Natural Insomnia Treatments to Help You Get Better Sleep

I’m sure you’d agree that if you have the option of using the natural root for something, you should. The more natural things you can incorporate into your life, the better your overall health and wellness will be.
Insomnia is a sleep disorder that affects 60 million individuals worldwide. [1]and most likely yourself, which is why you’ve come to read this post.

You’re probably looking for natural insomnia cures as well, and we’re here to assist!

TABLE OF CONTENTS

  1. What Exactly Insomnia Is
  2. Why Is Sleep so Important?
    • The Problem With Cortisol
  3. 13 Natural Remedies for Insomnia
  4. The Bottom Line

1. What Exactly Insomnia Is

Insomnia is the inability to get asleep and stay asleep. But there’s more to it than that. Insomnia is being recognized by researchers as an issue caused by your brain’s inability to cease being awake. [2]
There are a number of other things that could be contributing to your difficulty sleeping, including:

  • Psychiatric and medical conditions
  • Specific substances
  • Biological factors
  • Food (alcohol, caffeine, nicotine, heavy meals late at night etc)
  • Depression and anxiety

2. Why Is Sleep so Important?

It all comes to an end when you go to sleep. This is the time when your body heals and regenerates. It’s also the time when your mind records everything that has happened throughout the day, forming memories.

Even when you’re sleeping, your body kicks into high gear, launching a slew of vital functions that keep you alive and well. When you don’t get enough sleep, however, you have a serious problem.

When you don’t get enough sleep, your stress hormones, particularly cortisol, rise. Stress hormones are extremely significant because they play a role in your fight-or-flight response. That was necessary for our forefathers to outrun a saber tooth tiger.

For us today, it helps us jump out of the way of a speeding car or plowing through the crowds at a Black Friday sale…

The Problem With Cortisol

So while a small amount of stress hormone is necessary, when something like cortisol is consistently increased over time, you’re in trouble.

Cortisol is elevated when you don’t get enough sleep because your body assumes you’re experiencing some form of trauma; otherwise, why wouldn’t you be sleeping?

Your body has no idea if you’re in the middle of a famine, a natural disaster, or if you’ve been up all night watching a House Hunters marathon. All it knows is that there must be something preventing you from sleeping, so it releases all of this cortisol.

This heightened stress hormone, which is higher in insomniacs, can lead to a variety of severe issues over time, including:[3]

  • Headaches and dizziness
  • Anxiety
  • Panic disorders
  • Heart disease
  • Hypertension
  • Diabetes
  • IBS
  • Weight gain & obesity
  • Immune system dysfunction

9 Natural Remedies for Insomnia

Trust me, this is just scratching the surface. But hopefully, you can see why you don’t want to deprive yourself of sleep. So now you’re understanding this, how do you deal with that dreaded insomnia? Let’s look at a few ways:

1. Start Going to Bed Earlier

Although it appears to be very straightforward and straightforward, you should make it a point to go to bed at least an hour earlier than usual.

You may believe that because of your insomnia, you should just stay up late, but you need to give your body a fighting chance, which includes starting to go to bed sooner.

2. Create a Wind down Routine and Stick with It

According to sleep specialists, this is the most crucial factor in assisting your body in falling asleep. Your body wants structure and pattern, and the fundamental benefit of a nighttime routine is that it signals to your body that sleep is approaching. 
Soak in a hot bath, then read or write in a diary while listening to soothing music. The most important thing is to stick to your schedule and start it at the same time every night. 

3. Cut out the Electronics Later in the Evening

This could be the source of many people’s sleep issues, including yours. Your electronics, such as your phone, tablet, and television, emit a blue light that is extremely distracting to the brain.

Blue light disrupts your circadian cycle and stops your brain from producing melatonin, an important sleep hormone. 
According to your brain, using devices and bright lights late at night is the same as stepping outside at noon on a bright sunny day. Start reducing or eliminating screen time 1 to 2 hours before you want to go to bed. 

4. Exercise

This is one of the best insomnia remedies, plus it’s completely free, which is the best bargain there is!

People who exercise on a daily basis sleep better. It also doesn’t have to belong; simply 30 minutes three to four times a week can help with insomnia and sleep. 
Exercising first thing in the morning seemed to benefit as well. When you exercise first thing in the morning, it helps to naturally engage your circadian rhythm, which means your body will naturally wind down later in the day, allowing you to sleep better. 

5. Get Sunlight Earlier in the Day

This has the same effect as exercising first thing in the morning. The sun makes you wake up by forcing your body to recognize the time of day.

It releases wake-up hormones and helps your biological clock to fully engage, resulting in better melatonin release later in the night when you require it. 
Basically, the sun signals to your body when it’s time to wake up and when it’s time to sleep.

6. Keep Your Room as Dark as Possible

These last few suggestions are all linked together. Remember how I said your house will come alive late at night with all the electronic light? To counteract this, keep the room as dark as possible. 
You should have turned off all screens an hour or so before going to bed, and now you want your room to be as dark as possible.

Because most individuals don’t go to bed until it’s dark outside, keeping your room dark signals to your body that the day is over. Darkness also aids in the secretion of melatonin, which is impossible to achieve if your eyes are constantly illuminated. 

7. Watch out for the Caffeine

I’m sure you’re aware of the effects of coffee, but you may not be aware that it may stay in the body for much longer than you think. Caffeine’s effects are visible within 10 to 20 minutes and can continue up to 3 hours.

Caffeine has a ‘half-life,’ which means it can last longer in your bloodstream. Even 6 or more hours later, there may still be an effect. So, if you have a coffee at 4-5 p.m., it’s possible that you won’t be able to fall asleep until 11 p.m. that night.

You may need to experiment with when you stop drinking caffeine, but you should avoid it after 2-3 p.m.

8. Drink herbal tea

Chamomile Tea

While we’re on the subject of beverages, here are a few that can help you sleep better. For a long time, chamomile tea has been used to help people relax. It serves as a moderate sedative and can help calm nerves and reduce anxiety.

Valerian Root

Valerian, like chamomile, has been used for a long time. It has been shown to assist people in falling asleep faster and staying asleep longer.

Even if it’s natural, it’s something to talk to your doctor about because it might not be the ideal thing to utilize in the long run.

St. Johns Wort

You’ve undoubtedly seen this as well, as it’s available at most health food stores and even supermarkets.

Even though it sounds like a wonderful band name, St. Johns’s wort is a flowering plant that can aid with melancholy, anxiety, and sleeplessness — three things that are frequently linked. 
You can buy it in capsule form or fresh to make tea with.

Passion Flower

Another natural sedative that’s technically a tropical flower. You can steep a teaspoon of it in boiling water for ten minutes to help with sleep.

California Poppy

You may not be familiar with this name, but it is not the name of an exotic dancer.

The brilliant orange leaves of the California poppy can be soaked in hot water for about ten minutes to help battle anxiety while also relaxing you.

9. Try a Warm Shower

It’s all about sending signals to your body that it’s time to sleep.
A warm shower helps to naturally slow down and calm your nervous system, making you asleep.

Do you know how a hot shower in the morning may make you sleepy when you really need to wake up? You may want to skip it and start showering before bed instead. 

10. Keep Your Room Cool

When you sleep, your body temperature drops, so keeping a chilly atmosphere will help you fall asleep and remain asleep faster.

You want your room to be between 60 and 72 degrees, so you might have to fiddle with the thermostat (which I’m still not allowed to touch) or leave the windows open.

When you lie down, your bedding should feel cold to the touch.

The Bottom Line

If you’re suffering from insomnia, realize that you are definitely not alone. It’s frustrating but can be managed. There are a lot of great natural remedies for insomnia to help get your body to sleep and stay asleep.

Reference:

  1. National Public Radio: Can’t Sleep? Neither Can 60 Million Other Americans

2. National Sleep Foundation: What Causes Insomnia?

3. Sleep Med Clin.: Chronic Insomnia and Stress System

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