Do you lie in bed all night, looking up at the ceiling, worrying about the day ahead and how you are going to cope with no sleep, whilst your partner dreams on next to you? Is your lack of sleep affecting your day to day routine, making you distracted, unable to concentrate and feeling moody, with your body sluggish all day and you snapping at minor problems? Your brain feels foggy and you cannot perform your work or household duties properly and all you want is a good nights sleep but when night time comes around you are not able to fall asleep? If this seems all to familiar then you definitely have a sleep deprivation problem and you may have even been to the doctors for sleeping tablets. The problem with taking sleep medication is that they can sometimes leave you feeling worse. They might work fine for a few days but then their effectiveness begins to wear off and you are back where you started. It is far better to try a natural way to combat sleep deprivation rather than rely on artificial chemicals to attempt to induce it. Have a look at our sleep boosting techniques and see if they work for you.
1. Try to boost your melatonin levels. Melatonin is produced naturally in the body and is a hormone responsible for aiding sleep which the body produces at night. By taking supplemental melatonin shortly before bedtime this will help you to fall asleep faster. Clinical studies have shown that you can take melatonin safely for up to three months with no side effects.
2. Take Valerian. Valerian is an established herb which is used for treating insomnia and you can buy it at any good chemist or health shops. It works in a similar way to commonly used sleeping pills, but there is no problem of addiction. The way Valerian works is that it increases the level of a calming neurotransmitter in the brain, which relax you into a comfortable state of sleepiness.
3. Start exercising on a regular basis. If you have pent up energy that has accumulated throughout the day it has nowhere to go at night and will leave you tossing and turning in your bed. Release this energy by getting at least an hours brisk walking or half an hours running or a workout in the gym to get rid of any anxiety and tension. Try to get outdoors if you can as studies have shown that exposure to daylight is beneficial for people who suffer from depression, a common side effect of sleep deprivation.
4. Try using relaxation techniques. Just as you are about to settle down in bed, focus your mind on all of your days troubles and problems and waft them away, replacing them with the word ‘calm’. Breathe slowly – in through the nose and out through the mouth and let your mind slowly focus on your breathing, let your muscles relax and with every breath, feel the tension release as you become heavier and more relaxed. You may find a relaxation tape or cd useful.