Insomnia is a symptom, not a disease. Stress related to work, school, health or family concerns. Depression. Use of stimulants, including caffeine, alcohol, nicotine or other over-the-counter or prescription medications. Prescription drugs, including some antidepressant, high blood pressure and steroid medications, can interfere with sleep.
Many over-the-counter medications, including some brands of aspirin, decongestants and weight loss products, contain caffeine and other stimulants. And antihistamines can affect urinary problems. Change in environment or work schedule. Long-term use of sleep medications. Medical problems, including fibromyalgia or complex diseases of the nerves and muscles.
Behavioral insomnia, which may occur when you worry excessively about not being able to sleep well and try too hard to fall asleep. Most people with this condition sleep better when they’re away from their usual sleep environment. Sleep
Sleep. That wonderful but sometimes elusive state of bliss and rejuvenation!
Best Sleep Tips
1. Sleep. That wonderful but sometimes elusive state of bliss and rejuvenation! I think it is most important to go to sleep with a “Quiet Mind”. Sometimes this is difficult to do. We all have trouble now and then. Sometimes, we are even afraid of knowing that we have to go to sleep.
2. Fear can be an underlining problem in many cases. There are many ways to quiet the mind. Doing 15 to 30 minutes of meditation or yoga can be very helpful. You must allow yourself to be distracted or get into your meditation or yoga and “let go” of the days thoughts…see Meditation.
3. Try tiring yourself out during the day, so that by the time you are ready for bed you are yearning for that pillow! Try exercise during the day to exhaust the muscles and mind. The moving is good when we are depressed too! It gets the blood flowing and makes us move past many issues. Pack your day with lots to do. Errands, class, shopping…whatever you can find to keep you busy.
4. Valerian Root is a wonderful, natural sleep assistanting herb and is considered the ‘valium’ of the herbal world. Herbal tea, half hour before bed, is wonderful for relaxing the digestive system if you are nervous or upset. Chamomile is great for this as well as Kava and Hops. Try brewing these herbs seperate or even together for a wonderful prescription for sleep! See Herbal Teas
5. Reading a book before bed is also good. This can direct your mind to a different place.
6. Diffusing essential oils of Lavender, Chamomile, or Clary Sage are all wonderful to induce a relaxed state and the soothing scents will calm your senses. See Aromatherapy
7. If you are taking a pain killer, be careful for many pain relievers actually have caffiene in them. Perhaps you may want to consider Willow Bark for pain.
8. Remember, we choose our thoughts, our thoughts do not choose us. Believe that this is so. To Believe is a powerful thing. The Universe supports ALL that WE CHOOSE to Believe. So do not torture your mind with troubled thoughts which will not allow you to sleep and are only distructive in the long run. See Belief Systems.
9. Block out light. To increase the quality of your sleep, research has shown that by blocking out light in your bedroom, you can improve your sleep pattern. If you can see your hand in front of your face, after the lights are off, then it is light enough to affect melatonin production. Melatonin is a hormone secreted at night by the pineal gland. The pineal gland is a small organ in the brain sensitive to light levels.
10. Eat Earlier. Eat at least three hours before bedtime. The further away you eat from the time you go to sleep, the better it is for you to have a better night’s sleep.
Managing Your Sleep
Sleep allows our body to rejuvenate and repair!
Don’t Smoke: Besides the fact that it can cause lung cancer and is the second leading cause of death for both men and women, nicotine is a stimulant and can make it difficult to fall asleep and stay asleep.
Limit Stimulants: Caffeine, alcohol, some aspirin and many over-the-counter and prescription drugs disrupt sleep. Avoid drinking caffeine or alcoholic beverages for several hours before bedtime. Although alcohol may initially act as a sedative, it can interrupt normal sleep patterns.
Limit Your Nap Time: If you are having trouble sleeping at night, try not to nap during the day because you will throw off your body clock and make it even more difficult to sleep at night. If you are feeling especially tired, and feel as if you absolutely must nap, be sure to sleep no more than 15-30 minutes, earlier in the day.
Keep a Regular Schedule: Keeping a regular schedule will help your body expect sleep at the same time each day. Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time everyday, even on the weekends. Oversleeping to make up for a poor night’s sleep, even a couple of nights, can reset your body clock and make it harder for you to get to sleep at night.
Create a ritual or pattern to prepare your body for sleep.
Be Pro Active and determined when it comes to finding the culprit of your sleep issues. Do not just brush it off to “that’s how it is”. It is always a revelation when we discover more about ourselves. Use your finding to improve your situation!
Spend quiet time by doing things that can make falling asleep easier. This may include meditation, relaxation and/or breathing exercises, or taking a warm bath.
Listening to Soft Music: cues your body that it’s time to slow down and begin to prepare for sleep.
At Night: Try to keep your bedroom dark while you are sleeping so that the light will not interfere with your rest.
Create a Sleep Journal: Overthinking is one of our biggest enemies. Write down your worries and possible solutions before you go to bed. Get them out of your head and on paper. This allows you to see your ‘fears’ in writing. This brings you one step closer to disarming your fears. A journal or “to do” list may be very helpful in letting you put away concerns and organize your mind in order to make tomorrow easier.
Go to Sleep When Sleepy: When you feel tired, go to bed.
Don’t Lie in Bed Awake: Get out of bed. Go into another room and do something relaxing until you feel sleepy. Worrying about falling asleep actually keeps many people awake.
Television in the Bedroom: is a real no-no! To much light, stimulating commercials and news shows tend to be alerting and keep us awake.
In the Morning: Expose yourself to bright light/sunlight soon after awakening. This will help to regulate your body’s natural biological clock.
Crystaline remedies utilizing the below stones have proved to be very effective in elixirs, placed in surrounding locations and worn during times of insomnia.
Crystals for Insomnia include:
The stone of spirituality and dream recall. Used for contentment and meditation. Provides common sense and flexibility in decisions. Strengthens and enhances psychic abilities, imagery and mind quieting. Wear when sleeping or when awake to reduce anger, impatience, and nightmares. Most effective on the Brow and Crown Chakra. Amethyst contains the grounding color of red with the energy of blue, which is expanding, spacious and flow of peace. Amethyst is the color that you see in the sky as twilight transitions into night.
Amethyst takes you on this transition from the magic time of dusk to a conscious shift into a different place. Crossing this threshold is the lesson of humility, which Amethyst can teach us. This stone can show us how to let go and trust; surrender so that you may see beyond the cycle that consumes your attention; give it all up, so that you can receive more; and bow, that you may become a part of the greater whole. Amethyst is considered a Master Healing stone.
Clear/misty white to brown. Helps us be centered, confident, capable and versatile amidst life’s challenges. Grounding to here/now and higher self. Graciousness, good listening/communica tion skills. Translate higher concepts to everyday language. Psychicness, clarity. Shows what we can/can’t change. Letting go (stress, addictions.. ) Insomnia, Central Nervous System, coordination, general healing. Both grounds root chakra and opens crown (& Throat) Chakra. Plant growth, protection against bugs.
This crystal is the most recommended stone for grounding and is associated with the Root Chakra, by encourages ones survival instincts and is centering. Hematite condenses scattered feelings, turns fuzziness into mental clarity, enhances concentration, memory, practicality, helps those who study, do bookkeeping, detailed work and helps with sound sleep.
Considered the symbol of life energy, hematite allows for more confidence, will power and boldness. Helps us adjust to being physical. A protective stone and helps bolster low self-esteem. Hematite is known to deflect negativity. It restores equilibrium, stability and is also used for astral protection. It brings our awareness back to the body and helps one maintain their sense of self. If worn, Hematite should be placed near the base of the spine.
Solid, med. to dk. blue. In meditation, opens Brow Chakra: higher guidance, intuition, connection to higher self, overview, decisions for good of all. Organizes, quiets mind. Opens Throat/Thyroid Chakra: Self-expression, writing, creativity, dream insight, allows total awareness… Anxiety, restlessness, insomnia, autism, shyness, nervous system, depression, serenity, self-acceptance; MS, speech, hearing, pituitary, DNA, lymph, inflammation, pain (especially head), protection stone. Shelters the wearer like a shield.
Extraordinarily deep blue stone often flecked with Pyrite. Can also be mottled with white Calcite. Most is currently mined in the USSR and Afghanistan. Beneficial to the respiratory system, especially the throat and lungs, the cleansing organs, and the nervous system. A good stone for blood purification and for boosting the immune system.
A powerful thought-amplifier and is helpful in aligning all the elements of the body and mind. Can increase psychic abilities and will open the third eye. Can guide you in teh direction of mental and spiritual purity. It should be worn as close to the throat as possible or at least above the diaphragm so that the energy of the wearer is drawn upward.
About the author
Andrew Pacholyk, MS, L.Ac. Peacefulmind.com Alternative medicine and therapies for healing mind, body & spirit!
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