Insomnia definition, causes and consequence:
Some of the insomnia causes are stress, depression, pain, sleep apnea, drugs, or night shifts. Insomnia can affect you both physically and mentally, for example high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, weakened immunity, troubles with thinking and concentration, … and even worse like depression, paranoia, suicidal thoughts. It silently messes up every aspect of your life.
It feels almost impossible to get a goodnight’s sleep with your hectic work schedule or late night’s studying before tests of simply just with your habit of staying up late. However, if you think about it, you are the one who have all controls over the quality of your own sleep. The solution for insomnia can be found more in your daily routine than you think, instead of investing on fancy sleep therapy treatments, let’s just switch some of your daytime habits first, shall we?
Everyone’s schedule and routine is different, so try experimenting with these tips and find the one that work best for you, you can always adjust them to suit yourself.
How to cure insomnia and get a good night sleep:
Tip 1: Keep the rhythm
We tend to have the habit of napping whenever and however we want. Not to mention, who doesn’t love sleeping in on weekends, it’s like a little treat for a whole exhausting and stressful week with work and everything. Well, these habits can cost your body to be confused and doesn’t know which time to follow, which leads to insomnia.
To cure insomnia, you should decide a certain time to sleep and wake up every day. This helps telling your body that ok, this is the time we’re going to sleep and wake up, it sets a natural alarm and creates a rhythm for your body to follow. I suggest you select the time when you normally feel most tired, so that you don’t even have the energy to toss and turn trying to sleep, and when you wake up, you don’t have to feel all grumpy and sleepy. If you keep this rhythm steady, you should be able to wake up on your own naturally without an alarm clock to annoy you.
This may sound horrific but you should try to avoid sleeping in on weekends, as I mentioned above, if you sleeping in for too long on weekends it will stray away from the rhythm you have created, and the more you sleep, the worse jetlag-like you’ll feel. If you really need to make up for the late nights, try napping during the day instead, it will pay off your sleep debt without interfering with your rhythm. By the way, be smart about napping, it can make things worse if you extend your nap time for too long, keep it within 15-30 minutes in the early afternoon.
Tip 2: Mind your exposure to light
Sounds as basic as it is, but it truly affects the quality of your sleep. During the day, you want to expose yourself to the natural daylight, let the light come to your home or workspace, keep the curtains open, move your desk closer to the window. Or when you just wake up, have the coffee and breakfast outside or near the window, let the light be on your face will make you feel much more awake.
At night time, avoid any bright screens from 1 hour to 30 minutes before you sleep, if you have to, you can minimize the impact by using smaller screens or turn the brightness down. When it’s finally time to sleep, make sure your room is dark, and if you have to get up during the night, install a dim nightlight, that way it won’t get too bright and you can fall back to sleep easily. Follow this method, when you get used to it, you can confidently say “Don’t think about haunting me, insomnia! Hahaha”
Tip 3: Watch what you eat and drink, it may be friends with insomnia:
When we get home or go to a nice dinner after work, we just want to enjoy the meal and relax, put all the work behind, sometimes we don’t even care about what we eat and just jamming whatever makes us full to get it over with, but eating habits also play a role in your quality sleep and you have to look after it. Here are some things you should pay attention to when having meals during the day and especially in the hours before bedtime.
Having big meals at night when you are about to sleep is a big no-no (big yes-yes to insomnia, he loves it) it may agitate and make your stomach feel heavy, try to have dinner early in the evening.
Try to avoid are caffeine and nicotine, these two can cause you trouble sleeping for up to twelve hours! And go easy with alcohol before bed too, at first it may make you feel easier to FALL asleep, but when your buzz wears off, you’re going to wake up time and time again later in the night.
Cut all the sugar and carbs, it can make you wake up suddenly at night and disturb your deep, restorative stages of sleep.
Tip 4: Dont take exercising for granted!
People who work out regulary always have such a goodnight’s sleep and they have so much energy during the day instead of feeling tired or sleepy
The harder you work out, the more sleep benefits you’ll get. But even with just light exercise like 10 minutes of cardio or 20 minutes of walking every day can really boost your sleep quality.
Tip 5: Clear your mind
You can’t sleep at night with all the stress from work, school, family or just life itself. In fact, we all can’t. But you can learn to manage your work time effectively, handle your stress in a more productive way, maintain your calmness if possible, take as much of the positive energy as you can, find your way to relax and you’ll be able to sleep much better. You can control your action, don’t let insomnia have the chance to.
During the day, many of us overstress our brains by constantly interrupting tasks to check our phones, emails, or social media. Try to set certain times for each things, focus on one thing at a time. By the time you get to sleep at night, your brain don’t have to busy itself with finding new things to do and you’ll be able to unwind and calm your mind much easier so that insomnia don’t have the chance to rise and control you.
Tip 6: Create your own night time rituals or routine
This may be different with everybody, we’re so caught up with work and life and we are constantly stressed out that we forgot how to relax and take care of ourselves.
Before going to bed, we can treat ourselves with little things that make us feel more calm and cozy, loosen up all that tension so that when it’s time to sleep, it’ll be nice and easy. A tranquil and calm routine before bed sends a powerful signal to your brain that it’s time to wind down and let go of the stresses during the day.
Here are the things I would personally do to make myself comfortable and ready for bed.
- Do a 10-20 minutes cardio.
- Take a warm bath, sometimes I like put lavender oil in the water, the aroma really helps me feel calm and relax.
- Open my favorite soothing music list, I even listen to it while I’m taking a bath.
- Listen to my audio book.
- Have a cup of warm milk.
- Make some small preparations so that I don’t fuss around the next day.
- Dim the lights, light up some scented candles.
- Wind my brain down with some doodling, you can do this with any of your hobbies.
- Apply my favorite scent of hand cream.
A good night sleep plays a vital role in our life. One of which is to help us solidify and consolidate memories. More than that, our bodies need long periods of sleep so as to restore and rejuvenate, to grow muscle, repair tissue, and synthesize hormones. Therefore, don’t let insomnia destroy our body day by day.