Insomnia is one of the most common health complaints among adults and while many turn to over-the-counter drugs to help, there are natural sleep remedies just as effective without the side effects that come with medicine. The National Sleep Foundation found that for most cases, sleep troubles are the result of some other outside difficulty, most commonly stress. Addressing these other issues often means sleep will come easier.
Natural Sleep Remedies
Often getting productive sleep at night starts with addressing the stressors that occur during the day, and natural sleep remedies can help ease the anxiety that comes with bedtime. For those who experience frequent difficulty sleeping, the thought of going to sleep can be a stress in itself, so a careful bedtime routine is an important start to ease these feelings. This routine actually starts much earlier in the day by removing harmful stimulants that will prevent sleep in the nighttime. Cutting back or eliminating caffeine, especially later in the day, is important to getting a good sleep later. Alcohol and nicotine should be avoided as well. Eating or drinking too much close to bedtime can also be an impediment to sleep, so make sure dinner comes early enough in the evening to avoid creating problems. Any naps should be kept far from bedtime to avoid difficulties when it comes time for sleep.
For those looking to avoid using over-the-counter-drugs, creating a set bedtime routine is another important step. This should begin at least an hour before getting into bed by limiting stimuli, turning off lights and lowering music or television that might cause distractions and prevent relaxation from setting in. The bedroom itself should be kept dark and cool, free from clutter or other things that may cause anxiety. When bedtime comes, the room should be kept free from distractions. White noise machines or bedside fans can be very effective at blocking out unwanted noises and helping keep the focus on sleep.
Exercise can be an important for people seeking natural sleep remedies, just as long as it does not come too close to bedtime. Keeping a set exercise routine earlier in the day can help reduce stress throughout, eliminating one of the biggest causes of insomnia and promoting a deeper sleep at night. For those who don’t have time to make it to the gym, other relaxation techniques can be just as effective. Yoga, meditation and even guided imagery are helpful in creating the kind of low-stress environment that lead to better sleep.
Natural Sleep Remedies – The Conclusion
Studies show that up to half of adults experience at least one symptom of insomnia a few nights during the week and natural sleep remedies can be a good counter to a common problem. But for some, reducing stress or creating a bedtime routine isn’t enough. For those who have tried these natural sleep remedies but still find difficulty, keeping a sleep journal that chronicles when sleep difficulties occur can identify what causes problems and help doctor find the best ways to get a good night’s sleep.