If you don’t know how to get a good night’s sleep, you’re not the only one because in a report published by the CDC, the number of people who don’t get enough rest has reached epidemic proportions.
As the report points out, people today simply don’t get enough sleep and this can lead to all sorts of health problems, loss of productivity and even accidents. And according to scientists, it’s not just because there isn’t enough time to rest, but there are disorders that prevent people from sleeping at night.
Common Sleep Disorders
In other words, there’s no question that sleep is necessary, but why is it so difficult for many people? Before we provide the possible solutions, an overview of common sleep disorders is in order.
- Insomnia: insomnia is a condition characterized by difficulty sleeping at night or sleeping poorly. In some cases, insomnia is a short term condition while among others it is for the long term and lasts for months. Although the cause of insomnia is currently unknown, the symptoms are well known so you can tell if you have this condition or not. You can read our Insomnia Cures article too.
- Snoring: snoring also makes it difficult for the individual to rest
- Sleep apnea: a condition marked by shallow breathing during rest
- Stress: it’s no secret that stress and anxiety are among the reasons why some people have difficulty sleeping. Usually, the events of the day, be it related to work, family, finances, relationships etc. affect how well an individual can sleep.
The good news is that regardless of the problem, there are solutions available that can help, and these solutions are natural and safe.
What is Sleep Hygiene?
It refers to a series of practices and habits that will help you sleep at night, ensuring you wake up the following morning refreshed and alert for the rest of the day. It is made up of different components, but the most important is maintaining a sleep pattern every day. It also means making sure you don’t oversleep, but there are other aspects you need to consider:
- Avoid napping during daytime
- Avoiding alcohol, caffeine and other stimulants before going to bed
While sleep hygiene can help, it can only go so far in terms of helping you rest on a consistent basis, but fortunately there other natural solutions available such as the following.
Natural Sleeping Pills
These are the best option because they have been specially formulated to help you rest at night quickly and awake the next morning refreshed. Since these products are natural, you need not worry about side effects or becoming addicted to it.
Before moving on, the difference between natural sleep aids and the artificial ones made by pharmaceutical companies have to be clear. First of all, no matter what those drug companies may say, those pills carry a lot of risks and side effects including constipation, headaches, physical weakness among others. Also, those are just the short term effects, and the long term effects could be worse, such as addiction.
For these reasons, you should take natural pills since they are not only effective but also proven safe. Besides these pills however, there are other options.
Read our articles on the Best Sleeping Pills from natural sources.
Melatonin is a hormone that regulates your rest cycle, and for this reason makes an excellent supplement for those who have trouble sleeping. The importance of this hormone cannot be stressed enough, because the latest research reveals that insufficient levels of the hormone leads to difficult sleeping. Researchers also point out that there is a link between low melatonin levels and rest disorders, so taking melatonin supplements may help.
Read our Melatonin Pills article.
Yoga And Other Relaxation Techniques
Yoga, meditation and other similar methods can also help. There are different types of meditation, but the end goal is basically the same, and that is to limit the amount of anxiety hormones your body produces by slowing down your breath. By learning to practice meditation, you will discover how to rest your body and eliminate stress, which is one of the reasons why you are having trouble sleeping in the first place. Aside from yoga, you may also want to try Tai Chi or simply practice deep breathing. Whenever you’re feeling stressed out, sit down and take a few deep breaths.
Diet And Meals
The food you eat has a huge effect on your sleeping pattern. As pointed out earlier in the sleep hygiene section, alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine produce detrimental effects on sleep, mainly because they will keep you awake at night. If you keep on taking these in the evening, you might develop insomnia. You should also avoid chocolates, tea and soft drinks before bedtime because they will keep you awake.
Instead you should increase intake of foods rich in carbohydrates and vitamin B such as bananas, whole grain crackers and sunflower seeds, and it will also help if you eat plenty of green leafy vegetables because they are rich in magnesium, which is essential for reducing tension and stress.
You can also drink half a cup or a cup of tart cherry juice before you go to bed. There’s evidence that this drink works because it is rich in tryptophan, an amino acid which, once in your body is turned into melatonin, the hormone that regulates your sleep cycle.
A lot of people seem to think that drinking a glass of milk before going to bed is going to help you rest better. In truth there is no conclusive scientific evidence to prove this, but there could be a psychological effect. The fact is some people find the taste soothing and it helps them relax. If that’s how milk makes you feel, then you should drink a glass before calling it a day.
There are several herbs that can improve your sleeping habits, such as vitex agnus castus. This herb has been subject to several studies, all of which prove its efficiency in terms of relieving insomnia symptoms.
Valeriana officinalis is another herb that has shown promise when it comes to relieving disorders. While further research is necessary, evidence obtained from preliminary studies indicate that this is effective in treating stress and depression, two of the most common causes of disorder.
Aside from these two herbs, research shows that chamomile tea and lemon balm are also effective. All of these herbs are now available in supplemental form, but make sure you read the rest of the ingredients before taking them, and be certain that the supplement was formulated specifically for sleep.
Snoring Aids And Solutions
There’s no reason for you or your partner to put up with snoring because there are several products and solutions that can alleviate it. However, the biggest challenge if you’re a first time buyer is making sense of all these products. To help you out, here is a brief overview.
Anti-snoring mouthpieces are the most widely used, one reason being there is clinical evidence to prove that they work, although the efficiency varies on a case to case basis. If you decide to use one, read some reviews first and check the design to see how comfortable you will be wearing it while you rest.
Chin straps are also used to prevent snoring. If you’ve never seen one, it works exactly like the name suggests, by strapping your chin, effectively closing your mouth and preventing you from snoring. A chin strap is usually fitted around your chin, but while the basic principles are the same, there are various designs to choose from.
Nasal products come in different forms and include inhaled sprays and nasal strips, all of which are designed to keep your nostrils open so you can breathe easily during rest. Some of these nasal products have been developed to help those with allergies, cold, flu and other sinus problems.
It should be pointed out that the quality of these nasal products vary greatly, and some of them can be used only in specific situations. You should research the product thoroughly before buying one.
Anti-snoring pillows are now available, and while they look like ordinary pillows these were manufactured specifically to treat snoring problems. The way these pillows work varies, but usually they contain chemicals or elements that will allow you to sleep better.
CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) devices are specially designed –and expensive- systems used to treat severe snoring problems. As an airway pressure system, the device works by forcing air inside your body by way of the mask you are going to wear. While the device can work, it will cost you at least $1,000, making it impractical for most people.
These methods will go a long way towards helping you get a good night’s sleep, but if you’re serious about knowing how to get a good night’s sleep, then you should try Lunar Sleep, an all-natural aid that helps you fall asleep quickly and continuously so that when you wake in the morning, you’re fresh and alert, plus there are no unpleasant side effects. Unlike artificial pills, Lunar Sleep contains pure melatonin, which is crucial for ensuring you get enough rest at night.