Home remedy for insomnia includes homeopathy, morning walks, avoiding stress, aromatic baths, chamomile tea, jasmine or lavender oils, or calming music for a good nightÂ’s sleep.
Insomnia is a major sleep disorder, whose home remedy and treatment includes valerian, lavender oil and jasmine oil, relaxation techniques, exercise and other means. Insomnia is characterized by “the presence of long sleep latency, frequent nocturnal awakenings, or prolonged periods of wakefulness during the sleep period or even frequent transient arousals.” Insomnia, in a nutshell, is the difficulty of falling or staying asleep. If sleep is achieved, it is non-restorative.
Insomnia Causes and Reasons for Sleeplessness
“Age and gender are the most clearly identified demographic risk factors, with an increased prevalence in women and older adults,” Thomas Roth, PhD, writes in his article Insomnia: Definition, Prevalence, Etiology, and Consequences.
Other common causes of insomnia include emotional stress and depression, pain or illness, medications – like decongestants, diuretics, some anti-depressants, steroids and beta-blockers – eating a heavy meal or drinking caffeinated drinks or alcohol near bedtime, or simply sleeping in an unfamiliar bed.
Insomnia Home Remedy and Treatments for Better Sleep
Here is a list of home remedy and treatment for insomnia:
• Food sources of tryptophan – tryptophan is an amino acid the body converts to serotonin – the brain chemical that helps us fall asleep. Foods rich in tryptophan include turkey, chicken, and bananas. Milk contains tryptophan. Drink warm milk with a spoonful of honey or a sprinkling of cinnamon, which has mild sedative properties.
• Carbohydrates – facilitate tryptophan’s entry into the brain. But avoid large dinners, because digestion of large meals can take 3 to 4 hours, which will interfere with sleep.
• Herbs – like valerian helps in falling asleep faster. A word of caution: valerian smells terrible, so avoid making it a tea. Opt, instead, for valerian root capsules or tablets. Passionflower tea also helps as a mild sedative. Supplements can include both valerian and passionflower. Chamomile tea calms the nervous system and leads to a restful sleep.
• Oils – lavender is a mild tranquilizer. Dilute lavender oil in a carrier oil (5 drops per 10 ml) and dab a little onto the temple and forehead before sleeping. Jasmine essential oil is also helpful. Put a drop of jasmine oil on each wrist before bedtime. Studies discovered that people who sleep in jasmine-scented rooms sleep more peacefully.
• Aromatic bath – add 5 drops of lavender oil and 3 drops of ylang-ylang oil to warm water and enjoy their calming benefits, which lead to a restful sleep.
• Homeopathy – nux vomica is one of the best homeopathic medicines for insomnia. Coffea helps if the problem is falling asleep, in the first place. Calcarea carbonica is for people who wake up in a cold sweat from frequent bad dreams.
• Adopt a rigid sleep routine – do not oversleep. Wake up at the same time each day, no matter how little sleep you had the night before.
• Try listening to calming, hypnotic music.
• Relaxation exercises – before going to sleep, like deep and rhythmic breathing and stretching.
• Numb the mind with repetition – there is some truth to the old wives’ tale of “counting sheep” to help fall asleep.
• Make your bed, pillows and room fresh, clean and comfortable. Be sure that the pillow supports the neck.
• Avoid stress – if possible, do not go to bed with a lot of worries. Resolve issues during waking time.
• Walking – outdoors every morning after waking up. It is a form of exercise. Natural light sends the signal to the body that it’s time to be awake. Habitual body clock reset – at the right time – results in better sleep.
Going to see a sleep specialist is the last option. Much less desirable are sleeping pills and all sorts of sleeping aids outside of natural means. If stress related to work seems the prime culprit for insomnia, take a vacation. Give yourself some time with family and loved ones and friends. Usually, the problems of sleeping go as soon as psychological and emotional problems are soothed or smoothed out.
Thomas Roth, PhD. “Insomnia: Definition, Prevalence, Etiology, and Consequences” Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. American Academy of Sleep Medicine. 2007 (Accessed 09/18/2010)
1801 Home Remedies: Trustworthy Treatments for Everyday Health Problems. Reader’s Digest. Australia. 2007. 472 pages.
Foods that Harm, Foods that Heal: An A to Z Guide to Safe and Healthy Eating. The Reader’s Digest. 2004, Montreal, Canada. 416 pages. Hardbound.
Photo by Alyssa L. Miller at Flickr.com
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for educational purposes only and should not be used for diagnosis or to guide treatment without the opinion of a health professional. Any reader who is concerned about his or her health should contact a doctor for advice.