Dr. Mehmet Oz answered:Learning meditation and rhythmic breathing may help you let go of stress and prepare your body for sleep.
Learning meditation and rhythmic breathing may help you let go of stress and prepare your body for sleep. More
The following treatments can help you fall asleep:
- Herbal treatments: While more research is needed to determine the safety and effectiveness of these treatments, valerian root, a herb with mild sedative effects, is said to help with sleep onset and maintenance. Chamomile, passionflower, ginseng, and lemon balm, among others, have been promoted as effective sleep remedies. Always tell your doctor if you are using herbal supplements, since they can interact with some medications, and choose the brands and suppliers carefully.
- Melatonin: Melatonin, a hormone secreted by the pineal gland, helps regulate the sleep/waking cycle and other circadian rhythms. It may be helpful in reducing sleep disturbances caused by jet lag and may be used to treat insomnia in people who sleep and get up much later than others.
- Acupuncture: Often used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat insomnia and other sleep disorders, acupuncture involves inserting needles into specific points on the skin to influence body functions.
- Relaxation and Meditation: These techniques help to relax muscles and calm the mind, eliminating muscle tension and intrusive thoughts that interfere with sleep. Meditation, either alone or as part of a yoga workout, has been shown to increase melatonin blood levels, which helps regulate sleep.
- Sleep Bubbles: I tell my patients begin blowing bubbles at bedtime, because 1) it promotes deep, relaxing breathing (similar to yoga or meditation), 2) if combined with imagery (like blowing out negative thoughts) helps the brain to relax, 3) bubbles likely remind the person of happier times, which relax the brain. I also tell my patients to pretend they're breathing in the colors blue or green (which are thought to be relaxing) at bedtime as well.
- Happy Thoughts: I also tell my patients to think of five happy thoughts as part of their bedtime ritual. Going to bed thinking happy thoughts reduces stress, worry, and unhappiness, calming your body in preparation for sleep.
The following treatments can help you fall asleep: Herbal treatments: While more research is needed to determine the safety and effectiveness of these treatments, valerian root, a herb with mild sedative effects, is said to help with sleep... More
David Hoffmann answered:
Sleeplessness may be treated with a group of herbs that relax both the body and the mind. The herbs that can safely and effectively help aid sleep are grouped into their relative strengths. ‘Sleep’ herbs are usually classified by strength and vary between mild, moderate and strong.Mild Herbs to help sleep: Chamomile, Lemon balm, Catnip, and Linden.Moderate Herbs to help sleep: Motherwort, Skullcap, and St. Johns WortStrong Herbs to help sleep: California Poppy, Hops, Passionflower, Kava Kava, and Valerian
It is always best to start with a mild herb, as often this is all that is needed. If sleep is disturbed by muscle cramping (as in restless leg syndrome), the muscle relaxing herbs Kava Kava or Valerian are relevant. If digestive problems such as gas keep you awake, try Chamomile. If anxiety is involved, consider Motherwort, Skullcap or Kava Kava.
These herbs can be used as teas or tinctures.
In addition to taking these herbs in teas, tinctures or capsules, aromatherapy can be beneficial in easing sleep problems. “Sleep pillows” are a great way to use some of the same herbs listed above as well as Lavender and Orange Peel. A sleep pillow is usually a small cloth bag filled with herbs and sewn closed and placed by one’s pillow at night. Essential oil blends that are dropped into the bath, incorporated into massage, or steam inhalation are also a great way to use relaxing herbs.Sleeplessness may be treated with a group of herbs that relax both the body and the mind. The herbs that can safely and effectively help aid sleep are grouped into their relative strengths. ‘Sleep’ herbs are usually classified by... More
Burke Lennihan RN CCH answered:
In addition to herbal treatments, there are several homeopathic medicines to help you fall asleep.
Calms Forte is a combination of homeopathic medicines, one of the most popular products in my health food store years ago. It’s also good for daytime anxiety. It’s very mild, totally safe, and non-habit-forming. I would dissolve a couple of tablets in your mouth just before going to bed (if you tend to have problems with sleeping every night) and keep it by your bed. If you only have problems once in a while, take it when you’re actually having the sleep problem.
Specific homeopathic medicines can be even more effective if you find the one that matches you best. Here are just two examples among many:
Ignatia is called “the rehearsal remedy.” It works especially well when you’re upset and you’re lying awake thinking, “I wish I said this! I wish I did that! Next time I see him I’m going to . . .”
Coffea works especially well when you have insomnia from happy anticipation – like the night before your wedding, or just before going on a long-awaited vacation.
Start with a mild 6c or 12c potency and dissolve two pellets in your mouth before going to bed.
If that doesn’t work after a few tries, you can move up to the 30c (medium) potency.In addition to herbal treatments, there are several homeopathic medicines to help you fall asleep. Calms Forte is a combination of homeopathic medicines, one of the most popular products in my health food store years ago. It’s also good for... More