Do you lie awake at night, worrying about… well anything and everything? Do you make lists, think of things that you have to do, think about the things you did or didn’t do today, check the clock toss and turn and worry about what time you have to get up the next morning and how tired you are going to be because you just can’t get to sleep?

Maybe you are OK getting to sleep, but you can only sleep for a certain amount of time and then you wake up, switch position, grab a snack, but no matter what you do you can’t seem to stay asleep.

You know this isn’t healthy, but what are the sleepless to do?

Proper rest and sleep is one of the major ingredients to good health. The quality of your sleep really does affect the quality of every other part of your life. Sure diet and exercise have long term impact on your health, and you will definitely notice a difference in your energy level depending on those two elements, but sleep for many people is far more impacting.

Think about what your day is like after you have had a restless or bad sleep. Waking up starts your whole day off on the wrong foot, because you don’t really have any interest in getting out of bed, because it feels like you have hardly gotten any sleep. You walk around all day like a zombie, as lack of sleep affects your co-ordination, concentration, ability to remember and retain information and it changes your mood, usually for the worse. Lack of proper sleep also makes you more prone to accidents and impacts your health dramatically by compromising your immune system’s functioning.

Some people reach for drugs, hoping for some relief but often they get more problems than what they began with.

Some of the problems with taking pharmaceutical sleeping aids are:

Drug dependance: you may become unable to sleep or have even worse symptoms if you stop taking the medication than you did before. If you do stop the medication abruptly, there is the posibility of withdrawal symptoms such as nausea, sweating and shaking along with sleeplessness called rebound insomnia.

Side effects : these can include but are not limited to daytime drowsiness, confusion, forgetfulness and dry mouth, urinary retention, constipation, blurred vision, dizziness, clumsiness and feeling off balance.

Drug interactions : some sleep medications can interfere with other medications that you are taking, even over the counter painkillers or cold medications.

The most concerning issue for me though is the masking of an underlying problem. If you are having a problem sleeping, there is always a reason why. Regardless of whether the sleeplessness is a result of something more emotionally based such as stress at work or worry about a loved one; or it is caused by physical discomfort or metabolic problems, the underlying issue needs to be addressed for the sleep to be truly restful.

Tips for getting a better night’s sleep

1. Keep work and TV out of the bedroom. Many people wind down for sleep by watching TV or reading a book right before bed, while in bed. Most of the time though you end up watching or reading more than you had initially intended to. This is also confusing to the body because we get training for certain activities by situations. If your body expects to watch T.V. While in bed or catching up on some late night email, you are not going to fall asleep as easily.

2. Keep your room as dark as possible. A bright light outside of your bedroom window, a computer or TV screen flickering confuses the bodies circadian rhythms’ and prevents you from reaching a deep state of sleep.

3. Refrain from having anything with caffeine after 3 pm

4. Make sure your bed is big enough for you and is the proper firmness. Proper bedding is important and a saggy mattress or a pillow that is overenthusiastic are not going to help you sleep.

5. Adjust the temperature to be a little bit cooler, with good ventilation, but no drafts.

6. Do something calming and repetitious to wind down. Chamomile tea, meditation, or a little light reading before bed can sometimes do the trick.

7. Leave work at work. Don’t talk about stressful things or to do lists at least an hour before bedtime.

Homeopathy and sleep

If you have tried all of the above, and still you cannot slip into and stay in a restful satisfying sleep, there is definitely a problem. Your mind and body depend on rest to function properly and this interruption is your bodies’ way of letting you know, in no uncertain terms that there is something that you need to address. Until you have figure out and addressed the reason that you are not getting to sleep, your problem will continue. Underlying causes can vary greatly but usually tend to be related to anxiety about something in your life that is not being paid enough attention or too much attention as the case may be.

Homeopathy can help to address the underlying cause of the sleeplessness by assisting you with the overwhelmed or anxious feelings that are not allowing you to relax and just fall asleep. Homeopathy can also help to deal with physical symptoms that may prevent sleep such as restless legs, nightmares, headaches, sleep apnea or loud snoring and numerous others. If you are tired of being tired, if your lack of sleep has become habitual, it is not something you just have to suffer with. You have options, and proper treatment will positively affect all aspects of your life.