Get Help To Relax And Banish Negative Thoughts

Try Subliminal Audio For Free!

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Help Sleeping

If a man had as many ideas during the day as he does when he has insomnia, he'd make a fortune.  ~Griff Niblack

Ok, that’s amusing but I guess that if you’re reading my blog to get help sleeping, you’re in no mood for funny quotes at the moment.  However, please don’t be disheartened because suffering from lack of sleep is extremely common and you are alongside Isaac Newton, Benjamin Franklin and Charles Dickens who are only a few of the illustrious people who have documented their difficulties with sleep. Oh, I forgot to include myself in the list!

By far the most common cause of insomnia is related to - yes you guessed it - stress. For some people, their insomnia starts in response to a stressful event and continues even when the stress has been resolved. This is because they have learnt to associate the sleeping environment with a state of being alert.
Causes of stress can be:
  • situational - for example, worrying about work, money or health, families, relationships,
  • environmental, such as noise,  
  • death or illness of a loved one.
What can you do to get a good night’s sleep again?  

Firstly, if you are really concerned about eliminating other causes of this debilitating situation which could include certain underlying physical or mental diseases or even a side effect of particular medications, I advise a medical check-up.  That would be one of your stresses out of the way which would be a good start!

The next step to take to get you back on track is to establish a good bedtime ritual (known as “sleep hygiene”) and it’s important to do this consistently to re-educate your mind and body.  The following is a guide:
  • establish fixed times for going to bed and waking up (and avoid sleeping in after a poor night's sleep),
  • try to relax before going to bed,
  • maintain a comfortable sleeping environment (not too hot, cold, noisy or bright),
  • avoid napping during the day,
  • avoid caffeine, nicotine and alcohol within six hours of going to bed,
  • avoid exercise within four hours of bedtime (although exercise earlier in the day is beneficial),
  • avoid eating a heavy meal late at night,
  • avoid watching or checking the clock throughout the night, and
  • only use the bedroom for sleep and sex.
In addition, certain cognitive behavioral treatments (CBT) are recommended by doctors as they are known to be very successful in curing insomnia.  CBT aims to change unhelpful thoughts and behaviors that may be contributing to the problem and include relaxation techniques, stimulus control and other methods to train yourself to sleep.

Medical practitioners are reluctant to prescribe sleeping tablets long-term as they tackle only the symptom, not the cause and often lose their effectiveness after a few weeks anyway.

If you feel you want more help sleeping, then I wholeheartedly recommend a book which is available from Amazon called “The Insomnia Workbook: A Comprehensive Guide to Getting the Sleep You Need” by Stephanie Silberman.
 The Insomnia Workbook: A Comprehensive Guide to Getting the Sleep You Need The author is a licensed psychologist and sleep medicine specialist and this book has highly-rated reviews.  It is inexpensive, comprehensive and simulates, in particular, the experience of seeing a cognitive behavioural therapy sleep specialist and has a complete and effective plan to getting the sleep you need.  You can click on the picture of the book to the right and find out more.  I have also found it really helpful to listen to relaxation techniques when going to bed.  It helps clear the mind and get rid of any physical tension.  I personally find that so-called "relaxing music" does nothing for me and prefer a soothing female voice, for example Letting Go Into Deep Sleep 
which is wonderfully calming and very long (very good value for 99 cents and instantly downloadable!).

It may take a combination of strategies to regain your perfect sleeping pattern but, believe me, it will be well worth the effort!  Remember:

A ruffled mind makes a restless pillow.  ~Charlotte Brontë

No comments:

Post a Comment