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- Self-Help for Sleep Issues & Sleeplessness
Tips for a Better Night's Sleep
Causes of Sleeplessness
Insomnia or sleep difficulties have become an increasing problem in society. There are a great number of causes for sleeplessness such as stress, stimulants and noise. Lack of sleep and proper rest can lead to poor performance, accidents and even major health problems such as heart attacks or strokes.
Strategies to Help Get to Sleep
There are several strategies that one may employ to assist in falling asleep and getting good quality sleep that allows you to awake feeling refreshed and alert.
The bedroom should have an atmosphere conducive toward sleeping. Don’t bring your computer to bed with you or watch television. You should be able to associate your bedroom as a place to sleep, not a room for activities that inspire wakefulness.
Assure that the bedroom is a comfortable temperature, noise is reduced and there is minimal to no illumination. If the environment is noisy, use earplugs. Earplugs are relatively inexpensive and can me found in the sporting goods section of most department stores. If there are street lights or if your window is positioned where passing automobile headlights shine in. use shades or blinds.
Position yourself so that you are comfortable. Assure that pillows are arranged so that your head is not at an awkward angle. A good mattress is also important.
Things to Avoid
Avoid eating a heavy meal close to bedtime. However, a light snack may be conducive towards getting to sleep. Dairy products such as milk and cheese have been shown to aid in inducing sleep. Therefore, milk and cookies or cheese and crackers would probably be good choices.
Refrain from participating in strenuous exercises or activities just prior to bedtime. Try to assure you are in a relaxed state.
Avoid stimulants such as caffeine and nicotine within four hours of bedtime. And limit items that are high in sugar.
Do not take naps during the day. If you find it necessary to do so, make it no later than eight hours after you first wake up in the morning.
Herbs and Other Sleep Aids
Soothing nocturnal sounds have been found to assist many people in achieving a restful sleep. These can be found in the form of fountains, electronic devices which simulate these sounds or CDs.
Reading can often be conducive towards sleeping depending on the material, Avoid reading material that creates excitement or suspense. Something you’ve already read is often a good choice.
Certain herbs are known to be helpful in relaxing such as chamomile and lavender. Both teas and candles are available that contain these.