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Sleeping better

missy

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Jun 8, 2008
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I know this is mainly common sense but I know there are PSers who have difficulty sleeping (me included) and I thought it might be helpful so I am sharing it here.

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-25505/natural-remedies-for-better-sleep-a-nutritionist-explains.html?utm_content=daily&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=160710&utm_source=mbg


Getting enough sleep affects your health in ways you cannot imagine.

Lack of sleep increases inflammation and that, in turn, determines whether you are at risk for heart disease, diabetes, being overweight, high blood pressure, and poor digestive health, not to mention affecting your mood and hunger levels.

Here are some things you can do to enhance your ability to fall asleep:

1. Organize your day to coordinate with your waking and sleeping cycles.

Mornings are for waking up and greeting the day. Start your day with inspiration from meditation, yoga, or whatever reduces your stress.
Exercise early in the day, not at night. Exercise makes you alert and awake and decreases your melatonin production.
Be your most active throughout the day.
In the evening, allow time to slow down, unwind, and stimulate our sleep neurotransmitters and melatonin. About 30 to 60 minutes before sleep, turn off your "devices," turn the lights down, take a warm bath or shower, and maybe include some meditation.


2. Limit sleep disrupters.

Alcohol makes you sleepy at first but interrupts sleep patterns later in the night.

If you drink caffeine, find your threshold for the time you should stop drinking it. For me, caffeine after 2 p.m. affects my ability to fall asleep at night.

Heavy fatty meals take a long time to digest, so your body is busy with the digestive process and indigestion rather than relaxing and helping you get to sleep. Consider lighter dinner fare.

Computer and TV screens not only keep your mind active but also emit light that is not conducive to falling asleep.

3. Consume nutrients from foods that help calm the nervous system.

Getting nutrients from foods that help you get sleepy by calming the nervous system, helping muscles relax, and increasing some of the brain neurotransmitters that decrease stress:

Tryptophan: Spirulina, soybeans, cottage cheese, pumpkin seeds, bananas, turkey, almonds, brewer's yeast, and yogurt

Taurine: Eggs, meat, and seafood

Vitamin B6: Garbanzo beans (chickpeas), pistachios, sunflower seeds, bananas, oatmeal, and fatty fish

Magnesium: Leafy greens, oatmeal, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, brazil nuts, and soy

L-Theanine: Decaf black and green tea


4. Consider a supplement.

If some of these suggestions don't work, look into a sleep aid supplement that may contain some of these natural substances:


Melatonin: A hormone that maintains the body's circadian rhythm, a 24-hour clock that controls when we fall asleep and wake up.

5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan): After tryptophan is converted into 5-HTP, it's then changed into another chemical called serotonin that helps mood and helps you relax.

Taurine: An amino acid, helps to decrease anxiety and depression so aids in relaxation and sleep.

B vitamins: Especially B6.

Sedating and calming herbs: Such as valerian, passionflower, lemon balm, St. John's Wort, chamomile, and skullcap.

Figuring out what works to develop good sleep habits is well worth the effort. Try some of these suggestions and see what works for your situation.

Start with taking a look at how you go through each day, then include some sleep-inducing foods in your evening meal or snack. If you decide to take a natural sleep supplement, discuss your options with your physician or dietitian.

Most importantly, be gentle with yourself. It's tough to change long-ingrained lifestyle habits, and the more you put pressure on yourself, the more difficult it will be to relax with it—and get to sleep!

Sweet dreams. :snore:
 

Jambalaya

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I've always found it hard to fall asleep, so I'm interested in this. Thanks, Missy!
 

marcy

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Feb 27, 2007
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Thanks Missy. I know I could use more and better sleep. :wavey:
 

missy

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Thanks Jambalaya and Marcy. I know they are basic tips but it doesn't hurt to remind oneself because I know I tend to do some things that aren't good for sleep.

Another big help for me is to make the bedroom cool enough for comfortable sleep. And dark enough. My biggest problem is I have conditioned myself to have to fall asleep with the TV on and I know that is not good. I think I use the TV to distract my mind from thinking about any real life issues that could make me worry but my poor dh because it keeps him awake sometimes. Usually as soon as he shuts the TV off (after I drift off to sleep) I wake right up. LOL it is a conundrum. Usually I fall asleep to the Real Housewives show. That is enough to cause nightmares for anyone. :lol:

Another tip is for the bedroom to be painted a tranquil color. Nothing bright that might keep you awake. We have soft blue in both our MBRs.

I have read taking a warm bath (in my case shower) before bed helps cool your body off once you get out of it and helps the sleep process.

I know the sleep experts say get out of bed if you cannot fall asleep but this backfires for me and I find usually if I stay in bed long enough I will finally fall asleep. If I get out of bed I stay awake much longer.

Pillow comfort is key for me. I have to buy new pillows every 6 months to a year because they lose their soft cushiony feeling I need. I sleep on soft pillows at least 2 of them sometimes 3. I know everyone is different though so your sweet spot re pillow is probably different.

When I have trouble falling asleep and the TV is already shut (and I don't want to wake my dh by turning it back on) I daydream and visualize happy scenes and I try my best not to stress about not falling asleep. That is always counterproductive for me. Don't stress about it because that will likely keep you awake even longer.

And lastly I spray lavender in the bedroom as I find it relaxing and calming. I use the Lavanila Lavender spray.


If anyone has other helpful sleeping tips to share I would love to hear about it.
 

tyty333

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Dec 17, 2008
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2. Limit sleep disrupters. = Limit number of kids you have!
 

missy

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Haha I hear you tyty. That includes furbaby kiddos too. Nothing like having a cat's butt wake you up by sitting on your face. :lol:
 

danusia

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Missy, I use lavender as well, but lavender essential oil in a diffuser. I also add a couple drops of eucalyptus and peppermint essential oil. I use peppermint essential oil a lot when I get a headache and it eliminates it without having to taking any medication.
 

tyty333

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missy|1468405283|4055046 said:
Haha I hear you tyty. That includes furbaby kiddos too. Nothing like having a cat's butt wake you up by sitting on your face. :lol:

Yep, I get that too...between cats and kids I never get a good nights sleep anymore!
 

telephone89

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Aug 29, 2014
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Just a few thoughts of the top of my head:

The article says not to drink alcohol, but later suggest brewers yeast? Is that not beer, or is that something different?

Taurine is suggested as a calming/relaxing vitamin, but this is a common additive in energy drinks (red bull, monster, etc). Very odd.
 

tsavvy

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Mar 12, 2008
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missy|1468321139|4054662 said:
Another tip is for the bedroom to be painted a tranquil color. Nothing bright that might keep you awake. We have soft blue in both our MBRs.
...

Pillow comfort is key for me. I have to buy new pillows every 6 months to a year because they lose their soft cushiony feeling I need. I sleep on soft pillows at least 2 of them sometimes 3. I know everyone is different though so your sweet spot re pillow is probably different.
...

If anyone has other helpful sleeping tips to share I would love to hear about it.
We have a pale blue in our master that is so peaceful - I don't particularly like blues, but it was already painted when we bought the house and I've grown to love it.

Pillow: Go to a nice mattress store and purchase a high quality latex pillow - there should be different thicknesses (low, high) and densities (plush, medium, firm, etc.). You can also buy online, but it is nice to see which height/softness is best for you. I used to go through pillows regularly, then we bought a new mattress and some latex foam pillows were added on. Well, we've since gone through a couple more mattresses, but oh my goodness, the latex pillows are unbelievable. They last for years, don't lose their loft, and are unbelievably soft.

Two other things that help me sleep well are earplugs and writing down my thoughts on a notepad when I'm having a hard time sleeping.
 

stracci2000

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I don't have a TV in the bedroom. Studies have shown that TV watching is a stimulant, and contributes to sleeplessness.
 

Puppmom

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Jun 25, 2007
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Thanks, Missy! I could use the help. I find that the less sleep I get the harder it is to sleep. So, on nights when I stay up too late, it's really hard for me to fall asleep even though I'm really tired. I used to be one of those people who fell asleep within minutes of laying my head down and over the last few years that's changed - age, stress, children - I guess they've all contributed. ::)
 

Amber St. Clare

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Dec 15, 2009
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I recently gave up a longtime dependence on sleeping pills with the help of some great info I got from this website.

Mild exercise during the day {regular}, even if it means just a brisk walk around the neighborhood.

Relaxing herbal teas--someone here mentioned the Republic of Teas Get Some ZZZZZZs or Sleepy Time by Celestial Seasons. I drink two cups before I go upstairs.

Melatonin--3mgs at night with the tea.

I think establishing ritual helped. I start my tea by 9pm and take the Melatonin around 10 and usually drift off around 11:30.

It also helps that I kicked my snoring husband out into his own room! :lol:
 
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