Insomnia is more common than you think. Sleep disorders affect more than 70 million Americans each year, and insomnia symptoms are seen in 33-50% of the population. More specifically, chronic insomnia only affects 10-15% of people and is usually linked to bigger health issues.
It may affect your ability to fall asleep, stay asleep, or even the quality of the sleep you’re getting. This sleeping disorder can be caused by many things such as age, family history or genetics, your occupation if you’re continually changing routines, or other routine inhibitors. These are a few ways to treat insomnia.
1. Changing Habits
Of the many ways to deal with insomnia, the first should be to realign your lifestyle choices and cut out any bad habits. This can begin with something as simple as changing your diet and lifestyle to encourage a better sleeping schedule.
Things like alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine can all impact one’s ability to get a quality night’s sleep, especially if you’re doing those activities close to bed (more on that below). Besides knocking bad habits, it’s important to also plan your day correctly, even avoiding other habits close to bed like exercise.
Movement is important, but doing it too close to bed can mean adrenaline, cortisol, and other chemicals running through your body, telling you to stay up.
2. Creating a Sleep Environment
Similar to knocking bad habits, it’s crucial that you create a nurturing sleep environment in which your body will thrive. We all know that loud noises and bright rooms are not ideal for sleep time, but something as subtle as using your phone or having conversations before bed can be overstimulating and make you feel more awake.
The most ideal environment for you will depend on what relaxes you. However, experts recommend a cool, dark, and quiet room for sleeping. It’s best to keep your phone out of your room and avoid distractions at all costs.
3. Alternative Medicine
One option for treating insomnia is alternative medicine, such as cannabis. Pro top, if you aren’t a regular user, you probably don’t want to try this option off the bat. This is especially true during the work week or when you have early morning responsibilities the next day.
It’s also important to understand the difference between THC and CBD. THC is a psychoactive cannabinoid that causes a high feeling. This can help you to achieve a deeper state of sleep, with better REM and sleeping schedules.
Studies have shown that cannabis can be a great tool for patients with PTSD and can lead to better sleep. For best results, consume within an hour of bedtime so that the effects settle in as you reach a deeper level of sleep. Find more information at Marijuana Doctors.
4. Speak with Your Doctor
There are times when lifestyle adjustments and alternative methods are simply not enough to relieve insomnia. In these cases, it may be time to speak with a professional.
By outlining your issues and any other symptoms you’re experiencing, a doctor can help you rule out the diagnosis and find a tailored solution. As prescribed by your doctor, the fix could be as simple as a melatonin supplement or require things like Benzodiazepine.
5. Caring for Your Mental Health
Life can be overwhelming. Without the proper outlets to help you wade through your problems, they can keep you up at night. Talk therapy may be a good option to talk out issues, or you may try cognitive therapy, which can help you to feel less anxious and promote better sleep.
Pairing these methods of help with things like meditation and relaxation can all allow for the calmness you need to sleep. If you can calm your mind, you may find it easier to turn it off at the end of the day, allowing for a clear head and relaxed state.
Working with a mental health professional to treat your insomnia can mean finding and treating the root cause, something that other methods may blaze over.
Remember that everyone’s systems work differently. There is no universal solution to cure insomnia, but there are a few methods to cope. For the most thorough approach to diagnosis and treatment, it’s best to present any questions and solutions to your healthcare provider.