Insomnia Solutions

 

sleeping tips

Forty-eight percent of us will experience a bout of insomnia this year, and women are more likely to be affected than men. Researchers are discovering that insomnia is a risk factor for other serious maladies, including heart disease and depression. It often appears as a side effect of a different problem – pain from a medical complaint or a stressful life-changing event, such as a breakup or the loss of a job. But it can linger after the primary difficulty has been resolved. As a result, experts say that if you find yourself suffering from acute insomnia – a week or two of very poor sleep quality – you need help.

“For a lot of people, insomnia takes on a life of its own,” says Wilfred Pigeon, Ph.D., a sleep specialist at the University of Rochester in New York. “The longer someone has insomnia, the more intractable it becomes.” Why? Because when you spend night after night lying awake, you start to anticipate not falli8ng asleep, and you develop habits and associations that prolong the problem.

Your best sleeping tips:

Sleeping tips: Sleeping pills are effective insomnia treatments and are widely used – doctors wrote 35 million prescriptions in 2004.

The data suggests, however, that these medications may be habit-forming, and at least some patients report that they stop working over time. Specialists say that pills are best used as a short-term solution for sudden, intense bouts of insomnia. If the problem persists, the best approach is to change your sleep habits.

Sleeping tips: Learning proper sleep techniques is a bit like going to boot camp – for weeks at a time, patients are denied bed except for short periods.

It’s like sleep starvation. Patients become so exhausted that they start sleeping soundly – initially for short periods and eventually for a full night. For best results this process should be supervised by a n expert at a sleep clinic, but you can try to provoke a sleep craving by going to bed later than you normally would, while always rising at the same time in the morning no matter how tired you are – and never napping. Gradually allow yourself to go to bed earlier, keeping your wake time the same.

Sleeping tips: Never try to sleep, and don’t spend extra time in bed. When you are not sleeping, get up and do a quiet activity until you feel drowsy, and then return to bed. Relaxation exercises or guided-imagery CDs can be useful sleep aids.


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