We all struggle at times with sleep problems. If you have a pattern of not being able to get to sleep, or not being able to stay asleep, though, it’s time to give it some serious thought. None of us are able to perform optimally when we haven’t had adequate sleep the night before.
Feeling overwhelmed with stress can have a huge impact on the quality of our sleep. If that’s something you know you need help with, please pick up the phone and call a therapist. Many of us specialize in helping you find healthy ways to manage your stress. If you’re in California, and would like to connect with me, I can be reached here.
There are other things that contribute to insomnia. Caffeine is a real problem for many people. If you have a sensitivity to caffeine, you may want to gradually cut out caffeine from your diet. Most of us can benefit from not having caffeine after mid-day. Think about how much caffeine you’re consuming. It’s not just in coffee. There are many sources of caffeine.
Some people think that alcohol relaxes them and helps them to sleep better. That isn’t true. It might initially help you get to sleep, but it interferes with the quality of sleep. If you’re interested in more information, read this article from WebMD. Some people use alcohol to self-medicate, rather than getting at the root of what’s bothering them. Therapy can help you find other healthier ways to increase your well-being.
There are many ways to improve the quality of your sleep. Lowering the stimulus around you the last hour or two before bed helps. (Turn off the t.v. and computer, and lower the lights.) Don’t have a t.v. in your bedroom, or a desk and computer. (The bedroom is for sex and sleeping only.) Make sure your room is dark – no nightlights or lighted digital clocks. If you’re sensitive to sudden noise, use a white noise machine to mask any unexpected sounds. Develop a bedtime routine, that your follow nightly. Those are just a few of the things that can make a big difference. (* I’ll be writing a more thorough article on sleep in the next few weeks that you will be able to find on my website — stay tuned for that.)
Don’t give up and go through life being tired all the time! Sleep deprivation takes a big toll on us in many serious ways. If you need help, empower yourself to ask for it. In the meantime, making the changes that I’ve mentioned can make a big difference, if done consistently. Sweet dreams!
Until next time,