Treatment for insomnia
Treatment for insomnia usually starts with the most simple adjustments in your lifestyle and daily routine. Changing sleep patterns and fixing any insomnia-related problems, such as stress, medical conditions, or medication, can restore restful sleep for many. If those changes don’t help, your medical provider may propose cognitive-behavioral sessions, drugs, or a combination of both to improve your relaxation and sleep.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy – effective treatment for insomnia
Cognitive-behavioral therapy for insomnia aims to control or eliminate negative feelings and arrangements that keep you up. Thus, CBT is usually suggested as a first-line healing method for patients with sleeplessness, wakefulness, and restlessness. In general, CBT for insomnia is considered almost as effective as hypnotherapy.
The cognitive fragment of CBT explains to a patient how to recognize and adapt beliefs that disturb her aptitude to fall asleep. It can also help the patient to control or eliminate harmful feelings and fears that keep them awake. This method can also eliminate or break a cycle that can advance in which you are so frightened to fall asleep that you cannot fall asleep.
The behavioral piece of CBT for insomnia aims to advance decent sleep conduct and sidestep performances that prevent patients from sleeping healthy. Strategies that are commonly used by the behavioral part of CBT for insomnia are:
This method helps eliminate the factors causing your mind to resist sleep. For example, you may be taught to set a consistent bedtime and wake times, avoid naps, use the bed only for sleep and sex, and leave the bedroom if you cannot sleep for 20 minutes, returning only when sleepy.
Relaxation techniques. Progressive muscle relaxation, biofeedback, and breathing exercises are ways to reduce sleep anxiety. Practicing these techniques will help you control your breathing, heart rate, muscle tension, and mood so you can relax.
This therapeutic technique decreases your time in bed and avoids naps during the day, causing partial sleep deprivation and making you more tired the next night. As soon as your snooze has improved, your bedtime is gradually increased.
Stay passively awake.
Also called paradoxical intention, this therapy for learned insomnia aims to reduce worry and anxiety about being able to fall asleep by getting into bed and trying to stay awake rather than expecting to fall asleep.
If a patient falls asleep too early and, as a result, wakes up before, the medical practitioner may recommend using light to push the patient’s internal clock. It is recommended to go out during the times of the year when daylight is outside at night or to use a lightbox.
The counselor may also suggest other tactics associated with a patient’s lifestyle and sleep environment to help to change conducts that promote sound sleep and daytime alertness.
Prescription drugs – the most common treatment for insomnia
Prescription sleeping pills can help you fall asleep, stay asleep, or both. Doctors generally do not recommend relying on prescription sleeping pills for over a few weeks, but a few medications are approved for long-term use.
The most commonly prescribed drugs for insomnia are:
- Eszopiclone (Lunesta)
- Ramelteon (Rozerem)
- Zaleplon (Sonata)
- Zolpidem (Ambien, Edluar, Intermezzo, Zolpimist)
Prescription sleeping pills can cause side effects such as making you tired during the day and increasing the risk of falling, or they can induce habits, so talk to your physician about these pharmaceutical drugs and other probable side effects.
Over-the-counter sleep aids – very often help if used as a part of treatment for insomnia.
Non-prescription sleep aids contain antihistamines that can make you sleepy but are not intended for regular use. Before taking these, please talk to your doctor, as antihistamines can cause side effects such as daytime sleepiness, dizziness, confusion, cognitive impairment, and difficulty urinating, which can worsen in older adults.
What Is Insomnia?
It’s a disorder marked by problems sleeping or remaining asleep. Insomnia can be acute as well as chronic. The duration varies from person to person. There are two forms of insomnia: primary and secondary.
If your insomnia isn’t related to any problem or health condition, it’s characterized as primary; however, if it arises from a health condition, substance use, pain, or medication, it’s described as secondary insomnia.
Risk Factors for Insomnia
Insomnia is more prevalent in women than men and primarily affects older people. Other risk factors are:
- Working on night shifts
- Mental health issues
- Long-term illness
What causes insomnia
Insomnia may be a significant problem, or it may be related to other medical conditions.
Chronic insomnia is usually the result of stress, life events, or habits that interfere with sleep. Treating the underlying causes of insomnia can fix a broken sleeping routine, but it can sometimes take years.
The most common causes of chronic insomnia are:
Tension and chronic stress.
Concerns about work, school, health, finances, or family can keep your mind active at night, making sleeping difficult. Stressful life events or injuries – such as the death or illness of a loved one, divorce, or job loss – can also lead to insomnia.
Travel or work schedule.
Your circadian rhythm is an internal clock that guides your sleep-wake cycle, metabolism, and body temperature. Disruption of the body’s circadian rhythm can lead to insomnia. Causes include jet lag caused by traveling across multiple time zones, working late or early shifts, or frequent shifts.
Bad sleeping habits.
Bad sleep habits include irregular sleeping schedules, naps, stimulating activities before bed, an uncomfortable sleeping environment, and using your bed to work, eat, or watch TV. Computers, televisions, video games, smartphones, or other screens can disrupt your sleep cycle just before bed.
Overeating in the evening.
Having a light snack before bed is okay, but overeating can make you feel physically uncomfortable while lying down. Many people also experience heartburn, reflux of acid, and food from the stomach into the esophagus after eating, which can keep you awake.
Chronic sleeplessness can also be accompanied by some severe medical conditions or the use of certain pharmaceutical drugs. Treatment for insomnia-related conditions will temporarily improve night sleep, but insomnia itself may persist after it improves and relapses are expected.
Other common causes of insomnia are:
Mental health disorders.
General anxiety disorder (GAD) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) may affect a patient’s sleep. Waking up too early sometimes is a sign of depression. Insomnia also often occurs based on primary mental health disorders.
Many prescription drugs can interfere with sleep, such as antidepressants and medicines for asthma or high blood pressure. Numerous over-the-counter medicines, such as pain relievers, anti-histamines, popular cold medicines, and weight loss, contain caffeine and other stimulants that often interfere with a healthy night’s sleep.
People who suffer from an inability to fall asleep or wake commonly experience the following symptoms of insomnia:
Natural remedies for insomnia – the most common form of treatment for insomnia
Natural remedies for insomnia become more demanded by patients than regular pharmaceutical drugs for sleep disturbances. People often resort to sleeping pills to deal with their insomnia. In 2015 alone, Americans spent a staggering 41 billion USD on sleeping aids and remedies. By 2020, this is expected to reach 52 billion. And these sleeping pills often come with adverse effects. That’s why natural treatment for insomnia is more popular nowadays.
People have been increasingly resorting to natural solutions to deal with their insomnia in recent years. A popular misconception is that natural remedies lack any scientific backup. This is not always true. There are various home and natural remedies for insomnia that are effective and a much safer alternative. Numerous drug-free remedies are backed by science.
Home Remedies for Insomnia
Several home remedies for insomnia can provide relief, such as
Melatonin #1 home remedy for Insomnia
Melatonin remains one of the most popular and reached out to home remedies for insomnia. It can improve the quality of your sleep and aid you in falling asleep faster. It can drastically enhance sleeping patterns, particularly for people with cancer and insomnia. Between 7 to 14 days, significant improvement in sleep quality can be noticed.
1-5 mg of melatonin about 30 minutes to 2 hours before sleeping is recommended. It would be best to stick to minimal dosages as melatonin in higher dosages may have adverse effects.
Lavender Oil #2 home remedy for insomnia
Lavender is an excellent home remedy to lessen pain, improve mood, and enhance the quality of your sleep. Oral ingestion is the best method to reap the benefits of lavender.
Studies show that lavender and an anti-depressant effectively enhance sleep patterns for people with depression. It can also lower the levels of anxiety, which can further improve sleep quality.
You can consume 20-80 mg of lavender daily if you want this natural remedy. Lavender tea is also an excellent option. Additionally, you can spray some lavender oil on your pillow with a diffuser.
Magnesium – another effective home remedy for insomnia
Studies show that magnesium is beneficial in lessening insomnia symptoms and improving sleeping patterns. 300 mg is recommended for women and 400mg for men. You can divide your doses throughout the day or take them before you sleep.
You should always start with the smallest dose and gradually increase it to determine how much your body can take. Other than home remedies for insomnia, various natural treatments for insomnia can provide exceptional solutions.
Acupuncture – an ancient Chinese natural treatment for insomnia.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), it is considered that, in addition to the presence of external factors that affect mood and emotions, insomnia can also be caused by insufficient nutrients in the body, poor blood circulation, or possible inconsistencies or incompatibilities between Organ functions such as heart, kidneys, liver, spleen, and gallbladder. The initial diagnosis can be made by asking about the patient’s sleep history, such as whether the patient has difficulty sleeping, is waking up frequently, has difficulty going back to sleep after waking up, or, in severe cases, is unable to sleep through the night. Alternatively, the patient may be asked if other symptoms include headache, dizziness, heart palpitations, forgetfulness, fatigue, lack of energy, nervousness, frequent dreams, anxiety, and depression. Diagnosis may also consist of other systematic checkups and lab work results.
When treating insomnia with traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncturists first make a diagnosis and then use acupuncture to help regulate and balance the body. You may also recommend using common herbs as dietary supplements or in cooking, including herbal teas, which are easy to drink daily. These herbs include jujube, lingzhi mushroom, honey, dried longan, and chamomile tea, some of which have medicinal properties that can help nourish connected organs or have nerve and muscle relaxing properties, making it easier for the patient to fall asleep. Traditional acupuncture treatment for insomnia uses tiny needles to access specific points on the body that correspond to the patient’s symptoms. The needles are inserted into active acupoints for 20-40 minutes and removed. The patient will receive further treatment 2 to 3 times per week for 12 sessions, which counts as one course.
The length of acupuncture treatment for insomnia hinges on the severity of symptoms, the type of sleeplessness, and the age of the insomnia patient. For example, acute insomnia may require one course of treatment over about a month. A transient type of insomnia may necessitate fewer than 12 treatments, while a chronic and persistent type of insomnia may require more than one treatment course.
Homeopathy – our signature natural treatment for insomnia.
For people suffering from insomnia, homeopathy for insomnia is an excellent choice. Homeopathy offers various remedies to deal with insomnia, such as:
- Nux Vomica: This homeopathic remedy is potent if you have digestive problems and insomnia. It can also effectively mitigate irritability and sleeplessness.
- Lachesis: Lachesis is prescribed if your insomnia symptoms are aggravated during or after sleep. It’s particularly useful if you’re having trouble sleeping on your left side or you get interrupted continuously by vivid dreams or even a sensation of suffocation.
- Coffea Cruda: This homeopathic remedy is potent in inducing people to sleep. It can improve sleep quality, minimize overthinking, and calm a restless mind.
- Hyoscyamus Niger: This homeopathic remedy is an excellent solution for overactive children suffering from insomnia due to disturbed sleep from imaginary visions and fears.
These are not the only remedies. Homeopathy offers various effective natural remedies for insomnia that are personalized to target the individual’s symptoms. Homeopaths also conduct a complete evaluation to get to the root of the problems, allowing the possibility of finding long-lasting results. Generally, homeopathic natural remedies for insomnia are significantly safer than conventional methods.
Hypnosis – one of the most effective, if not the best, natural treatments for hypnosis
For certain people, hypnosis for insomnia provides exceptional results compared to conventional medication and treatment. You’ll experience focused attention, deep relaxation, and an enhanced openness to suggestions by putting you in a trance-like state.
Thanks to its ability to enhance responsiveness, this alternative therapy is routinely used for reactions and behaviors that may be causing health issues such as insomnia. Hypnosis can induce your mind and body to relax and eliminate the anxiety often related to insomnia.
When in a hypnotic condition, a person might be intensely focused on a single concept or image. This makes them less conscious of their surroundings and encourages what can seem like a trance.
A person’s brain activity alters under hypnosis, making them more open to new concepts. A form of mind-body treatment called hypnotherapy uses recommendations to favorably affect a person’s thoughts and behavior while they are hypnotized.
Pain and some side effects of cancer treatment are among the health issues that hypnotherapy has been demonstrated to be beneficial in treating. It may support behavior changes like stopping smoking or decreasing weight and mental health issues like depression and anxiety.
Hypnosis for insomnia can also amplify your deep sleep by up to 80 percent. It’s a great alternative therapy for people with insomnia. It often provided results where even conventional methods fail. You must seek an experienced hypnotist to try this natural insomnia remedy.
Yoga for insomnia – great option from the list of natural treatments for insomnia
Research shows that yoga for insomnia can significantly improve sleep quality and pattern. It can also reduce stress, boost mental focus, and enhance physical functioning. If you’re willing to try yoga to help deal with your insomnia, concentrate on breathwork and moving meditation rather than intense physical movements. Yin and restorative yoga are excellent for insomnia.
It’s recommended that you carry out a few longer duration sessions per week and about 20 minutes of self-practice per day. You can also perform the posture before bed to help you unwind and relax. Yoga is an excellent natural treatment for insomnia.
Treatment for insomnia in Philadelphia.
Insomnia can prevent you from living an optimal quality of life. Taking prescription drugs can often have adverse effects, further deteriorating sleep quality. Home and other natural remedies for insomnia and other natural treatments for insomnia are great alternatives to dealing with your sleeping disorder.
Since it is natural, it may take a little more time to see noticeable results; however, the effects can be long-lasting and generally considered safe. Natural remedies for insomnia, like hypnosis, acupuncture, and homeopathy, are also remarkable and can provide exceptional results even when their conventional counterparts fail to do so.
Suppose you suffer from insomnia and prefer safe and effective natural remedies for insomnia. Contact Philadelphia Holistic Clinic to book your appointment for evaluation and further treatment. Ask Dr. Tsan which of the holistic approaches is best for you.
You can also schedule an appointment online using our secure scheduling application. Scan the QR code below, choose a convenient day and time, and visit the office.