How Can I Get Rid Of My Insomnia?

How Can I Get Rid Of My Insomnia?

When you suffer from insomnia it can affect every aspect of your life. It can be hard to imagine how you will overcome this condition and finally get some sleep but be reassured to know that insomnia can be overcome,  but how can you get rid of insomnia?

We all have the potential to develop insomnia at some point in our life. Certain factors can provoke sleepless nights such as an uncomfortable bed, a noisy street, a crying baby or stress. Each person will experience sleeplessness different and something that may trigger you mightn’t trigger your partner or family member.

When some typical triggers are removed your sleeping can return to as it was before. However, if your insomnia is caused by changes you have made it can become chronic insomnia1.

Tips to get you sleeping again

  1. Write it down

    When you have a worry or your mind is racing with tomorrow’s to-do list then it can be good to write it all down. Putting these worries out there is a good way to clear your mind before bed.

  2. Put the pet to bed

    When a pet shares your bed your sleep can suffer.  The Mayo Clinic Sleep Disorders Center found that 53% of pet owners report sleep disturbance from a pet every night.

  3. Get up

    I know it sounds like it won’t help, but if you’ve been tossing and turning for a while it might help to get up and not associate your bed with sleeplessness.

  4. Environmental distractions

    We can’t help environmental distractions. Whether your neighbours have just brought home a newborn or there’s an overly sensitive car alarm down the street, there’s only so much you can do to stop these environmental factors interfering with your sleep. Run a fan to create white noise, wear earplugs or use an eye mask to block or a blackout blind to keep out the glare of street lights.

  5. Forget the clock

    Repeated clock-checking will only make you anxious and exasperated.  Turn your alarm clock to face the wall.

  6. Don’t lose sleep over lost sleep

    Losing sleep over losing sleep is something we have all encountered. Don’t put unnecessary pressure on yourself. It’s okay to be tired tomorrow.

  7. Do something non-stimulating.

    Do something relaxing. Read a book, do a crossword puzzle or Sudoku.  As long as it’s soothing you’re on the right track. Don’t check your work email, pay bills, or do anything that will make you anxious before bed.

  8. Say no to screens

    Your laptop, TV, tablet and smartphone all emit blue light that suppresses melatonin, the hormone that influences circadian rhythms and facilitates sleep. Avoid using these devices before bedtime or check to see if your device has a nighttime mode. 2.

 

Natural Remedies for Insomnia

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What Causes Insomnia?

Insomnia is a common sleep condition that can make it hard to fall asleep, stay asleep and can disrupt your sleeping pattern. Many people will experience this condition at some point in their life, but what are the causes of insomnia?What are the causes of...

What Causes Insomnia?

What Causes Insomnia?

Insomnia is a common sleep condition that can make it hard to fall asleep, stay asleep and can disrupt your sleeping pattern. Many people will experience this condition at some point in their life, but what are the causes of insomnia?

What are the causes of insomnia?

Insomnia is often associated with other health conditions, but there are some main causes that might have caused your insomnia. If it is as a result of an underlying problem it’s important to get in touch with your doctor, as if you treat this issue the insomnia will also be lessened.

Common causes of insomnia:

  • Stress

    We all experience stress in our daily life but constant worries or fears about work, school, health, finances or family can keep your mind active at night, making it difficult to sleep. Stressful life events or trauma also may lead to insomnia.

  • Travel or work schedule

    Disrupting your body’s circadian rhythms can lead to insomnia. Your circadian rhythms act as an internal clock, guiding such things as your sleep-wake cycle, metabolism and body temperature. Shift workers who frequently work late or change shifts and those who suffer jet lag from travelling across multiple time zones would be prone to insomnia for this reason.

  • Poor sleep habits

    If you have an irregular bedtime schedule, nap during the day or take part in stimulating activities before bed you are practising poor sleep habits. If you have created an uncomfortable sleep environment, and have been using your bed for work, eating or watching TV and interacting with your smartphone this can interfere with your sleep.

  • Mental health disorders.

    If you suffer from anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder your sleep may be disrupted. Awakening too early and finding it hard to awaken can be a sign of depression. Mental health conditions can affect your sleep in a number of ways, each is individual to the sufferer.

  • Medications.

    Some prescription drugs can interfere with sleep, such as antidepressants and medications for asthma or blood pressure. Something you may not know is that many allergy and cold medications and weight-loss products can contain caffeine and other stimulants that interrupt your sleep.

  • Medical conditions.

    If you suffer from chronic pain, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, asthma, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), overactive thyroid, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease you are more susceptible to developing insomnia.

  • Sleep-related disorders.

    If you suffer from another sleep disorder such as sleep apnoea, this can disturb your sleep. Restless leg syndrome causes unpleasant sensations in your legs and an almost irresistible desire to move them, which may prevent you from falling asleep.

  • Caffeine, nicotine and alcohol.

    Coffee, tea and soft drinks contain caffeine and are stimulants. If you drink them in the evening or late afternoon, they can interfere with your sleep. Tobacco contains nicotine which is also a stimulant and can keep you up. While you may think that alcohol can help you fall asleep it prevents you from entering deeper stages of sleep which can cause you to wake up during the night and rise the next morning feeling less refreshed and rejuvenated.

Insomnia and ageing

As we age we find that we are more susceptible to experience insomnia.

This is for a variety of reasons such as:

  • Changes in sleep patterns.

    When we age our internal clock often advances, so you get tired earlier in the evening and wake up earlier in the morning.

  • Changes in activity.

    Being less active can interfere with your sleep. The less active you are, the more likely you’ll be tempted to take a nap during the day which can affect your sleep at night.

  • Changes in health.

    As you get older you might experience health conditions associated with ageing such as prostate and bladder problems that can increase urine frequency at night. You might also be suffering from chronic pain from conditions such as arthritis. Sleep apnea and restless legs syndrome also can become more common with age.

  • More medications.

    Older people tend to use more prescription drugs which increases the chance of insomnia associated with medications.

Complications

Sleep is an important part of any healthy lifestyle. Whatever your reason for developing insomnia it can affect you both mentally and physically. People with insomnia report a lower quality of life compared with people who are sleeping well.

Complications of insomnia may include:

  • Lower performance at work or school
  • Slowed reaction time while driving
  • Mental health conditions, such as depression or an anxiety disorder
  • Increased risk of long-term diseases or conditions, such as high blood pressure or heart disease. 1

Natural Remedies for Insomnia

Natural remedies for insomnia can help restore your sleep schedule without the intervention of medication. There are many natural alternatives that can help aid sleep without the nasty side effects of sleeping pills.  Please note that these natural remedies cannot...

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Meditation to Help You Sleep

Sleep is an important part of a healthy lifestyle and when we lose out on sleep it can have lasting effects on our physical and mental health. When you are finding it hard to sleep due to outside influences such as stress, illness or chronic pain you can use...
What Is Insomnia?

What Is Insomnia?

Have you ever had long periods where you find it difficult to get to sleep? Are you often up late at night counting down the hours until you have to get up? You may be wondering if you have insomnia, but just what is insomnia and how do you overcome this common sleep disorder?

What is it?

Insomnia is a common sleep condition that causes the sufferer to experience difficulty in falling asleep or even staying asleep. People with insomnia tend to have difficulty falling asleep (onset), staying asleep (maintenance), and/or they wake up too early in the morning. Sufferers can experience sleeplessness even when there are ideal conditions for falling asleep and when they are not disturbed1.

What are the symptoms?

  • Feeling as if sleep was unrefreshing.
  • Experiencing excessive daytime sleepiness.
  • General lack of energy.
  • Difficulty concentrating.
  • Mood and behaviour disturbances such as irritability, aggression, and impulsive behaviours.
  • Difficulty concentrating.
  • Forgetfulness.
  • Decreased performance at work or school.
  • Troubles in personal and professional relationships.
  • Decreased quality of life.
  • Depression2.

How long will it last?

Insomnia is characterized based on the length of time the sufferer experiences sleeplessness.

 Acute insomnia

This often happens because of life circumstances such as bad news, external stressors, anxiety or depression. Many people may have experienced this type of sleep disruption and will find that it tends to resolve without any treatment required.

Chronic insomnia

This is categorised by disrupted sleep that happens at least three nights a week and lasts for at least three months. There are many causes for experiencing chronic insomnia. Changes in the environment, unhealthy sleep habits, shift work, other health conditions, and certain medications can all affect our sleep patterns. If you suffer from chronic insomnia you should get in touch with your doctor who can help you restore a healthy sleep pattern3.

What should I do if I think I have insomnia?

If you think you are suffering from insomnia it is important to go to your doctor. You and your doctor will need to talk about things that could impact on your sleep and your sleep history, to therefore determine the best way to help you 4.

Stuff you should know

  • Insomnia is one of the most common sleep disorders with approximately half of adults report having symptoms of insomnia at one point in their lives.
  • 10% of people have experienced chronic insomnia.
  • It is more likely to occur in women than in men.
  • It is more likely to affect elderly adults.
  • People who are naturally more awake and alert may be more likely to suffer.
  • If you regularly use stimulants and alcohol you may experience it more often.
  • People with poor sleep hygiene practices are more likely to experience the condition.

Natural Remedies for Insomnia

Natural remedies for insomnia can help restore your sleep schedule without the intervention of medication. There are many natural alternatives that can help aid sleep without the nasty side effects of sleeping pills.  Please note that these natural remedies cannot...

How Do You Practice Good Sleep Hygiene?

Have you ever heard of the term sleep hygiene? It's often used to refer to your nighttime habits and whether you practice good or bad sleep hygiene can have an effect on your sleep pattern. If you want to get a better night’s sleep, the answer often begins with...

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When you suffer from insomnia it can affect every aspect of your life. It can be hard to imagine how you will overcome this condition and finally get some sleep but be reassured to know that insomnia can be overcome,  but how can you get rid of...

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What Causes Asthma at Night?

What Causes Asthma at Night?

It is common for people with asthma to find coughing, wheezing and breathlessness can wake them up at night. But what causes asthma to flare up at night?

Why asthma can wake you up at night

If you haven’t got your asthma under control, you’re more likely to get symptoms at night. But what causes these symptoms?

  1. When you lie flat on your back gravity makes it harder to breathe. This position can also trigger a cough, as any mucus in your chest may start to gather in the back of your throat.
  2. Changes in hormones at night mean that natural anti-inflammatory chemicals in your body are switched off. This can cause the tissues in your lungs to swell, which narrows the airways, making it harder to breathe. Taking your anti-inflammatory preventer inhaler every day will build up protection in your lungs so they become less inflamed at night.
  3. Some common asthma triggers such as dust mites can be found in your mattress, pillows and bedclothes. Mould can also be in your bedroom if it is damp. This can affect your breathing at night. If you like sleeping with your window open, you should also be aware that on high pollen or pollution days, these particles may enter the room.

What to do when asthma stops you sleeping

  1. Sit up straight and take your blue reliever inhaler, as prescribed.
  2. Prop yourself up with extra pillows as it allows your lungs to open up more fully when you breathe.
  3. If your asthma is made worse when the air in a room is too hot or too cold. Try to adjust the temperature to make sure you’re comfortable.
  4. A glass of water or a cup of herbal tea can help ease a dry throat.

How to stop asthma waking you at night in the long-term

You shouldn’t have to accept your night-time symptoms as normal. If your asthma is waking you up during the night it is a sign that your asthma isn’t well controlled. If the situation doesn’t change within 48 hours, or if you’re already taking your preventer inhaler as prescribed, talk to your GP or asthma nurse to see if they can adjust your medicines1.

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Signs you have Asthma

Signs you have Asthma

Asthma symptoms can vary from person to person but what are the signs you have asthma? You may not experience asthma attacks often, or maybe your symptoms flare up at certain times or you may have symptoms all the time.

Asthma signs and symptoms include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest tightness or pain
  • Trouble sleeping caused by shortness of breath, coughing or wheezing
  • A whistling or wheezing sound when exhaling
  • Coughing or wheezing attacks that are worsened by a cold or the flu

Signs that your asthma is probably worsening include:

  • Asthma signs and symptoms that are more frequent
  • Increasing difficulty breathing
  • The need to use a quick-relief inhaler more often

For some people, asthma signs and symptoms flare up in certain situations:

  • Exercise-induced asthma, which may be worse when the air is cold and dry
  • Occupational asthma, triggered by workplace irritants such as chemical fumes, gases or dust
  • Allergy-induced asthma, triggered by airborne substances, such as pollen, mould spores or pet allergy caused by pets dander 1.

When is it time to talk to my doctor?

  • Do you think you have asthma? If you have frequent coughing or wheezing or any other signs or symptoms we have covered make an appointment to see your doctor.
  • To monitor your asthma. If you know you have asthma, work with your doctor to keep it under control. Long-term control can help prevent a life-threatening asthma attack in the future.
  • If your asthma symptoms get worse. Contact your doctor right away if your symptoms have started to get worse and your normal medication isn’t helping you. Do not under any circumstances try to solve the problem by taking more medication without consulting your doctor. This can cause side effects and may make your asthma worse.
  • To review your treatment. Asthma can change over time, it’s important to touch base with your doctor to discuss your progress and current treatment options.

What Causes Asthma at Night?

It is common for people with asthma to find coughing, wheezing and breathlessness can wake them up at night. But what causes asthma to flare up at night? Why asthma can wake you up at night If you haven't got your asthma under control, you’re more likely...

Signs you have Asthma

Asthma symptoms can vary from person to person but what are the signs you have asthma? You may not experience asthma attacks often, or maybe your symptoms flare up at certain times or you may have symptoms all the time. Asthma signs and...

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There are lots of treatments available to help you with your asthma. How asthma is treated can vary based on age and lifestyle factors. Different treatment pathways are recommended for adults (aged 17 and over), for children aged 5-16, and for...

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What Causes Asthma? It isn’t clear why some people develop asthma and others don’t. There are a variety of environmental and genetic (inherited) factors that play a role in you developing the condition. Asthma triggers Some common asthma triggers are; Exposure to...