Every night you go to bed tired and yet fail to fall asleep. You toss and turn from side to side but to no avail. You keep recalling the day’s events, tomorrow’s plans, next week’s plans, not to mention all those things that happened in the past! Your mind is spinning in circles, and though you’re exhausted, you simply cannot make the leap into dreamland. It’s almost as if you’re too exhausted to fall asleep, too agitated.
You’ve been to the doctor and have been through all the tests and examinations. Nothing was found. The doctor said: “you suffer from stress” and prescribed some sleeping pills. But you don’t want to get addicted to them, and they have side effects– they make you groggy in the mornings and may affect you in other ways too. On top of all of this, your sex life is in the dumps, because you are always too tired or too agitated.
Welcome to the insomnia club! You are not alone. Millions of Americans suffer from insomnia, some on an on-going basis, which means it’s a chronic condition. Insomnia is part of the fast-pace of modern life, and modern life = stress. And nowadays, life seems to be more ‘modern’ than ever.
Unfortunately, there is nothing more integral to our health than proper sleep hygiene. But don’t worry, I’m here to help. Nature has marvellous remedies for most conditions, though they are of course not widely known, as the profit margins are slim to none. Here are 6 natural, simple ways of relaxing your mind and body to help you fall asleep.
1) Warm Water and Lavender
Take a warm bath or shower for 10-15 minutes, prior to bed time. Add a few drops of essential lavender, sandalwood, or rose oil into the bath water, or rub the oil on your body in the shower. Relax your muscles and inhale the scent deeply. If you don’t have time for a bath or shower, rub a couple of drops on the back of your neck, at the base of your head. Chances are you will sleep like a baby!
2) Chamomile Tea or Warm Milk
Drink a cup of Chamomille tea, preferably of good quality. I have found that the Germany Chamomille, also known as Chamomille Matriarca, is especially soothing for the entire body. Chamomile has been used for thousands of years as a mild sedative and to ease upset stomachs. Alternatively, drink a cup of warm milk. Another timeless insomnia remedy, the tryptophan triggered by warming the milk boosts serotonin levels in the brain and induces drowsiness. Though this has been questioned in recent studies, even if the effect is psychosymptomatic– it works! Just ask your mom. Warm milk makes you sleepy.
3) Ayurevedic Massage or Self-Massage
For those who have a willing partner in bed, a massage would be of great help. Even if you’re alone, certain simple ayurvedic self-massage techniques have long been known to help induce sleep, and everyone who’s ever received one knows of the relaxing effects of massage in general. If it turns into foreplay, and you don’t want to get too excited by sex, you can always bring it to a halt. Or, alternatively…
Get some sex, for God’s sake! You are lucky! Think of all the people who have to do it by themselves! (And if you DO have to do it by yourself, do it well, and enjoy it! Chances are you’ll sleep much better afterwards. 😉
5) Light and Air Quality
Try to avoid any screens (tablets, phones, television, etc) at least 15min prior to sleeping, and make sure that your bedroom is dark at night. The windows should be covered to keep the street light out, and disconnect any electrical appliances next to your bed. It is also advisable to use an air filter with an ionizer to improve the air quality in your bedroom. Make sure to place it as far as possible from your bed.
Good night, and sweet dreams!