Insomnia Tips for Better Sleep

Try These Insomnia Tips for Short-Term Sleep Issues

If you have experienced difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep for a number of consecutive nights, try following the insomnia tips below to help you get back on track to healthy, rejuvenating sleep. 

Insomnia can range from the occasional sleepless night to years spent tossing and turning - and sleep deprived. If you suffer from the latter - chronic or long-term insomnia - these remedies are a good place to start. Yet, you also need to see your doctor to determine the cause and identify treatment options before your health and quality of life are compromised.


Set a sleep schedule and stick to it.
Aim to go to bed and get up at the same time each day. Yes, even on weekends. This keeps your internal body clock on track and encourages naturally restorative sleep.

Create a calming bedtime routine.
A pre-sleep ritual, such as a relaxing bath followed by a glass of warm milk or cup of herbal tea, helps your body and brain prepare for sleep. Practicing relaxation techniques like meditation or breathing exercises can also be helpful.

Protect your sleep environment
Turn your bedroom into your own personal sleep sanctuary. Keep the temperature comfortable, the lights low, and make it a clutter-free zone' Use your bedroom for sleep (and lovemaking) only... no work, hobbies, TV, or heated arguments.

If you can't sleep, get up.
Instead of tossing and turning for hours, if you're still wide awake after 30 minutes of being in bed (or wake up and stay that way for 30 minutes or more), get up. Leave your bedroom and do something quiet and relaxing like reading a book (no thrillers) or listening to calming music. Continue until you feel sleepy. Then, go back to bed and try again.

Avoid the 'sleep-stealers'
An important part of any list of insomnia tips is information on what to avoid if you want to sleep at night. Certain foods, drinks, and activities can get in the way of a good night's sleep. Here are the things to avoid if you want sleep well.

  1. Don't drink caffeinated beverages. Coffee, coca cola, chocolate, many soft/carbonated drinks and non-herbal teas all contain caffeine. Avoid these in the hours leading up to bedtime.

  2. Don't eat a large or spicy meal in the evening. This is one of the insomnia tips that is often ignored. Try to eat your biggest meal of the day at lunchtime, and stick to foods that encourage the release of tryptophan or serotonin for dinner (these include dairy products, whole wheat products, certain nuts and carbohydrate-rich foods).

  3. Don't drink alcohol within 4 hours of going to bed. After the initial sedative/relaxing effect has worn off, alcohol will leave you restless and unable to achieve deep sleep. It's also a diuretic, which will cause you to make a few extra trips to the bathroom during the night. Alcohol can also make sleep problems such as snoring and sleep apnea worse.

  4. Don't watch the clock. If you lie in bed watching the minutes creep by and agonizing over how much sleep you're missing, you're only going to make the situation worse. Turn your clock so that you can't see the face and resist checking it if you do wake up.

  5. Don't smoke. The nicotine in cigarettes and cigars is a stimulant and will prevent you from relaxing enough to get a decent night's sleep. It can also increase your risk of nightmares and other sleep disturbances. Giving up smoking is the best answer (for a variety of health reasons). Yet, if you can't stop smoking, at least don't smoke in the hours leading up to bedtime.

  6. Don't take long daytime naps. If you're so tired that it's not safe to get behind the wheel of your car (or chop the veggies for dinner), a short 10-minute nap can be a lifesaver. But, don't sleep for much longer or you may make your insomnia worse and prevent sleep that night.

  7. Don't exercise close to bedtime. Regular exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. If you exercise before mid-afternoon, your sleep will reap the benefits. However, exercising should be limited to no later than 3 hours (5 to 6 is better) before your normal bedtime. Otherwise the endorphins and chemicals coursing through your body, plus the elevated brain activity, mayl keep you awake into the wee hours.

Take advantage of sleep inducing foods
Just as there are certain foods and drinks that you need to avoid, there is also a list of foods and drinks that can help you sleep better. Foods that contain the amino acid tryptophan are on this list, including calcium-rich foods and many high-carbohydrate choices.

When you're having difficulty sleeping, the more you know about what's causing your problems the better. After all, if you don't know why you're not sleeping it's going to be difficult to overcome the problem. You can take this quick Insomnia Quiz to take a closer look at your sleeping habits.

If you follow the insomnia tips on this page, you'll give your body a chance to help you enjoy healthy, natural sleep. The body and brain are always in a delicate balance with nature, trying to maintain our biological equilibrium in spite of hectic schedules and high-stress lifestyles.

By regulating your sleep schedule, providing a relaxing atmosphere, and avoiding artificial stimulants, you can make positive strides towards improving the quality and quantity of your sleep.

Related Information - Insomnia Tips

What Is Insomnia?
Facts About Insomnia
Causes Of Insomnia
Insomnia Statistics
Insomnia In Children
Sleep Comfort/Environment
Sleep Schedule
Sleep Habits & Routine
Natural Cures For Insomnia
Aromatherapy Benefits
Sleep Disorders

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