Insomnia is the inability to get the amount of sleep you need to wake up feeling rested and refreshed. Common Signs of insomnia are:
- Difficulty falling asleep or getting back to sleep
- Waking up frequently during the night
- Sleep feels light, fragmented, or exhausting
- A need to take something in order to get to sleep
- Sleepiness and low energy during the day
Why do you need to sleep?
Sleep is an essential component of human behaviour. Some reasons are:
- To rest from the massive activity going on within you when you are awake
- To aid bodily healing
- To allow a filing process to occur from the day
- To allow you to dream where your subconscious mind can come out to play
What happens when you sleep?
We have a 90 – 110 minute cycle which is made up of:
Stage 1 – Half wake and half sleep. We are twitchy as our muscles begin to relax.
Stage 2 – After about 10 minutes we enter into this stage for about 20 minutes. Heart rate and breathing slows down.
Stage 3 – Brain waves slow down as we enter deep sleep. Sleep walking can occur in this stage.
Stage 4 – The deepest stage of sleep. Rhythmic breathing and limited muscle activity.
Stage 5 – Dream sleep. Rapid Eye Movement (REM) occurs. The brain becomes very active beginning about 70 – 90 minutes after we fall asleep. We have vivid dreams and then …
The whole cycle begins again.
These tend to be Hypnotics (medication that causes sleep or partial loss of consciousness) such as Zopiclone. They are seen as a temporary form of treatment that “knocks you out”, but they don’t get to the roots of the problem or help you be in charge of your sleep patterns.
Long term usage can lead to drug abuse, dependency and the development of tolerance for the medication, thus it “stops working”. In our experience abuse of these drugs can lead to greater levels of worry and anxiety as well!
How can you help yourself?
- The first major thing you can do is teach yourself relaxation. We recommend that you find some easy listening relaxation tapes and you play them every night. If you can relax your body and your mind, then sleep will naturally occur. Once your body has drifted off, then so will you. We have our own MP3 ready to download now.
- With your busy life and the stress of not being able to sleep, it can be quite overwhelming. So you can learn some techniques that assist you in putting your stresses to bed, thus clearing your mind and being ready for sleep. It’s likely that there is nothing you can do to sort out the everyday stresses during night time and rest will in fact help you be prepared to tackle the next day more creatively and productively. So learning how to put your stresses somewhere else can be really helpful. Like a box, or in a draw at the office. There is a download here that can help you learn how to do this.
- Start a sleep diary and explore how things are at the moment. There is so much that we don’t pay attention too that a diary can help make you more aware of and thus work out what can make a difference. You can do some experiments a long the way and log what difference they make. So for example, change the time you go to bed or what you do when you wake up and see what happens in the quality of sleep that you get.
- You can also complete a self help course that gives you a personal programme for you to work through to empower your ability to allow sleep to occur.
- Our 3 session Self Help programme is here for you to download for only £9.99. Click the image to order your course and begin the change the way you sleep instantly.
You can also book a session with us where we can begin to re-train your mind to switch off and get a good sleep pattern working again.
Simply call us on 01206 824579 or contact us here.