In today’s modern world our pace of life is faster and more stressful than that of our ancestors. This is why the sleep aid industry has experienced a huge upsurge in business. As many of us turn to more natural ways of getting our bodies back in sync, we wish to avoid many of the downsides of these man-made drugs and preparations.
What’s Your Natural Sleep Aid?
Below you’ll find a fun interactive image that helps you the reader reflect on What Helps You Get to Sleep at Night?. As you explore what sounds, images, or music best helps you nod off and “wake up” in dream land, you might find something out about yourself that you didn’t know. So check it out – what’s your natural sleep aid?
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If a snoring spouse, barking dogs, traffic outside or birds chirping at 4 am affect your ability to get a good night’s sleep, you are far from alone. “The research is pretty solid that noise can prevent people from getting a good night’s sleep,” says Ken Hume, a principal lecturer in human physiology at the Manchester Metropolitan University in England. What’s more, noises as quiet as 40 decibels – akin to the sounds between a quiet whisper from six feet and a normal conversation at three feet – can keep us from sleeping, reports the National Sleep Foundation.
As summer begins beating down with the full force of longer days and the sun’s most powerful rays, thoughts of staying cool while sleeping are weighing heavily on many sleep-deprived minds. The simple solution is to seek out ways to cool off despite the heat outside. These are a few great tips that will have you sleeping soundly despite the rising temperatures outside.
What you eat before bed can have a profound impact on your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep at night. The key is to find foods that help you sleep and healthy bedtime snacks that will not prevent you from getting the sleep you need. Some foods, and portion sizes, interfere with your ability to fall asleep at night. You’ve probably been told not to eat large snacks filled with fried, fatty food right before going to bed. But, what is good to eat?
Not only is it disturbing to your sleep partner, but snoring can lead to fatigue, moodiness, irritability, reduced ability to focus, and over time, sleep deprivation. Luckily, these days, there are a number of things that you can do to reduce or even eliminate your snoring, including a stop snoring pillow.
Co-sleeping with your baby can have quite a few benefits for both child and parent. You can quickly respond to midnight needs, you can constantly monitor your child, and you provide a sense of comfort that an infant needs in order to relax and become more secure in his or her surroundings. However, there are concerns in the bed that you need to be mindful of in order to provide a safe-sleeping environment.
While some may think bedtime rituals are unnecessary, they are actually quite important. They help you prepare your body for the act of going to sleep. Once they become routine, they provide important cues for your brain that it’s time to enter into your nightly slowdown mode. The problem most people have is deciding what types of activities should be included in their bedtime rituals. Here are a few great ideas.
Most people envision pampered debutantes when they think of sleep masks. The truth of the matter is that the people who need them most are often hard working people just like you. No one will argue the necessity or benefits of a good night’s sleep. It’s important to your overall health and well-being. However, many people around the world struggle to get the very sleep they need. A sleep mask can provide a great deal of help in that regard.
The US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health report, Effects of Drugs on Sleep, states that: “Chronic use or abuse of certain drugs may lead to the development of substance-related sleep disorders. Primary sleep disorders, such as apnea, periodic movement disorders, and parasomnias, may be exacerbated by various drugs.”
According to a Harvard Report on how External Factors Influence Sleep, the impact of prescription medications on sleep varies from one type to the next. For instance, beta blockers, which are commonly used to reduce blood pressure, cause decreased slow-wave sleep and in important REM sleep, while increasing sleepiness during the daytime hours. Alpha blockers, also used to reduce blood pressure and to treat some prostate conditions, also lead to decreases in REM sleep as well as boosts to daytime sleepiness. Some antidepressants, known as SSRIs, are believed to actually promote insomnia. The long-term impact of other antidepressant drugs on sleep are, as of yet, unknown.