Tips For Better Sleep When Suffering With Anxiety
Often I have clients come for treatments to help ease anxiety and stress and they find it helpful whether it’s aromatherapy, reflexology or Indian head massage.
But one thing that is common among a lot of people today who suffers from anxiety is insomnia or broken sleep. This can add more stress to their daily lives leading to poor work/college performance and leading to many health problems such as high blood pressure, heart failure, diabetes, injuries (due to poor attention span), quicker ageing due to slowed collagen production, loss of memory and many more. It can also be vicious circle where you become more anxious due to lack of sleep and therefore loose more sleep due to higher anxiety levels so it can be hard to get both in sync. While different types of insomnia have different causes, most people can find relief through natural remedies, regardless of the source of their insomnia.
Here are some tips I generally give to someone who is finding it hard to drop off and those who can drop off to sleep but wake up during the night.
- Avoid stimulants too late in the day – Depending on how early you like to go to sleep it is not recommended to have any stimulants like tea or coffee after 3pm. Caffeine is a popular stimulant that most people drink so if you have any sleep problems avoid drinking it. A lot of people don’t realise that some herbal teas too contain caffeine so please read the box before having a herbal tea before bed. Chamomile tea and Valerian are the best to feel calm and relax you before bed.
- Exercise Daily- any form of exercise that gets your heart rate can help release mood enhancing endorphins, lowering anxiety and stress. This does not mean you have to join a gym a simple 40 minute walk or hour yoga class is also going to help.
- Avoid using your phone or laptop or any bright screens directly before you go to bed – Looking at bright screens can lower levels of Melatonin (A hormone that controls our sleep cycles) It is recommended to turn off electronic devices an hour before bedtime.
- Use the hour before bedtime to practice a relaxing ritual – Each night before you go to bed do something that you find relaxing for an hour. Maybe that’s having an Epsom salt bath with Lavender oil added to it or reading a book in a quiet space. Something that really helps you to slow down.
- Make sure your room is a sleep friendly environment – Avoid having a TV in the room, ensure all lights are off. Some people need black out blinds/curtains due to lighting on the street and this can significantly help.
- Use Lavender on your pillow- Lavender essential oil is a natural relaxant and can ease stress and really help calm the mind. It is commonly used for sleep problems. A favourite of mine is also Ylang Ylang for mental clarity. I Mix both lavender and Ylang Ylang in a spray bottle with water and small amount of castor oil (as oil and water don’t mix) and spray this on my pillow or around the bedroom when I feel wired before bed.
- Keep a bedside Diary – If you can’t sleep because you are overthinking and then stressing over what you need to get done the next day or what you didn’t get done within the present day, writing your thoughts down is one of the best tools. If you cannot switch off what is going on in your head write everything down and as you do this visualise all the thoughts leaving your head and try to leave them on the page. If you are a busy person and thinking a lot about what you must do ‘tomorrow’ write a to do list and leave that on the page also. Therefore you know all will get done when you wake and there is no need to stress in that present moment.
- Get regular massage – Holistic massage, reflexology, Indian head massage, facials, and aromatherapy all contribute to relaxing the mind and body.Research has shown that therapeutic massage stimulates the nervous system to produce hormones that have tremendous benefit on the entire body while at the same time reduces unwanted or out of balance levels of chemicals that can have a detrimental effect on us. The Nervous System which is made up of the brain, spinal cord and the nerves and their minute nerve endings, works hand in hand with the Endocrine System which regulates all the functions of the entire body by releasing hormones, or chemicals that produce the desired physical response in our bodies in order to achieve homoeostasis.
- Talk to somebody – Friends, family, a colleague, your GP, a counsellor or your massage therapist can offer you advice or simply be there to listen.
As the saying goes “A problem shared is a problem halved”
If you would to talk or have a treatment to help destress,
or let me know if these helped you get a better night sleep you can do so by
Calling me(Katie) on 0851843002
or email: firstname.lastname@example.org