Sleep Aid And Rest-ful Sleep Remedies
Huge percentage of population that is a large number of people who are suffering from problems like insomnia, waking up several times during night, tossing and turning through the night or worse, extremely poor quality of sleep. The only thing which provides them some relief from this pain is some sleeping pills from the best sleeping aids. Now what are best sleeping aids? Usually, the best treatment or sleeping aid is determined by knowing the right cause of sleeplessness problem. Before choosing any one among the sleeping aids for curing insomnia, it is advised to evaluate certain factors like ingredients, side effects, feed back and reviews for ensuring safety. Make sure that product won't induce any withdrawal syndrome on users. Best sleeping aid makes you well relaxed and helps in inducing sleep in natural way.
Deficiency of magnesium in body may induce many health problems like anxiety, irritability, constipation and pain. It causes person to wake up frequently during night. Wheat bran, dark green leafy vegetables, almonds and cashews are some of the food items rich in magnesium level concentration. Passion flower is a commonly suggested natural aid for insomnia problems. It relaxes nerve cells and helps in reducing restlessness, anxiety and nervousness. Presence of flavonoids in passion flower like isovitexin, saponarin, glycosides and alkaloids suppresses nervous disorders and induces fast asleep on users. Hops, Jamaica dogwood, St John's wort, chamomile, balm, oats, skull cap and wild lettuce are other common recommended best natural sleeping aids.
Over-the-counter (OTC) sleep aids and sleeping pills
The main ingredient in over-the-counter sleeping pills is an antihistamine. Antihistamines, in brand name medications such as Benadryl, are generally taken for allergies, hay fever and common cold symptoms. While the positive effects have not been substantiated through research, the side effects, such as next-day drowsiness, can be common and severe.
Common OTC sleep medications include:
• Diphenhydramine (found in brand names like Nytol, Sominex, Sleepinal, Compoz)
• Doxylamine (brand names such as Unisom, Nighttime Sleep Aid)
Some other OTC sleep aids combine antihistamines with the pain reliever Acetaminophen (found in brand names like Tylenol PM and Aspirin-Free Anacin PM). Others, such as NyQuil, combine antihistamines with alcohol.
OTC sleep aids are meant to be used for short-term insomnia only. Sleep experts generally advise against the use of over-the-counter (OTC) sleep aids because of side effects, questions about their effectiveness, and lack of information about their safety over the long-term.
Herbal sleep aids
There are several herbs thought to help sleep, including chamomile, valerian root, kava kava, lemon balm, passionflower, lavender, and St. John’s Wort. Many people drink chamomile tea for its gentle sedative properties, although it may cause allergic reactions in those with plant or pollen allergies. While there is some data showing valerian to be useful for insomnia, at high doses it can cause vivid dreams, blurred vision, changes in heart rhythm, and excitability.
Natural Remedies for Insomnia
1) Valerian: Valerian (Valeriana officinalis) is a herb that has been long used as a remedy for insomnia. Valerian is usually taken between an hour before bedtime. It takes about two to three weeks to work. It shouldn't be used for more than three months at a time. Side effects of valerian may include mild indigestion, headache, palpitations, and dizziness. Although valerian tea and liquid extracts are available, most people don't like the smell of valerian and prefer taking the capsule form.
Valerian shouldn't be taken with many medications, especially those that depress the central nervous system, such as sedatives and antihistamines. Valerian shouldn't be taken with alcohol, before or after surgery, or by people with liver disease. It should not be taken before driving or operating machinery. Consultation with a qualified health practitioner is recommended.
2) Melatonin: Melatonin is a popular remedy to help people fall asleep when the sleep/wake cycle has been disturbed, such as in shift workers or people who with jet lag. Melatonin is a hormone found naturally in the body. The pineal gland in the brain makes serotonin which is then converted into melatonin at night when exposure to light decreases.
Melatonin is typically taken about 30 minutes before the desired bedtime. Some experts caution that melatonin should not be used by people with depression, schizophrenia, autoimmune diseases, and other serious illness. Pregnant and nursing women should not use melatonin.
3) Kava: Kava: It is an anti-anxiety herb that may be helpful for anxiety-related insomnia. However, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued an advisory to consumers about the potential risk of severe liver injury resulting from the use of dietary supplements containing kava.
4) Relaxation Techniques: Relaxation techniques are one of the most effective ways to increase sleep time, fall asleep faster, and feel more rested in the morning. They require a minimum of 20 minutes before going to bed. There are many different techniques like Visualization, Relaxation Response, Mindfulness and Yoga - combines deep breathing, meditation, and stretching. A Harvard study found that daily yoga for eight weeks improved total sleep time, the time to fall asleep.
5) Diet: Cut Out Caffeine, Caffeine can have a pronounced effect on sleep, causing insomnia and restlessness. In addition to coffee, tea, and soft drinks, look for hidden sources of caffeine such as chocolate, cough and cold medicine, and other over-the-counter medicine. Also avoid sweets, although sugar can give a burst of energy, it's short-lived and can cause uneven blood sugar levels. This can disrupt sleep in the middle of the night as blood sugar levels fall. Eat Magnesium-Rich Foods, Magnesium is a natural sedative. Deficiency of magnesium can result in difficulty sleeping, constipation, muscle tremors or cramps, anxiety, irritability, and pain. It has also been use for people with restless leg syndrome.
Foods rich in magnesium are legumes and seeds, dark leafy green vegetables, wheat bran, almonds, cashews, blackstrap molasses, brewer's yeast, and whole grains.
6) Aromatherapy: The scent of the aromatherapy oil English lavender has long been used as a folk remedy to help people fall asleep. It's been found to lengthen total sleep time, increase deep sleep, and make people feel refreshed. It appears to work better for women, possibly because women tend to have a more acute sense of smell.
7) Light: If you have trouble falling asleep at night, you may need more light in the morning. Light exposure plays a key role in telling the body when to go to sleep and when to wake up. Try taking a walk first thing in the morning. Just be sure to wear sunscreen to protect your skin from ultraviolet rays.
8) Music: Gentle, slow music is another remedy that can help to improve sleep without medication. Music therapy has been found to improve sleep quality, decrease nightly wakenings, lengthen sleep time, and increase satisfaction with sleep.
9) Acupuncture: Acupuncture may help with insomnia. A University of Pittsburgh analysis concluded that acupuncture may be an effective treatment for insomnia. A preliminary study found that five weeks of acupuncture increase melatonin secretion in the evening and improved total sleep time.
10) Ayurvedic Medicine: In Ayurvedic medicine, insomnia is often associated with a vata imbalance. Vata regulates breathing and circulation. People with a vata imbalance often notice irritability, anxiety, and fear with insomnia. One Ayurvedic treatment is the application of oil on the head and feet. For the pitta type, room temperature coconut oil is used, for the vata type, warm sesame oil is applied, and for the kapha type, warm mustard oil is often applied.
11) Exercise: Lack of exercise can contribute to poor sleep. Muscle tension and stress build in the body. Exercise can promote deep sleep that night. However, intense exercise too close to bed can increase adrenaline levels, leading to insomnia.
12) Other Natural Remedies: For hot flashes, a thin, flat foam pillow insert, called a Chillow, can help to cool the head throughout the night. Chamomile, hops, passionflower, lemon balm, and ashwagandha are other herbs that are often used for insomnia. Some people may find benefit from simply having a cup of chamomile tea one to two hours before going to bed. Chamomile can reduce anxiety, calm the digestive system, and relieve muscle tension.
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