Oh for Deep, Peaceful Sleep.
I long for deep, peaceful sleep with no wake ups just blissfully dreaming the night away in cosy contentment. If my nights improved my days would be wonderful. It seems sleep for me is elusive and returning only slowly.
I watched a sleep program on television last night which focussed on insomnia, either failure to get to sleep or waking in the early hours of the morning and not going back.. The latter is me. I regularly wake at around 3.30 am and have to wait two or three hours before sleep overtakes me again. This can disrupt my days quite a lot and I need to try and get a continuous sleep all night if possible. Apparently it may all be down to our genes and whether we are night owls or morning larks. I'm not sure where benzo withdrawal sits in all this but for most people it certainly disrupts sleep badly. Some ideas conflict with others so obviously you can't do them all but worth trying one or two if sleep is difficult.
These are the ideas that were suggested plus a few more of my own which I've tried over the years......
- Put all technology away at least an hour before bed.
- Make sure your room is warm, dark and quiet to encourage melatonin production.
- Delay going to bed until so tired you can't stay awake any more. This may mean waiting till the early hours of the morning though and cause you to sleep later which is not always an option.
- Turn the clock to the wall so you're not time watching when you wake.
- Eat two kiwi fruits before bed. Not sure this is good for those with gut problems in withdrawal as kiwis are laxative!
- Have a hot bath an hour before bed then immediately cool your body down afterwards.
- Use prebiotic powder stirred into a small drink an hour before bed. This helps release vitamins and minerals into the blood stream apparently. I'm going to try this one.
- Don't eat within four hours of sleep.
- Have a protein snack before bed such as a boiled egg. This helps control blood sugar during the night.
- Listen to white noise and let it send you to sleep.
- Mindfulness - concentrating on your breathing or do a whole body scan meditation. This is my favourite and I always do Mindfulness when awake long hours in the night.
- Take two tablespoons of tart cherry juice before bed or a Montmerency cherry capsule. These contain vitamin C and natural melatonin. They really work for me but only for about two hours.
- Have a warm, milky drink before bed. Supposed to be soothing and calming or you can eat a small yogurt for it's probiotics and calming properties.
- Sleep alone so your partner doesn't disturb you or so you don't worry about disturbing them.
- Get plenty of light exercise during the day if you can but don't exercise within four hours of going to bed.
I would welcome any further ideas ideas to add to this list.