Prevention and treatment of insomnia

Table of Contents

Sleep is the same human need as food and water. If you completely abandon it or reduce the duration to a few hours, then after 4-5 days serious health problems will appear. Even replacing night sleep with day sleep can be harmful for those who have to work around the clock. Lack of adequate sleep leads to endocrine disorders, diseases of the cardiovascular and digestive systems, nervous and mental illnesses. Therefore, insomnia, or insomnia, is a disease in which the process of falling asleep or sleep itself is disrupted.

Causes of insomnia

Insomnia is more common in women than in men. And in pregnant women it is observed in 75% of cases. Women are susceptible to the disease during menopause, when hormonal changes cause a surge in thyroid activity in the evening and at night. This is accompanied by tachycardia, sweating and inability to sleep.

Insomnia has a large number of causes, some of which are related to a person’s lifestyle:

  • poor sleep hygiene – extraneous noise, bright lights, constant vibration or uncomfortable bed;
  • stressful conditions – severe psychotraumatic situations, unusual sleeping conditions, nervous overstrain;
  • changing time zones, working at night;
  • mental illness – depression, anxiety disorders;
  • the effect of psychoactive substances – alcohol abuse, smoking, large amounts of caffeinated drinks, medications from the group of no tropics, antipsychotics, antidepressants;
  • pregnancy – insomnia is associated with changes in the functioning of the nervous system, discomfort and difficulty breathing due to a large belly.

Night sleep disturbances can be caused by somatic diseases. Digestive problems, heart and vascular diseases, and increased activity of the thyroid gland lead to insomnia. Pain and aches in the joints due to arthritis or ARVI will also prevent you from falling asleep.

In older age, insomnia is associated with age-related changes in the brain, the development of Parkinson’s disease, dementia and other neurological causes. But regardless of the factors due to which a person cannot sleep, the problem requires treatment.

How to fall asleep quickly if you have insomnia

Scientists believe that healthy sleep is a reflex mechanism. If a person goes to bed and does not fall asleep after 15-20 minutes, you should not lie in it any longer. Otherwise, this will lead to the formation of a new reflex: bed-insomnia.

You can independently fight acute insomnia that has arisen for the first time. First you need to get rid of the factors that interfere with sleep. To do this, you need to turn off the TV or computer monitor, curtain the windows if the light of lanterns or the moon shines through the window.

It is bad to fall asleep in a stuffy and hot room. Therefore, if the question arises of how to fall asleep with insomnia, you need to open the window for ventilation and reduce the heat supply to the heating radiators. During this time, you can go for a leisurely walk in the fresh air. After returning home, drink a glass of warm milk or herbal tea. This is an old method that has proven effective for mild disorders.

Milk contains substances that help produce melatonin. This is a pineal gland hormone that regulates circadian rhythms, changes in sleep and wakefulness, and controls the functioning of the immune and endocrine systems. Therefore, insomnia increases the risk of infectious diseases and metabolic disorders, problems in the male reproductive system.

Reading helps you fall asleep quickly. But for this you need to choose not an exciting detective story, but literature of a calm nature, which usually causes drowsiness. If these methods do not help you fall asleep, the disturbances persist and bother you regularly, an examination and consultation with a doctor is necessary.

Prevention of insomnia

In order not to have to look for ways to treat insomnia, it is necessary to take preventive measures:

  • go to bed no later than 23:00;
  • stop watching TV and using a smartphone 2 hours before bedtime;
  • do not eat large amounts of food at night, do not eat heavy meals;
  • do not go to bed feeling hungry;
  • ventilate the bedroom before going to bed;
  • do not drink alcohol, coffee, strong tea.

Daytime sleep will not interfere with falling asleep in the evening if you set aside 1-2 hours for it. But if they replace night rest, this will provoke the development of insomnia.

Getting up in the morning is also part of the prevention of insomnia. You should try to get up at the same time and do exercises to improve your tone. In order not to disrupt the sleep reflex, there is a recommendation not to use the bed for other purposes. You should only go to bed when you feel drowsy and not stay long to eat, read or watch a movie.

How to get rid of insomnia at home

You can deal with poor sleep on your own. For mild forms of insomnia, traditional treatment methods can be used. At home, make foot baths with dill, after which you take a glass of warm milk with honey and quickly go to bed. In case of increased nervous excitability, prefabricated infusions of medicinal herbs help, for which they use:

  • motherwort grass;
  • valerian root;
  • Mint leaves.

If the cause of the disturbances is stress, it is necessary to use methods of struggle that calm the nervous system. At home, you can use various methods of relaxation and master meditation. Their action is supplemented with aromatherapy. Essential oils of mint, lemon balm, and chamomile quickly relieve nervous tension .

Sleep rituals help you fall asleep effectively. If you choose the same time for this and perform a certain list of actions (dinner, airing the room, hygiene before bed and other options), then with each such preparation the body will tune in to fall asleep quickly.

For people who are busy with mental work during the day, hard physical work helps cure insomnia. This is called the “peasant life effect.” After a heavy load, a person’s production of the hormone adenosine increases. This substance causes a feeling of fatigue, inhibits brain activity, which leads to rapid falling asleep.

It is difficult to deal with insomnia during pregnancy. In the later stages, deterioration in falling asleep is associated with deterioration of pulmonary ventilation and excitability of the nervous system. Most drugs are prohibited for use in pregnant women. Therefore, they choose simple ways to improve sleep: a comfortable position on the bed on your side with a raised edge, using a special pillow for pregnant women, airing the room and valerian tablets.

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Medicines for insomnia

If home remedies do not cure your insomnia, you should consult a doctor. To restore normal sleep patterns, it is necessary to eliminate the cause of the disturbances. Therefore, the first drugs will be used against the underlying disease.

Drug therapy begins with safe drugs. The doctor may prescribe melatonin tablets, which are an analogue of your own hormone. They treat sleep disorders and do not have many side effects. The development of addiction practically does not happen. But if used incorrectly, nightmares and headaches may occur. Therefore, the drug should be used after consulting a doctor.

For severe sleep disorders, your doctor may prescribe pills with a prescription. But they do not cure the disease if it is associated with stress or poor sleep hygiene. Therefore, any treatment must be accompanied by preventive measures. Sleep disorders are cured by drugs based on doxylamine, for example, Valocordin-doxylamine . They are available in the form of tablets and drops for oral administration. But long-term use of sleeping pills is not recommended due to the risk of addiction.

Doctors also consider insomnia as a psychological problem, which training and cognitive behavioral psychotherapy help combat. Insomnia can be cured using group psychotherapy and hypnosis. These techniques help eliminate disorders even with prolonged chronic illness.

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