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Remedies for Insomnia

Submitted by New Jersey Snoring Solutions on Mon 05/26/2014 - 09:15

Anyone who has ever experienced insomnia knows how frustrating it can be — glancing at the clock every five minutes for hours on end, getting increasingly frustrated as the time ticks by. If you suffer from occasional insomnia, here are a few natural remedies that may help you sleep like a baby.

Herbs, Supplements and Certain Foods

Natural herbs and supplements as well as certain foods have been shown to help combat insomnia.

For instance, lavender has a calming effect, while valerian root has been used for its sedative properties since ancient times. (Note: You may have to take valerian root for several weeks before its sedative qualities kick in.)

Melatonin, a hormone that regulates the sleep cycle, causes drowsiness, slows the metabolism and lowers the body temperature, signaling to the body that it is time to sleep. Also, a lack of magnesium can prevent the brain from quieting down at night. Visit your local health and vitamin store to find supplements made with these ingredients.

The best foods for inducing sleep include a combination of carbohydrates and protein, so eating a small snack such as a half a banana with a tablespoon of peanut butter about 30 minutes before you want to go to sleep might help you get a good night’s rest. Of course, warm milk is still a good option as well. Milk is a great source of calcium, which stimulates the brain’s production of melatonin. In addition, the warm milk may bring back warm memories to help you fall asleep.

Get Out of Bed

If you have been trying to sleep but have not had any success within 20-30 minutes, it is time to take a break from trying. Get out of bed and read a book until you feel tired. Then, return to your bed to try to fall asleep again.

Exercise — Early and Frequently

It is clear that exercise promotes good health, including restful sleep habits. However, for exercise to be effective in helping you sleep well, it matters when you exercise and how consistently you engage in physical activity. In a study published in Sleep, researchers noted that the women who exercised at a moderate intensity for a minimum of 30 minutes each morning, every day of the week, had less difficulty sleeping than their counterparts who exercised later in the day and / or for less time.

Maintain Darkness and Tranquility

Make sure clothes are not cluttering your bed and that bills are not stacking up on your nightstand. Turn off the television and other electronics about 30 minutes before bedtime. If you must use a light in your bedroom, use a red light instead of a blue light, which can disrupt your body’s production of melatonin. Keep your bedroom cool, between 65 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, make sure you have a comfortable, supportive mattress with breathable sheets. If you can hear a lot of noise outside your bedroom, consider getting a white noise machine.

Your bedroom should be dark, cool, quiet and comfortable — a sanctuary.

If you have tried all these remedies for insomnia but still cannot get a good night’s rest, you may be suffering from an undiagnosed sleep disorder such as obstructive sleep apnea. To schedule a complimentary consultation with Dr. Stein to find out if OSA is the culprit behind your insomnia, contact New Jersey Sleep Apnea Solutions by calling (855) 949-7667 now.