Sleep...What’s That?  Tips and Techniques to Ease Insomnia | This is Jthomp
 

Sleep…What’s That?  Tips and Techniques to Ease Insomnia

| Posted in Physical Well-Being

Have you been in any of these positions?

I can’t sleep

I didn’t sleep

I hardly slept

I can’t stay asleep

Tips and Methods to Ease Insomnia

Insomnia is a big problem for me. Some days I don’t sleep at all. Some nights it’s only a couple of hours of sleep. Some nights I may sleep but it’s not a restful sleep.

I have used a lot of different methods to try to ease insomnia, get to sleep earlier, stay asleep longer, and have a more restful sleep. I try to use more natural means of getting and staying asleep because I don’t like the way sleeping pills make me feel, or the weird dreams that I sometimes when taking them. If I do use a sleeping aid, its not a prescription, its a Unisom or Tylenol PM or Aleve PM if I have a headache. In this post I  will give you some non medication related techniques to try to ease your insomnia.

Melatonin

You may or may not consider melatonin a medication.  You can find melatonin in pill, liquid or gummy form at most places that sell vitamins.  I use melatonin with my children upon recommendation from our pediatrician. A lot of people use melatonin because it’s considered to be a supplement to a substance made by your body.  Melatonin is a hormone to gets your body ready to sleep. The problem with taking a melatonin supplement is that your body can develop a tolerance to it so you might lose some of the effectiveness.  To avoid this you don’t want to use it every night. If you’ve been using it for a while and you noticed that you’re becoming more more tolerant to its effects, you might want to give your body a break for a couple weeks or months and then come back to using it.

 

Weighted Blanket

One big thing that has helped me lately is a weighted blanket. I have generalized anxiety which sometimes causes my thoughts to race when I am trying to fall asleep which causes me to stay awake a lot longer than I want to; even if I’m tired and ready for bed. Often, my body just feels restless and it’s hard to settle down which leads to difficulty getting to sleep.  A weighted blanket causes deep pressure touch stimulation. This type of stimulation is relaxing and calming and can help your body produce serotonin; which is a neurotransmitter that regulates mood, digestion, sleep, social behavior, memory, among other things. I experienced immediate results using the weighted blanket.

I ordered this weighted blanket from Amazon  

YnM Weighted Blanket (17 lbs for 160 lbs individual, 60”x80”), Fall Asleep Faster and Stay Asleep Longer, 100% Breathable Cotton for Comfort

It is suggested that you get a weight that is about 10% of your body weight.

Here are some comparable blankets of varying weight from Amazon.  (ThisIsJthomp is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com)

15 pound
YnM Weighted Blanket (15 lbs for 140 lbs individual, 60”x80”), Various Sizes Gravity Blanket for Children and Adults, Great Sleep Therapy for People with Anxiety, Autism, ADHD, Insomnia or Stress

5 pound
YnM Weighted Blanket (5 lbs for 40lbs individua,36”x48”), Various Sizes Gravity Blanket for Children and Adults, Great Sleep Therapy for People with Anxiety, Autism, ADHD, Insomnia or Stress

20 pound
YnM Weighted Blanket (20 lbs for 190 lbs individual, 60”x80”), Various Sizes Gravity Blanket for Children and Adults, Great Sleep Therapy for People with Anxiety, Autism, ADHD, Insomnia or Stress

If a store-bought weighted blanket is too pricey for you, and you are crafty, you could make your own.  Here is a YouTube video how-to on making your own weighted blanket

Here is an article that details why weighted blankets work.

Weighted Blanket help Insomnia and Anxiety

 

Specific Evening Routine

So another method to help ease insomnia is coming up with an evening routine to help your body and your mind recognize that it’s time to wind down and get ready for bed.  This routine should involve some sort of quiet activity. You can do a warm shower or bath, reading, or listening to quiet music. There are researchers that say the extraneous light from your cell phone can cause your brain to stay more alert and affect your ability to fall asleep.  Because of this it is recommended for you to not use your cellphone while trying to go to sleep. This can impact you if you were going to use your phone for reading material or for listening to quiet music. You can dim the screen brightness for reading, or tuck your phone out of sight if you were going to listen to music.

 

Sleep Inducing Music 

There are a lot of articles of the web about the use of 432 Hz as a frequency to have music tuned to.  It is said that this is the frequency that the earth resonates at. Here is an article to explains this concept

Support for 432 Hz

Here is an article that presents some facts and falsehoods about the frequency.

Separating Falsehood and Facts of 432 Hz

Whatever you think about the use of this frequency; there are several videos on YouTube that offer several hours of relaxing music set to this frequency.  

The first time I listen to one of these I was asleep in less than 10 minutes and I sleep all night, waking up well-rested.  

 

Here are a couple of links to these types of videos.  

 

If you are using Youtube for relaxation music and sound, be sure that the autoplay feature is turned off for your videos.  This will prevent you from cycling through other videos when you are asleep. Also make sure that your phone is plugged in, if you are using it, so that you don’t inadvertently kill your battery.

 digital alarm clock time

Vary your Methods and Keep a Log

Be sure to vary your methods to you use to ease your insomnia.  A lot of times these techniques can lose their effectiveness of you use them all the time.  It’s handy to a few thing in your repertoire that you can go to without wearing out your one good technique.  It’s hard when you know that something works to not use it all the time but it’s even more frustrating when you have that tried-and-true method that works and then one day it doesn’t work anymore.  By varying your techniques you might get a little bit more longevity out of a method.

 

I am including for you a chart to help you keep track of the methods and techniques that you are trying out.  It will be a lot easy to refer to your chart when varying your methods and you will not have to try to remember if a video or technique worked for you or not.  

Insomnia technique log PDF

Insomnia technique log Google Doc

Insomnia technique log Word Doc

Comment with your Tips

What methods and techniques have you used to get to sleep. Share them in the comments.  I will compile everyone’s tips and techniques into one document and share that with the email group so that everyone can see what other methods have been suggested and maybe get some new techniques to try.  If you are not sign-up to receive emails you can find the sign-up box in the right hand column of this page.

 

I want to Sleep!  Methods to ease insomnia

 


11 thoughts on “Sleep…What’s That?  Tips and Techniques to Ease Insomnia”

  1. I constantly struggle with falling asleep. I have found some nightly meditation and breathing exercises help to calm my mind and then I’m able to fall asleep easier.

  2. I’ve never heard of a weighted blanket it sounds interesting, insomnia can be though to deal with and you found great ways to work with it.

  3. Mimi says:

    I started having insomnia since 2013 but I take melatonin every night and it still works wonders for me, need to check the weighted blanket and it sounds interesting

  4. Jordan says:

    Ooh, now I really want to try a weighted blanket!! That sounds amazing!

  5. Ginger says:

    I struggle with insomnia too, it stinks! I have found that if I get out of bed as soon as I wake up and move around then I go back to sleep faster than if I lay there trying to go back to sleep. While it’s not ideal I’d rather lose 1-2 hours of sleep than 3-4+. I’ve been thinking of trying a weighed blanket tho because I’ve heard a lot about them recently.

  6. Teri says:

    This is awesome-sauce! I’ve never heard of a weighted blanket! What a great new resource to try. I would think it was make me feel so comforted like when my mom used to layer blankets on me as a kid.

  7. Brandy Nicole says:

    Great tips! I’ve found a good magnesium supplement before bed to be helpful. Also meditation 🙂

  8. sruszkowski says:

    I’ve been wondering about weighted blankets lately. I always fall asleep faster if I am wrapped tight in my blanket. That’s great but it can get hot in the summer. So, I wonder about the weight blanket instead.

  9. I have no idea why but melatonin doesn’t work for me, maybe because I have anxiety? I looove my weighted blanket, it’s so relaxing. I’ll have to check out the music feature because I sleep with noise and cutting out my fan in winter would be nice.

  10. perfectingtruth101 says:

    I have battled insomnia since I was 17 (I am now 44). I found your tips interested. I had not heard of weighted blankets before. I had just determined that my next thing to try is setting (and sticking to) a specific routine; I see that is listed here. I am determined to find a method that works, so I appreciate your article.

  11. Haha! I always have trouble falling asleep. Glad I came across your post 🙂

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