Treatment for insomnia
Treatment for insomnia usually starts from the most simple adjustments in your lifestyle and daily routine. Changing sleep patterns and fixing any problems that may be related to insomnia, 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, medications, or a combination of both to progress your relaxation and sleep abilities.
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 and thus CBT is usually suggested as first-line healing 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 your aptitude to fall asleep. It can also help the patient to control or eliminate harmful feelings and fears that keep him/her awake. This method can also eliminate or break a cycle that can advance in which you are so frightened to fall asleep that you are unable to fall asleep.
The behavioral piece of CBT for insomnia aims to advance decent sleep conducts 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 that are causing your mind to resist sleep. For example, you may be taught to set consistent bedtime and wake times and avoid naps, use the bed only for sleep and sex, and leave the bedroom if you cannot sleep for 20 minutes, returning only when you are 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 the time you spend in bed and avoids naps during the day, causing partial sleep deprivation, 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 also early, 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 it is daylight 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 more than a few weeks, but a few medications are approved for long-term use.
The most commonly prescribed drugs for insomnia are:
- Ezopiclone (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 they are not intended for regular use. Please talk to your doctor before taking these, as antihistamines can cause side effects such as daytime sleepiness, dizziness, confusion, cognitive impairment, and difficulty urinating, which can be worse 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 your insomnia arises out of a health condition, substance use, pain, or medication, it’s characterized as secondary insomnia.
Risk Factors For insomnia
Insomnia is mostly prevalent in women than in 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 major 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 it difficult to sleep. 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 rhythms act as an internal clock to guide things such as 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 just before bed can disrupt your sleep cycle.
Eating too much in the evening.
It’s okay to have a light snack before bed, 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 serious medical conditions or the use of certain pharmaceutical drugs. Treatment for medical conditions associated with insomnia will temporarily improve night sleep, but insomnia itself may persist after the condition improves and relapses are expected.
Other common causes of insomnia are:
Mental health disorders.
General anxiety disorder (GAD) as well as 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 on a basis of major mental health disorders.
Many prescription drugs can interfere with sleep, such as some 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 drugs, contain caffeine and other stimulants that often interfere with healthy night sleep.
People that suffer from an inability to fall asleep or wakefulness, commonly experience the following symptoms of insomnia:
- Memory or concentration problems
- Sleepiness during daytime
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.
In recent years, there has been an increase in people resorting to natural solutions to deal with their insomnia. 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. There are numerous drug-free remedies that are backed by science.
Home Remedies for Insomnia
There are several home remedies for insomnia that 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. Particularly for people having cancer and insomnia, it can drastically enhance sleeping patterns. Between 7 to 14 days, significant improvement in sleep quality can be noticed.
1-5 mg of melatonin about 30 mins to 2 hours before sleeping is recommended. It would be best if you stuck to minimal dosages as melatonin in higher dosage may carry 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, along with an anti-depressant, is effective in enhancing sleep patterns for people with depression. It can also lower the levels of anxiety, which can further improve sleep quality.
If you want to use this natural remedy, you can consume 20-80 mg of lavender per day. 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 very beneficial in lessening insomnia symptoms and improving sleeping patterns. For women, 300 mg is recommended 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 is capable of taking. 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 there are other symptoms involved, such as headache, dizziness, heart palpitations, forgetfulness, fatigue, lack of energy, nervousness, frequent dreams, as well as 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 the use of common herbs as dietary supplements or in cooking, including in herbal teas, which are easy to drink on a daily basis. 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 the 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 then removed. The patient will receive further treatment 2 to 3 times per week for a total of 12 sessions, which counts as 1 course.
The length of acupuncture treatment for insomnia hinges on the severity of symptoms, a type of sleeplessness, and the age of the insomnia patient. For example, acute insomnia may require one course of treatment over a period of 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: If you have digestive problems along with insomnia, this homeopathic remedy is a potent remedy. It can also effectively mitigate irritability and sleeplessness.
- Lachesis: If your insomnia symptoms are aggravated during or after sleep, Lachesis is prescribed. 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 your quality of sleep, minimize overthinking, and calm down a restless mind.
- Hyoscyamus Niger: For overactive children who are suffering from insomnia due to disturbed sleep from imaginary visions and fears, this homeopathic remedy is an excellent solution.
These are not the only remedies. Homeopathy offers various effective natural remedies for insomnia that are personalized to target the individual’s exact symptoms. Homeopaths also carry out a full 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 treatment for hypnosis
For certain people, hypnosis for insomnia provided exceptional results even in comparison to conventional medication and treatment. By putting you in a trance-like state, you’ll experience focused attention, deep relaxation, and an enhanced openness to suggestions.
Thanks to its ability to enhance responsiveness, this alternative therapy is routinely used to 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 that is often related to insomnia.
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 ven conventional methods fail. You must seek an experienced hypnotist if you want to try out this natural remedy for insomnia.
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 out yoga to help deal with your insomnia, concentrate on breath work 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 going to 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 give adverse effects, which will further deteriorate your sleeping quality. Home and other natural remedies for insomnia as well as other natural treatments for insomnia are a great alternative to dealing with your sleeping disorder.
Since it is natural, it may take a little bit more time to see noticeable results; however, the effects can be long-lasting and are 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.
If 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 by yourself online using our secure scheduling application. Just scan the QR code below, choose the convenient day and time, and come to the office.