Article at a Glance:
- Understanding Insomnia and Chronic Insomnia
- Understanding Sleep Apnea
- Understanding Restless Leg Syndrome
- Understanding Jet Lag
- Understanding Differing Work Schedules
- Understanding Anxiety
Can't Sleep - Admit it, all of us have had some trouble falling asleep at some point. Sleepless nights can be a big problem for just about anyone. When you wake up the morning after a restless night of tossing and turning, you won’t feel good, and worse, you won’t look good! The worst! What can you do to help have a great night’s sleep? Well, we all have different reasons for being wide awake in the middle of the night, but hopefully, the tips below will help you fall asleep faster and give you a good night’s rest.
Insomnia is probably the most common and widespread of all sleep disorders. If you are suffering from problems falling asleep before a big presentation or after hearing alarming news, you may be experiencing acute insomnia. But don’t worry--and add even more sleepless nights to your plate-- as this type of insomnia usually only occurs for a short period of time: between a few nights to a week. As your stress level evens out or returns to normal, you’ll naturally overcome this type of insomnia--so don’t go running for the melatonin quite yet! Your best way to help manage acute insomnia is to let go of your stress; easier said than done, right?
Chronic insomnia, on the other hand, is one of the more difficult types of sleep problems to manage. This is because the causes of chronic insomnia can vary widely and are often more serious or permanent. For example, those with a different or opposite work schedules, such as nurses and doctors, may experience chronic insomnia. Noticeable changes in environment may also cause you to feel some effects. Chronic insomnia may also be the result of a medical condition, psychological condition (such as depression or anxiety) or even certain medicines. If you suffer from this type of insomnia, then it may be better to see a sleep specialist who can recommend an appropriate treatment plan.
How To Help Correct Insomnia
However, if your insomnia is caused by too much Netflix or other forms of entertainment late at night, that’s a different story. Here’s the good news: you have total control over that yourself, so you should be able to manage it pretty easily. Try to limit your screen time at the end of the day and shut off your electronics about an hour before you go to bed. That’ll reduce the amount of blue light exposure and help you naturally ease into quality, restful sleep.
sleep apneaIf you or a loved one has noticed that your breathing changes while you’re sleeping, then you might be suffering from sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is a common problem that results in poor quality sleep. It occurs when your throat muscles relax too much and begin to block airflow into your lungs. Another form of sleep apnea is central sleep apnea, in which your breathing repeatedly stops and starts throughout the course of the night. This form is caused by the brain not sending the appropriate messaging to your lungs to breathe.
How To Help Correct Sleep Apnea
Apart from going to a doctor, there are things that you might want to do to give you a good night's sleep. You might want to try aiming for and then maintaining a healthy weight. You also might also want to try a different sleep position wherein you are more comfortable, perhaps making use of an air humidifier, or even doing yoga before bedtime.
Restless leg syndrome
Restless leg syndrome is when you have an uncontrollable urge to move your legs. People who suffer from this syndrome can find it hard to sit still in a plane or even just in a chair for longer stretches of time; however, there are also those who may find it hard to fall asleep as the overwhelming urge to move their legs often happens at night when they should be resting. Because of this, some of their insomnia may be brought upon by their legs.
How To Help Correct Restless leg syndrome
Those who experience severe cases of restless leg syndrome often not only get poor quality of sleep but they also sleep less, usually less than five hours per night. There are also those who suffer from milder cases and may not be completely disturbed during their sleep; however, they are also thought to have poor quality sleep
Jet lag is a common sleep disorder that most frequent-travelers experience. This is largely because they are adjusting to the new time zone of their destination in relation the time zone of their original location.
How To Help Correct Jet lag
If you experience this sleep disorder, you might want to consider melatonin to help you with this. Another tip is to arrive a few days early to your destination, especially if it’s for a business trip or a conference. This can allow more time to adjust to the time change once you’re there. Finally, staying hydrated and preparing for the new time zone while you are still in flight can help you manage the effects of jet lag. Make sure to drink a lot of water while you are in flight and adjust your watch to the time of your destination. The former can help promote overall health and wellness while the latter takes a more psychological approach, such as when you subconsciously look at your watch while on board the plane.
Sleep disturbances are also quite common. What if you suddenly heard a cat fighting on your roof or have suddenly woken from a dream? Wouldn’t you think that it is entirely reasonable if you did suddenly wake up?
How To Help Correct Sleep disturbances
If you have any problem falling back asleep, then try a different position in your bed. Practice a slow breathing technique, wherein you will slowly inhale, hold your breath for about 20 seconds, and then slowly exhale through your nose. If these do not work, then try doing something relaxing like reading a book or even reading a book backward. By backward, we mean from the last page, where you will begin with the last word and slowly make your way up to the top of the page. These techniques can help ease your mind, relax your body, and drift off into a natural, good quality sleep.
differing work schedule
A differing work schedule or even a shift in your regular schedule may alter your circadian rhythm and give you insomnia. Because of this, you might have a delayed sleep-wake phase or even an advanced sleep-wake phase. These two sleep disorders often cause people to completely alter their time for bed, usually by two hours. A more intense type of these two disorders is the irregular sleep-wake circadian rhythm. This is usually identified by the lack of a main sleep event at night, with quality rest occurring through a number of short naps taking place within a full 24-hour period and generally in line with the natural 24-hour day-night cycle. To contrast, another intense type of these two disorders is the Non-24-hour sleep-wake circadian rhythm, which is generally identified by a total lack of synchronization with the 24-hour day-night cycle.
How To Help Correct differing work schedule
If you believe you experience either of the above, seek guidance from a sleep specialist or your general practitioner. Generally speaking, having a fixed time to sleep--synchronized or not--can really help you in getting the right number of hours of sleep that you need.
If you suffer from anxiety, then this might also be the reason why you often stay awake in bed late at night. You don’t need a definite diagnosis for this, as stress is a common cause of anxiety and could be the reason why you may have restless nights. Worrying about what it is that you need to do or thinking about a solution to your current problem may not only give you more anxiety but may also be a cause of your insomnia. Try to clear your mind of any worries that may be stressing you out or giving you problems.
How To Help Correct anxiety
A lifestyle change or even just making sure that you have a specific and consistent time for bed can be helpful. This is the time of the night that you should be in bed no matter what. In time, this will send an automatic signal to your internal body clock that it’s time for sleep. Do not forget to dim the lights and do something relaxing before you go to bed. Also, try minimizing the volume of appliances around you, so that you may have a quieter environment. Before lying in your bed, try calming your mind and freeing yourself of all the problems that you had to face during the day, and those which you may face the next day. Make a mental checklist. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Remember that you are also building your sleep pattern, so during your first few nights, don’t expect to fall asleep right away. This is a discipline you should learn and cultivate over some time. We also suggest that you trim down your caffeine and alcohol intake. If you are used to having three or more cups of coffee, why not reduce it by a cup, or try switching to decaf. While it is true that alcohol is a depressant and may help you fall asleep, it can often leave you feeling restless after the effects wear off. Hopefully, these tips that we have given you above can help with your restless nights. Wouldn’t it be great if we could all fall asleep like a baby and call ourselves good sleepers? If none of these tips work, you may want to talk to a sleep doctor, visit the National Sleep Foundation or even take a sleep test. Before saying yes to any sleep medicine, such as a nervous fatigue formula or any therapy-cognitive behavioral therapy (which also can also help increase a person’s level of happiness), make sure to weigh out the pros and cons. This way, you will know if what the sleep specialist is offering you fits what you need and is the best solution for your sleep disorders.
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