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15 Tips for Dealing with Insomnia

Claire McDonough ©

 

Insomnia can be quite common. Everyone struggles to fall asleep at times. It can be frustrating to just lie in bed wanting nothing other than to just fall asleep. The longer it takes, the more anxious you become about it.

 

Fortunately, we can all survive without a few nights of sleep, but it can be uncomfortable. It also makes everyday life more challenging until we can get caught back up on our sleep.

 

Take an active approach when dealing with insomnia:

 

  1. Get up on time. Sleeping in can create insomnia. Maybe you’re not awake long enough to be tired at night. Make yourself get up on time, even if you didn’t sleep well. Otherwise, you’re just creating a bigger challenge for yourself.
     

  2. Get up earlier. Maybe you’re getting up on time, but you’re simply sleeping too much. Some people need less sleep than others. Experiment with an earlier wake up time.
     

  3. Do something physical each day. If you’re mentally stimulated all day, but aren’t getting enough physical stimulation, you might have trouble sleeping at night.
     

  4. Do something mental each day. Perhaps the opposite is true. You might be physically active all day but engage in little mental activity. You need both to sleep soundly.
     

  5. Avoid eating within three hours of going to bed. Digesting food requires a lot of energy and can be quite stimulating. Allow your body a few hours to digest your food before attempting to sleep.
     

  6. Avoid caffeine. Caffeine can be a challenge for many people. The medical community often suggests a cut-off time of 2PM.
     

  7. Avoid drinking within two hours of bedtime. Avoid drinking any liquids within two hours of heading to bed. That should be enough time for your body to process the fluids, and you can empty your bladder before bed. Otherwise, you might be getting up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom.
     

  8. Only use your bedroom for sleeping. Avoid watching TV, reading, or working in your bedroom. The bedroom is for sleeping.
     

  9. Find the best temperature for you. If you’re too hot or too cold, you won’t sleep as well.
     

  10. Change your mattress. Maybe you need a new mattress. Most people have a definite preference regarding mattress firmness or softness. Is your mattress sagging? If possible, spend some money on a good mattress.
     

  11. Avoid alcohol. Alcohol is a depressant. It depresses your ability to sleep. Just because it makes you sleepy doesn’t mean it will help you sleep soundly.
     

  12. Avoid naps. If you’re sleeping during the day, you might have more trouble sleeping at night.
     

  13. Get up if you can’t sleep. Avoid lying in bed for too long if you find you can’t sleep. Get up and do something relaxing until you’re tired and think you can sleep.
     

  14. Turn off the TV and so something less stimulating before bed. If you watch TV immediately before heading to bed, consider switching to a different activity. Reading, listening to music, or meditating can be more conducive to a good night of sleep.
     

  15. Try listening to a guided meditation in bed. If your mind races while you lie in bed, try using a guided meditation recording. Many people report falling asleep quickly with the use of these products. Many are available for free online.

 

Try not to get too upset over an occasional bout of insomnia. You’ll be just fine. If you frequently have a hard time falling asleep, try the above tips or schedule an appointment to see your physician. You’ll be sleeping like a baby again soon enough.

 

Insomnia can be quite common. Everyone struggles to fall asleep at times. It can be frustrating to just lie in bed wanting nothing other than to just fall asleep. The longer it takes, the more anxious you become about it.

 

Fortunately, we can all survive without a few nights of sleep, but it can be uncomfortable. It also makes everyday life more challenging until we can get caught back up on our sleep.

 

Take an active approach when dealing with insomnia:

 

  1. Get up on time. Sleeping in can create insomnia. Maybe you’re not awake long enough to be tired at night. Make yourself get up on time, even if you didn’t sleep well. Otherwise, you’re just creating a bigger challenge for yourself.
     

  2. Get up earlier. Maybe you’re getting up on time, but you’re simply sleeping too much. Some people need less sleep than others. Experiment with an earlier wake up time.
     

  3. Do something physical each day. If you’re mentally stimulated all day, but aren’t getting enough physical stimulation, you might have trouble sleeping at night.
     

  4. Do something mental each day. Perhaps the opposite is true. You might be physically active all day but engage in little mental activity. You need both to sleep soundly.
     

  5. Avoid eating within three hours of going to bed. Digesting food requires a lot of energy and can be quite stimulating. Allow your body a few hours to digest your food before attempting to sleep.
     

  6. Avoid caffeine. Caffeine can be a challenge for many people. The medical community often suggests a cut-off time of 2PM.
     

  7. Avoid drinking within two hours of bedtime. Avoid drinking any liquids within two hours of heading to bed. That should be enough time for your body to process the fluids, and you can empty your bladder before bed. Otherwise, you might be getting up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom.
     

  8. Only use your bedroom for sleeping. Avoid watching TV, reading, or working in your bedroom. The bedroom is for sleeping.
     

  9. Find the best temperature for you. If you’re too hot or too cold, you won’t sleep as well.
     

  10. Change your mattress. Maybe you need a new mattress. Most people have a definite preference regarding mattress firmness or softness. Is your mattress sagging? If possible, spend some money on a good mattress.
     

  11. Avoid alcohol. Alcohol is a depressant. It depresses your ability to sleep. Just because it makes you sleepy doesn’t mean it will help you sleep soundly.
     

  12. Avoid naps. If you’re sleeping during the day, you might have more trouble sleeping at night.
     

  13. Get up if you can’t sleep. Avoid lying in bed for too long if you find you can’t sleep. Get up and do something relaxing until you’re tired and think you can sleep.
     

  14. Turn off the TV and so something less stimulating before bed. If you watch TV immediately before heading to bed, consider switching to a different activity. Reading, listening to music, or meditating can be more conducive to a good night of sleep.
     

  15. Try listening to a guided meditation in bed. If your mind races while you lie in bed, try using a guided meditation recording. Many people report falling asleep quickly with the use of these products. Many are available for free online.

 

Try not to get too upset over an occasional bout of insomnia. You’ll be just fine. If you frequently have a hard time falling asleep, try the above tips or schedule an appointment to see your physician. You’ll be sleeping like a baby again soon enough.

​© Claire McDonough Therapy 

Clitheroe Psychotherapy Centre   5-7 Waddington Road   Clitheroe   BB7 2HJ

                                                 

                                                 Telephone 07736067981