sleep also called insomnia can have an overall negative effect on one’s health and general lifestyle, hence, there’s a need to finding the best remedies that can improve your sleep.
Insomnia is a type of sleep disorder where individuals find it difficult to fall asleep, stay asleep or cause you to wake up too early and makes it difficult to get back to sleep even though one has the chance for adequate sleep.
Insomnia has also been associated with a higher risk of developing chronic diseases. Therefore it is detrimental to one’s health and personal life.
Even though a large number of car crash/accidents result from being drunk while driving, some other cause of car crash have been linked to sleeping and dozing off while driving.
Read also, Learn more about insomnia, types and causes.
Insomnia can also affect one’s ability to work effectively, therefore, the benefits of having proper sleep every day cannot be overemphasised
Causes of insomnia.
Physical and psychological factors can cause insomnia.
- Stress: This is one of the most common causes of insomnia. Concerns and worries about work, school, health, finances or family can keep your mind active at night, keep you troubled making it difficult to sleep. Therefore it is essential to learn how to manage and control stress. Stressful life events or trauma such as the death or illness of a loved one, divorce, job loss or rape may lead to insomnia.
- Poor Sleep Habits: it includes an irregular bedtime schedule, carrying out activities before bedtime and using your bed for work, eating or watching TV. Using Computers, TVs, video games, smartphone or other screens devices just before bedtime can interfere with your sleep cycle. Also, an uncomfortable sleep environment can affect one’s sleep cycle.
- Travel or Change in Work Schedule: Traveling across various time zones or frequent change in work schedule (day/night shift) can affect one’s circadian rhythm which basically plays the role of a 24-hour internal clock that is running in the background of your brain and cycles between sleepiness and alertness at regular intervals. Circadian rhythm is also known as your sleep/wake cycle.
- Medical conditions: Certain medical conditions can make it harder to sleep, such medical conditions include – arthritis, asthma, sleep apnea or back pain.
- Psychological issues: which may include bipolar disorder, depression, anxiety disorders, or psychotic disorders.
- Medications: prescribed drugs can interfere with sleep, such as certain antidepressants and medications for asthma or blood pressure. Some pain medications, allergy and cold medications can also disrupt sleep.
- External factors: this may range from both noise at night hours or bites from insects. Such noise might include sleeping next to a snoring partner and such bite might include bites from mosquitoes or bedbugs.
Prevention and Natural Remedies for insomnia.
If one can identify the causes of a problem then one can easily prevent it. Below are remedies for insomnia
Make Your Sleeping Space comfortable:
Sometimes the lighting system in a room can cause insomnia, therefore be sure that it is dark, quiet, and not too warm or too cold. Try a sleeping mask if the light is a problem. If noise is a problem, try earplugs. Also, ensure that the bed and room are comfortable
Avoid caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol late in the day:
Caffeine and nicotine are stimulants and are capable of keeping you awake even late at nights when you desire to fall asleep. Alcohol can cause waking in the night to urinate frequently or waking up for other reasons which may disrupt sleep quality.
If you’re unable to fall asleep but wish to fall asleep turn the clock around and only use the alarm. By clock-watching, it might unconsciously prevent you from sleeping.
Think Positive and Prepare a To-do list:
Avoid going to bed with a negative mindset, try to think and picture lovely/positive things while on the bed. If you are the type that worries about the next day work activities try to prepare a to-do list for the next day activity.
Avoid Heavy Meal:
Stick to light foods before bedtime, heavy meals may make you turn continuously in bed and also make you feel uncomfortable while trying to sleep or while sleeping.
Prepare and Adapt to a Regular Bedtime Routine:
Stick to a fixed time when you go to bed and also when you get out of bed.
Take a Shower:
Often times after the days’ activity you will feel tired and weak, try taking a warm bath or shower before bed this will help keep you energized and refreshed before going to bed.
Avoid Daytime Sleep:
If sleeping during the day keeps you awake at night against your wish then consider avoiding daytime sleep because it can disturb the normal sleep/wakefulness pattern.
This keeps your body and mind fit, avoid strenuous exercise especially when it’s close to sleep hours because it may disrupt your sleep. Try mind relaxation exercises like yoga etc. 30 minutes of exercise per day for most days of the week is also effective.
Put Your Phone on Silence:
If a call or notification from your phone or computer will prevent you from falling asleep or staying asleep then consider putting your devices on a silent mode that way the notification won’t disrupt your sleep.
Having identified the best remedies for insomnia, You should recognize what works for you and stick to it for a better sleep