Sleep is something that we all need, but for some, the quest for a good night’s sleep can be challenging. Many people depend on sleeping aids or pills. Natural remedies can be more beneficial for your body. They can also help you sleep much better than you would when using non-natural products.
They will not have harmful effects when used long term.
On this page, you’ll find some insights into common sleep issues. And you’ll learn how your lifestyle and diet can change to make a positive impact on your rest time.
Common Sleep Issues And Causes
While many people have problems sleeping well, not every issue is the same. Still, the effect that insomnia has on everyone who experiences it is equally devastating. The following will help you understand the common disorders and situations that lead to poor sleep habits.
- Sleep Apnea: Can you imagine wanting to go to sleep, but knowing that you may stop breathing during the night? Sleep apnea happens when the throat’s soft tissue collapses or when the brain doesn’t send the right messages to the body to breathe. The two different types of sleep apnea are known as OSA and Central Sleep Apnea.
There are many reasons why people may suffer from sleep apnea, but it is generally hereditary or due to being overweight. Other reasons could be due to age, sinus issues, and allergies, as well as having a large neck, tongue, or tonsils.
- Narcolepsy: We all have sleepy days, but those with narcolepsy have sleepy days much more than you could imagine. They are essentially constantly tired and often fall asleep in even the noisiest situations.
From losing control of their muscles to hallucinations, those with narcolepsy live challenging lives. Losing control of your ability to walk and other problems with temporary paralysis are just some of the issues.
- REM Behavior Sleep Disorder: REM Behavior Sleep Disorder can be a big disruption for your night’s sleep. If you suffer from this behavior disorder, you may often talk in your sleep, hit things, jump out of bed, or even scream. Sometimes this type of sleep issue can lead to injury but often it’s a more disruptive experience than a harmful one.
- Sleep Terrors: While adults rarely suffer from what is known as sleep terrors, children often do. While a nightmare may have your little one waking up in fright, they aren’t as frightening for children. Sleep terrors can be very challenging as children are much more difficult to control. They may scream, thrash around, sweat, breathe heavily, or sit up suddenly. But, they often go right back to sleep afterwards.
Circumstances That Lead To Interrupted Sleep
- You are a parent of a new baby:You recently welcomed a new life into the world, but the little one is making sleep a challenge. Their sleep schedule is out of whack which means yours is too.
- You have a high-stress job: You may have a heavy workload at your job or in charge of a big team of employees. You find yourself thinking about everything you have to do, even at night which makes it hard to sleep. You suffer from insomnia caused by work-related stress.
- You suffer from anxiety:Anxiety can make sleeping a challenge due to your over-active mind and the stress you feel. People with anxiety may, at times, find it difficult to sleep at night due to worries on their mind. The problem with this is that an anxious person with a lack of sleep becomes even more anxious.
- You aren’t eating the right kind of food: Your body needs healthy foods and vitamins to function properly. This includes eating right to sleep right. Try to eat a well-rounded diet and healthy foods for dinner to ensure a good night’s rest.
- You exercise before bed: While exercise is great for sleep, engaging in high-intensity workouts before bed is not a good idea. It takes a while for your body to relax
How They Affect Your Life
How does the lack of sleep affect your life? For those with sleep disorders such as sleep apnea and narcolepsy, life can be a daily challenge without treatment. Doing something as simple as driving from one place to the next can be life-threatening. Fortunately, there are treatments and methods for helping these people live normal lives.
Those with sleep issues due to high stress and insomnia may not realize the seriousness of a lack of sleep. The following problems are often related to a lack of sleep:
- Weight gain: When you don’t sleep well, your body releases a higher level of stress hormones which lead to an increase of appetite. Typically, someone who is overtired will have a more difficult time choosing a healthy food option over “comfort food.” Another reason for weight gain is because your body demands energy. You aren’t getting enough sleep, so your body demands more food for energy and slows down your metabolism.
- Heart issues: There are many issues that contribute to heart problems, but sleep deprivation definitely impacts your heart’s health. Sleep problems can lead to weight gain and high blood pressure, which are contributing factors to heart problems.
- Depression: A lack of sleep can lead to neurological problems as well. Fatigue has a big effect on your mood. Those who may already have problems with depression can find themselves having more serious episodes after sleep deprivation.
- Anxiety: If you have ever experienced sleep deprivation over several days, you may have experienced increased anxiety. You may have found yourself feeling paranoid or jumpy. A lack of sleep can cause you to feel anxious about things that wouldn’t normally worry you.
- Decreased mental alertness: Whether you have a demanding job or have to study if you haven’t had enough sleep focusing can feel nearly impossible. Insomnia can make it challenging to concentrate on details and information. After many nights of sleep deprivation, something as simple as driving can become dangerous. Fatigue is a big factor in many vehicular accidents.
Lifestyle Changes Can Help: What Are They?
The above issues and sleep disorders may have you asking what the solution is. Repeated nights of no sleep can lead to serious illnesses. Those with serious sleep disorders may need treatment and medication. And your family doctor will be able to give you an assessment of best medical options.
Those with insomnia or high-stress levels may find the following lifestyle changes and natural sleep remedies can help:
- Diet: Diet has a big impact in our everyday life. From your energy levels to your sleep pattern, what you eat makes a difference. For example, sugar, spicy foods, and of course, drinks with caffeine can disrupt your sleep.
Natural sleep aids may lie in the foods that you eat. Eating oranges, oatmeal, cherries, or eggs can all help you to sleep better at night. Apart from the vitamins in your food, eating foods that fill you up is beneficial for sleep.
- Exercise: Exercise is one of the most important things that you can do for your body and your sleep. Just keep in mind that exercise at night isn’t the best. You will most likely feel energetic afterward and won’t be able to “turn off” for quite some time.
Exercise helps your body function properly which can lead to a good night’s rest. It also helps to relieve stress which is a major factor in sleep deprivation. Exercise is one of the best natural ways to help you sleep.
- Natural Products:Those with serious insomnia may still not be able to sleep, even with the above lifestyle changes. This is where natural sleep supplements may be able to help. Natural sleep aids are much better for you than medication and typically more affordable.
The following are some natural sleep remedies that can improve your sleep habits and take away insomnia:
- Herbal Tea: Herbal teas made from chamomile and valerian root can be a great way to get to sleep. These herbal teas are beneficial in calming your body. The act of sipping on a tea before bed is also a great way to wind down and relax.
- Magnesium: Magnesium is considered to be a substance that is greatly beneficial in reducing stress. If you have recently found yourself in a bout of insomnia, try taking magnesium supplements at night. There are different ones that you can choose from, but always try taking one that is known to have a calming effect.
- John’s Wort: Known to be helpful as an anti-depressant, St. John’s wort also helps encourage sleep. As a natural supplement, you don’t have to be worried about the groggy after-effects associated with non-natural aids.
- Essential Oils: Various essential oils have been known to help induce sleep. Bergamot, lavender, cedarwood, and sandalwood are some of the essential oils you can trust for sleep benefits.
- Hops: Think about how beer may make you feel. Many people feel sleepy after only one or two beers. That’s because you may be feeling the effects of hop flowers. Hops are used as a sedative for those who struggle with insomnia. You only need a little to start drifting off to sleepy-land.
- Warm milk and honey: You probably remember drinking this before bed as a child. Your mom or dad swore on it as one of the natural ways to help you sleep. Does it work? The combination of the milk (calcium) and honey together make it a great serotonin inducer. Serotonin is great for calming anxiety and stress.
The above natural remedies can be beneficial for most people who have a difficult time getting to sleep. They can calm your nerves, relax your body, and help to relieve feelings of stress. While those with serious sleep disorders may need treatment, most individuals will see a difference in their sleep with these sleeping aids.
Techniques For Good Sleep Habits
For a good night of rest, the following practices in combination with the above natural remedies will greatly help:
- Try meditation before bed. This isn’t for everyone, but it can help to calm your mind if you suffer from stress-related insomnia. As you focus on your breathing and calming yourself, you may see a difference in your sleep habits.
- Don’t take naps in the afternoon. As drowsy as you may feel, avoid that after-lunch nap. This can cause you to feel restless before bed. Hold out for the night when you really want to sleep.
- Avoid watching T.V right before bed.It may be a common way to wind down, but it isn’t always effective. While you may want to catch up on your TV series, try to watch it earlier and end the night with a book in hand. Reading can help you to doze off much quicker than the white light of your television.
- Use a fan in your room or a noise machine. Some people are very sensitive to noise when they are trying to sleep. The neighbors talking, the cat meowing outside, or the cars driving by can all make sleep difficult. Using the steady noise of a fan or some type of noise machine can help you to sleep better than ever.
- Don’t stress about sleeping. If you have been through several nights of insomnia, it may be challenging to get to sleep. You may be stressing about bedtime before it even happens. Don’t. Instead, focus on doing something relaxing before bed that will get your mind off of your insomnia.
You Can Sleep Again
A lack of sleep can be both physically and emotionally draining. It can wreak havoc on your everyday life and cause you to feel upset and irritable. Getting your sleep habits under control whether through techniques or natural remedies for insomnia is important for your happiness.
While it may be challenging at first, try to keep your stress and anxiety down through various means. These two issues have a big part to play in insomnia and should be taken care of. Take natural remedies for sleep and see how your life will change!