14 WAYS TO IMPROVE SLEEP

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by suzetal, Aug 12, 2006.

  1. suzetal

    suzetal New Member

    Again I found something that might help some of us.Worth a try.I started a sleep journal last night.I really hope I find a pattern.

    Sleep disturbance or insomnia is not uncommon in women starting at midlife. While this may be due to a physical concern, usually it's not. Let's discuss some things you can do NOW to improve your sleep.

    * Good sleep is a component of good health. Things that you do for good health are essential and will directly impact your quality of sleep. This means eating a healthy diet, regular exercise and good daily multivitamin/mineral supplements.

    * A healthy diet that is high in phytoestrogens such as fruits and vegetables may help if the cause of your sleep disturbance happens to be related to being postmenopausal. Apples, carrots, cherries, green beans, oats, peas, potatoes, soybeans and sprouts - just to mention a few!

    * Avoid stimulating agents such as nicotine and caffeine -- that includes coffee, tea, soft drinks, and chocolate. Even one cup of coffee in the morning can affect sleep quality hours later. We, as women, tend to metabolize caffeine much slower than men. If you smoke or chew tobacco quit. Short of that, avoid smoking/chewing within a few hours of going to bed.

    * Sleep in a dark room. (How bright is your illuminated clock?)

    * Develop a sleep routine: going to bed at the same time; rituals such as having a cup of relaxing tea and then washing up, and the like.

    * Avoid taking naps.

    * Is your sleeping space comfortable? Look at light, noise and temperature. How about your bed? Is it too firm or too soft?

    * Avoid late night heavy meals. However, a light snack at bedtime may be helpful.

    * Try relaxation -- mediate, take a bath, listen to soft music, read a gentle book, get a massage.

    * Avoid the news and other violent or emotional stimulation before bed! It's hardly relaxing!

    * Avoid alcohol late in the day. It can cause waking in the night and impairs sleep quality.

    * Limit your bed activities -- avoid getting used to things like reading or sewing in bed.

    * If you cannot sleep, get up and do something until you can sleep.

    * If worries are keeping you awake, try journaling -- it may provide a way for you to release the worry onto paper and thus relax and sleep.

    There are natural supplements that can be tried. If you are a milk drinker, consider having a glass of warm milk. Milk when it is warm releases tryptophan, the same substance that was in that Thanksgiving turkey that had you napping. On the other hand, I recently read that warm milk also has substances that can keep you awake. Let your own body tell you what it likes about milk.

    Other suggestions include valerian root, melatonin, passion flower and of course the chamomile, catnip, anise or fennel teas. Some companies package teas in their own formulations for sleep, such as "Sleepy Time". Your local herbalist or health food store may also be able to give you suggestions. As with anything else, the key to try different things and see what you respond to.

    If none of these suggestions work, I would recommend the following. First of all, see your see your health care provider to ensure there is nothing physical that needs to be attended to. Keep a sleep diary for 3 months with the goal to see if there is some sort of pattern. Keep track of the time you go to bed, awaken, how often you are awake and/or up at night. Are you tired when you awaken in the morning? What time are you getting up? Is there something that is on your mind? Does any of this correlate with your cycles (if you still have them).

    Use of sleeping medication is something that can sometimes be used to get your body back on track, but it's not for long term use, and should only be used when other remedies have been ineffective.

    Sue


  2. Scapper

    Scapper New Member

    Thanks for the sleep post.

    Every time someone posts regarding sleep, I always see how keeping the same routine helps. I fall short on this one, but I'll keep trying :)
  3. tata1580

    tata1580 New Member

    I am bumping for others!!

    Tami
  4. KateMac329

    KateMac329 New Member

    Hello!

    Thank you so much for taking the time to write this down for everyone! I saw this earlier this afternoon but got busy with little bean (my son) and couldn't reply.

    But now I have a few minutes and wanted to say thank you! I know sometimes it feels like people aren't interested in the things that can help them but some of us are. Now that statement was not made to offend anyone it's just I have been there.

    I have taken the time to write informative posts or replies only to get passed up for other posts. For instance I made two posts in the same day. One was about a vitamin advisor that Dr. Weil was doing and the other was about which celebrity do you look like.

    LOL I got I think two replies on the vitamin post and like forty on the celebrity post! LOL

    Sometimes it is just fun to take our minds off of important stuff or to give our minds a break from information overload.

    I also wanted to share something with you that I found the other day while I was reading. I am CONSTANTLY reading and researching. I put it down for awhile but am back at it whenever I have a spare minute. If I am not on here then I am reading, researching or crafting. LOL

    Okay here is what I found:


    Crud I have to come back. Hubby is telling me it is dinner time and telling me NOW! LOL I will come back! Promise!

    ((HUGS))

    kate
  5. Jeanne-in-Canada

    Jeanne-in-Canada New Member


    I've been guilty of just paying lip service to it in the past, but I've found a few routines for myself that have gotten me off the sometimes need for sleep meds.

    One thing I have to do is wind down. I'm not the kind of person who could ever just dose off in seconds. I hate and envy people like that (my fiance). I avoid thinking or planning near bed, my mind won't stop. I force myself to wait for the day.

    the worst thing I can do is do a flurry of nighttime rituals that have to be done and try to immediately go to bed after. Things like brush my teeth, close curtains/windows, or other last minute things. I get taht all done ahead of time and just lie down and watch tv to distract myself and get sleepy. I wait till i'm good and sleepy to go bed too, or I know I'll toss and turn if i try and force it. I'm naturally a night owl so I don't try and change that. I don't have to get up in the morning, so no need, I go w/ my rhythms.

    I've also found yogurt is better than milk to make me mellow. I think yogurt is higher in tryptophan. An alkalizing agent can make me very mellow and sleepy too. I use a more balanced blend of alkalizing minerals, but baking soda works too. Make sure you alkalize on an empty stomache, because you can't digest for about a half hour after, it neutralizes acid, which makes you feel very peaceful, but that starts w/ your stomache acid.


    jeanne
  6. Jeanne-in-Canada

    Jeanne-in-Canada New Member

  7. suzetal

    suzetal New Member

    Ill have to try the yogurt.I never have at night.

    I love the stuff so Ill give it try tonight.

    Thanks
    Hugs>>>>>>Sue
    PS:That rymes LOL
  8. suzetal

    suzetal New Member

    I know what you mean about no answers.

    You know it does not bother me.I figure some are reading the post but may not feel well enough to comment.

    Thanks Kate.

    HUGS>>>>>>>>>>Sue