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Natural Remedies For Insomnia
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Natural Remedies for Insomnia

Curing Insomnia Naturally

When someone has trouble sleeping, they often think they have a bad case of insomnia and that there is no way to address it. Off they go to the doctor for some sleeping pills. But sleeping pills can have side effects, and trying to find some natural remedies first is a good idea.

Sleeping difficulties can be resolved without having to resort to sleeping pills. Although there is no "one cure fits all" scenario for natural remedies for insomnia, there are many questions you can ask yourself that may help you find a simple natural remedy. Discovering the roots of your insomnia can take a while, but if you consider the following questions, you may find some natural aids that will give you relief from your trouble sleeping.

Why can't you sleep?

There are so many possible reasons for your sleep insomnia it can be difficult to pinpoint a reason. Reviewing the causes for sleep troubles and insomnia should always be a first step. There are no guaranteed natural cures for insomnia, because there are many issues involved in the problem. First, you need to consider the following questions:

How does your bed affect your sleep?

The mattress can be too soft or too firm. You could have a pillow that is too high or too low, or a bed that is just too old and lumpy to be comfortable. You could also be allergic to some of the materials that were used to make the bed, or allergic to dust mites or even to the laundry detergent or dryer sheets that you use in laundering your sheets. Do you sleep well in hotels or when visiting friend's or relatives houses? You might want to consider the size of the bed and the firmness of the mattress to decide which works best for you. Pillows can be critical. Sometimes a rolled up towel works better than a proper pillow. You might want to try a different mattress, buy a mattress cover for people with allergies that puts a layer between you and the mites, change your laundry detergent, or stop using drying sheets.

How does your sound environment affect your sleep?

Is your bedroom noisy? Do you find it difficult to sleep in silence? Noise can be the cause of your insomnia. A "white noise" generator or just a simple CD or mp3 track that can make masking sounds, waves, nature sounds, and other noises that will lull your body to sleep.

How does the activity of your mind affect your sleep? Are you under stress?

Who hasn't had the experience of a traumatic happening or whirling thoughts keeping them awake in the night? Even if you fall asleep at 9 pm, your thoughts can be as loud as an alarm clock at 2 or 3 in the morning. You might even have the experience of getting up to go to the bathroom and then not be able to get back to sleep? The natural remedy for insomnia in this case can be as easy as eliminating caffeine and alcohol, especially before bedtime. Most people know not to drink coffee or other caffeinated drinks (including sodas) after late afternoon, but not many know that alcohol also affects sleep.

What to do instead of tossing and turning?

Most sleep professionals will tell you not to lie in bed and stress if you can't sleep. It is better to get up and do something than to just stew in bed, worrying about not sleeping.

Temperature is important. You should make sure you are warm enough when you go back to bed. Cold feet or cold hands can also keep you from sleeping. Of course, in the summer, heat will also keep you awake. Trying to find a cool spot to even out your body temperature is important.

Simple and natural insomnia remedies for the "just can't sleep at 2-3 am" scenario are: try listening to some "sleep music," music that has special brainwave frequencies embedded in the music that will help your brain relax itself back to sleep.

You can try having some hot milk, cherry juice, or a snack with carbohydrates, all of which have the scientifically proven physiological effect of helping you to sleep.

You can try using teas to calm your system. Valerian is a common herbal remedy for insomnia, and it is available both in standardized extract form or capsules in health food stores. Follow the instructions on the bottle.

You can try taking melatonin, which is a hormone that regulates your sleep cycle. The best seem to be sublingual tablets, which are dissolved under the tongue. Sometimes a very small dose is quite effective. You can try less than 1 mg, as little as.25 or .3 mg. first, and this is especially effective for jet lag. Because this hormone is affected by light, make sure you take it 20 minutes before bed, and do not expose yourself to bright lights before bed, which will counter the effect of the melatonin. This includes the bright screens of cell phones and computers. Some people get headaches from a dose that is too large - you can cut back on the amount if you get headaches. And you can give yourself a further boost by getting out in the strong sunlight during the daytime to get your brain functioning in the right time zone.

And don't forget, if nothing seems to work, your doctor may have help for you without having to prescribe sleeping pills.

Your insomnia may be a clue to illness, thyroid problems, chronic pain, side effects or medication, even common ones, like cold medications. Insomnia can also be a result of an imbalance of hormones, poor digestion, depression, allergies, and more. It is always worthwhile to make sure you do not have any serious health problems brewing by paying a visit to your doctor.


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