Sleep is a vital and essential component of our health and well-being. Without sleep we struggle to properly function. There are many causes of insomnia and sleep disorders including stress, anxiety and depression. Almost anything that affects or disturbs our mind when we’re awake, can cause sleep issues at night.
Warning signs of a sleep disorder include long standing insomnia that’s lasted for several weeks or months, sleepwalking or other excessive movement, being unable to stay awake during the day because you feel so tired, mood swings, irritability or waking up feeling pain or panicked.
There are some basic steps you can take to give yourself the best possible chance of a restful night’s sleep.
Temperature – make sure the temperature in your bedroom is comfortable. A cooler room is usually best for sleep.
Relaxing bath/shower – enjoy a relaxing bath or shower an hour or two before bed.
Comfortable bed – make sure your bed is clean and comfortable.
Light – have the room as dark as possible and remove lights from electronic devices. Turn off TVs, phones and iPads etc. at least an hour before bed.
Sounds – a quiet room is best for sleep but some people find that relaxing sounds of nature or white noise can help them get to sleep. Irregular or disturbing sounds should be avoided.
Food and drink – try not to go to bed too hungry or too full. Eat a good, healthy meal a few hours before bed. Try not to drink too much before bed to avoid needing to get up during the night. Avoid caffeine and alcohol which causes restless sleep.
Exercise – fresh air and exercise is proven to help people sleep well.
Sanctuary – reserve your bedroom for sleep. Don’t work in bed and keep the space clean, tidy and uncluttered.
Routine – once you have a good bedtime routine stick to it as often as possible. Go to bed and get up roughly the same time each day.
Relax before bed – if you feel tense or stressed, relax before going to bed using breathing techniques, relaxation, yoga, meditation, or counting exercises to calm the mind.
Imagine – if you need to take your mind off something which is distracting you and keeping you awake, try simple imagination exercises. Build a house in your mind, imagine a natural scenescape, or repeat a simple story.
Simple self-hypnosis – Use techniques to create yourself a calm, safe space. Picture yourself in a warm, safe spot, descending a staircase or repeat a simple mantra as you drift off.
Further Help With Sleep
These simple treatments don’t work for everyone, especially when things have progressed to a more serious or complex state. Sleep issues have underlying causes that need to be addressed for complete, long-lasting relief.
Underlying emotions or fears which are unresolved can surface during the night when our brains are no longer occupied with day to day tasks. In order to get a good night’s sleep we need to feel, safe, relaxed and comfortable. Hypnotherapy can help you with this, working through any issues preventing you from getting to sleep and teaching you powerful relaxation and visualisation techniques to help you clear your mind.
You know that feeling of worrying about taking too long to get to sleep, then looking at the clock, and counting down how much sleep you’re missing out on? Sometimes the stress of taking too long to get to sleep only makes things worse. I can help you target the negative thought patterns and teach you how to manage the feelings and view them in a more positive perspective.
For more information on how I can help you get a better night’s sleep, please do get in touch.