For many of us, summer offers more ease, and possibly more rest. Schedules are looser, play, nature, socializing and fun is prioritized and the living is easy. Fall often brings a forward momentum, we find ourselves getting back into the swing of things and amping up our life. This is natural, but our bodies need sleep and rest to support our energy. Below are some natural ways to support the health of your sleep, your body-mind-spirit and emotional states can maintain regulation and relaxation.
There’s a strong link between sleep disturbance and mental health issues. According to this Harvard article, Americans are already having trouble getting a good night’s sleep because of a slew of factors. Among these include stress, constant traveling, money problems, marriage issues, constant worry about the children’s welfare, and the like. However, those who are dealing with mental health problems, such as anxiety, bipolar disorder, and depression are much more likely to develop insomnia, as well. The risk factor shoots up to as high as 80% compared to just 10-18% of adults who have trouble sleeping.
While some of the causes of sleep disturbance may need some medical or psychiatric help, here are some natural remedies to help you get some shuteye:
Essential oils have been proven to help promote sleep. Look out for lavender, valerian root, chamomile, and bergamot as the active ingredient since they are especially effective for insomniacs. Humans’ brains are wired to associate scents with a pleasant memory, and this will help you relax.
Drink some tea
Perhaps the most widely recognized of the elixirs for the sleep deprived is chamomile tea. A cup right before you sleep will help your body and mind relax. But you shouldn’t limit yourself to only this type of tea. Other teas with lemon balm, passionflower, lavender, and peppermint should be considered, as well.
Invest in a good mattress
A good mattress, pillow, and thick curtains or blinds to block out the light will help put you in the right frame of mind to drown out your stress and sleep. Ear plugs and sleep masks also offer great assistance to create a sleep sanctuary.
Meditation or mantra
A mantra could be a phrase, word, or even just a hum, which ancient civilizations believe has spiritual power for healing. While yogis may tell you about its effectiveness based on centuries of experience, science also seems to back this claim. A 2015 study on homeless women confirmed that those who continued to repeat the mantra for one week reported that it helped them beat insomnia.
A 2011 study by the Appalachian State University suggested that early morning exercise will do wonders for having a good night’s sleep in addition to actually reducing high blood pressure. The researchers said that based on their study, exercise done before 7 a.m. provides the most optimum benefit. While there are many ways in which exercise promotes sleep—such as making you more relaxed as it drives away anxiety, for instance—one that shouldn’t be ignored is that exercise makes you feel tired. Being tired will help you fall asleep.
You are not alone if you’re struggling with sleep issues. Follow our tips above to try and remedy the situation as naturally and gently as possible.
At Strength in Motion Counseling, we are here to support you on your journey to finding mental and spiritual peace. Taking care and nurturing your physical health, especially your sleep, is an easy way to care for your mind, soul, and body. Get in touch to join our supporting and caring community.