Are you among the millions of us who are desperate seeking a good night’s sleep?
How many nights have you tossed and turned for hours waiting for sleep to come?
How many times have you suffered through late night televsion shows hoping to drift off to sleep?
You tried reading a book, but you’re still awake and you’ve finished whole thing!
You even counted sheep. To no avail.
You drank a glass of wine. And that didn’t work. You’re more wide awake than ever. (Actually, alcholol and cigarettes are not an insomniac’s friend.)
You may have even resorted to over the counter sleep-aids, against your better judgement.
As this pattern of insomnia continues, you are at your wit’s end!
After all, sleep is a terribly important part of the body’s repair cycle.
If you are not getting the right type of sleep, then you may not be resting as well as you should. This can lead to increased stress and health issues like a lower immunity level.
What’s worse, you’ll more than likely stagger through the day suffering from fatigue, drowsiness and irritability.
Trying to do your job is torture. And it’s killing your social life!
“What do they expect from me? I’m exhausted!”
It’s Harder Than You Think to Catch Up on Lost Sleep
We often don’t realize how much sleep we need. If you miss a few hours during the week then think you can make it up on the weekend, right? Wrong!
Catching up on sleep is a hard thing to do. Because we often neglect sleep for other activities, your deficit can be so large at the end of the week that you’d have to sleep all weekend to make it up.
The better idea is to get the sleep you need each night.
There are different levels of sleep. The deepest level is REM (rapid eye movement) sleep. This is when you begin to dream. It takes about an hour and a half for you to reach this stage. If you are tossing and turning it can be hard to get to this level.
During this stage, the eyes move back and forth. Muscles get most of the blood flow (besides the brain) for repair. All unneeded systems are shut down or kept to a minimum. Breathing is shallow.
But, reaching this level is difficult for many people. Including me. It’s harder than you think to catch up on lost sleep, so let’s get it right and get some sleep tonight!
So, if you’re not too bleary-eyed to read them, here are 10 tips that will (hopefully) help you sleep better:
1. Eat More Fiber
Following a high-fiber diet is good for your body and your brain — the brain which helps you sleep. Eat whole grains like brown rice and bulgur, plus lots of fresh fruits and vegetables.
2. Eat Magnesium Rich Foods
Magnesium-rich foods like beans, nuts, green leafy vegetables and whole grains, help your body produce sleep-regulating melantonin. A low level of magnesium can result in insomnia and fatigue. You can also try a magnesium supplement.
3. Eat Nuts Before Bed
We have all heard about tryptophan and its effects. You don’t have to have a turkey dinner to get tryptophan — eating walnuts has the same effect. They are a healthy superfood. One serving can help you to begin to feel sleepy.
4. Create a Lavender Foot Spa
Add a few drops of lavender to a warm foot bath. Light a lavender-scented candle and enjoy the calming aroma.
5. Drink a Soothing Herbal Tea
If you don’t like warm milk, try a hot cup of tea. Be sure it is decaffeinated or you will stayawake instead of feeling sleepy. Try an herbal tea like Chamomile, Passionflower, Catnip or Valerian.
6. Take a Relaxing Bath
If it works for your baby, it will work for you. A warm bath can help the body to relax and the muscles to unknot from the day. Try adding marjoram essential oil to your eveningbath.
7. Make an Herbal Satchet Pilllow
Fill a sachet pillow with lemon balm and inhale the soothing citrus scent.
8. Keep Your Bedroom Dark, Quiet and Cool
Although some people advise keeping your bedroom warm, I find that I sleep better in a cooler room.
9. Mist with Natural Scents
Essential oils like lavender and chamomile can help get you in the mood to sleep. Try misting your pillow with an essential oil spray, or just spraying the air so the scent lingers. This can help you get ready for bed each night.
10. Go to Bed and Get Up at the Same Time Each Day
Establish a sleep schedule your mind becomes accustomed to.
I hope some of these tips help you regain your nightly rest, because deep restorative sleep is critical to healthy functioning. Personally, since I discovered the importance of increasing my magnesium intake, that has become the miracle addition to my diet and nutrition program. It has made a big difference in my ability to sleep better.
Are you having a hard time snoozing?
What works for you when you can’t fall sleep?
Share your suggestions and comments with us below.