The need for sleep varies from person to person. Some people seem to have trouble going to sleep or staying asleep while others can drop off to sleep quite easily and do not wake for 7 hours. It is a great feeling to be able to sleep soundly for 7 or 8 hours then wake up naturally and bound out of bed feeling refreshed and renewed. However there are many people with varying degrees of insomnia who have to resort to sleeping pills to enable them to get a decent nights sleep. Many people prefer natural health remedies to help sleep problems to avoid the unpleasant side effects and dependancy on drugs.
Insomnia is a serious disorder that can lead to symptoms such as irritability, impaired reaction time and trouble concentrating. Sleep problems have been linked to the risk of developing heart problems, diabetes, premature aging and cancer at its worst. Most often insomnia is brought on by mental and physical anxiety and stress in our lives. It can be caused by existing heath conditions of the mind and body, certain medications or changes in environment that make us feel uncomfortable or anxious.
Very often changing your diet and getting some regular exercise is all that is needed to start getting a decent night’s sleep. Caffeine intake can be one big cause of insomnia. You might not think that just one cup of coffee in the morning or a couple of caffeinated drinks could prevent you going to sleep but it could make all the difference.
Although alcohol may help you get to sleep it can cause you to wake in the night. Your stomach should not be too full or too empty at night. Hunger can cause you to wake. Avoiding fatty and very spicy food at night.
Resolving insomnia can be a frustrating process. Trial and error can leave you feeling more irritable and stressed out than the sleep problem alone. So what can you do?
Natural Herbal remedies are a way of approaching the problem without risking negative side effects of prescription drugs like dependency. They are also much cheaper to use and easier to get than most prescription sleep aides. Herbal treatments are most commonly available in the form of supplements, teas, tinctures and Aromatherapy essential oils.
Here are some herbs that have been found effective for sleep problems:
This herb acts in much the same way that Valium does and can be affective for treatment of even chronic insomnia. However, it shouldn’t be used by those who have high or low blood pressure or liver damage or those who could become pregnant or are already pregnant.
This herb is especially effective in those who suffer from anxiety; it relaxes the mind and body making it easier to rest. It has been suggested that it may cause liver damage for some so caution is advised.
This herb is especially mild and can be used by children as well as adults. It is most commonly found as a tea and blends well with other sedative herbs such as hops. 5 – 6 drops of Chamomile essential oil can also be put in bath water to relax you before you go to be.
Lavender is the most readily available of all herbs used to treat insomnia. You will find it in the form of lotions, soaps, shampoos, perfumes and bath additives like bubble bath and salts.
A few drops of lavender in a bath can also be helpful, especially when used in connection with several drops of the oil on a tissue under your pillow. Just be careful not to get the oils in your eyes. Special pillows made of equal parts of hops, lavender, and chamomile are available from health stores and can help promote better sleep.
Passion flower is consider by herbalists to be an important herb for insomnia caused by mental worry, overwork, or nervous exhaustion. It is often combined with other herbs in herbal sleep supplements. It has no known side effects even when used in large doses.
The final solution for your sleep problems is often a matter of working out the underlying reasons why you are having trouble sleeping. Have a look at personal issues. work conditions, your general health and sleeping environment.
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