A lot of studies confirmed that
most adults have been depriving themselves (oftentimes unnoticed)
of the amounts of sleep needed. Many people suffering from insomnia
can benefit from natural sleep aids to solve
their sleep problems.
You may think that: "Half
an hour short of sleep won't hurt me." Sorry, but it does,
especially if this becomes habitual. Each half or even only
a quarter of an hour lack of sleep each night accumulates in
time. You may think that the lack of sleep the night before
is compensated the next night you get enough sleep. Actually,
What you owe the night before remains in the IOU list which
piles up each time you lack sleep.
Just how much sleep is enough?
Although it varies depending on the person, it is ideal to consider
between seven to eight hours of sleep as enough for the normal
person. Younger people need more sleep than older ones.
Sleep is vital to overall health
and individual functionality, which is why you have to win back
your sleeping time if you lack it. Here are possible sleep robbers
(or habits) that you can kick out to regain your sleeping time.
The habit of sleeping late usually
starts in a subtle way. You hardly notice you're doing it at
first, until it becomes a habit. Identify the cause. If you
can't pinpoint the exact reasons why you sleep late at night,
then chances are, they are small things or chores that are scattered.
Those little time-consuming things you spend on could be trimmed
and if you review them, the minutes (when accumulated) can turn
to an hour or two which you could devote instead to sleeping.
You may not be able to correct
this abruptly; actually it would be better to adjust gradually.
Once you are able to find the time to retire earlier than usual,
it may be difficult to fall asleep at once because of the change
in pattern. Don't worry, this is normal and only in the first
few nights. Once you have adjusted to your new habit, you will
eventually find it easier to fall asleep early.
Stop your dependency on potentially
unhealthy sleep aids like alcohol or sleep inducing pills to
solve your sleep problems. These aids may knock you out of your
senses faster but they can cause frequent wakeful periods thus
interrupting your sleep pattern.
If a concern keeps bothering
you from getting asleep, try this natural sleep aid.
Get a pen (a marker would be better) and a piece of paper (big
enough to fill in you concern) and write your concerns on it.
Lay it on your side table or tape it on the wall. You don't
go to sleep with your robe on, so it's like taking your robe
off before retiring. In the morning, discard the paper. Sounds
trivial but for some, it works.
A phone (landline or mobile)
on the bedside can be very handy particularly in an emergency.
But it can also be downright annoying, especially when it is
set to ring aloud. Take that phone away from your ear. If you
need to keep it, set it on silent mode. Depending on your line
of business or profession, that phone may or may be not be that
important for night calls. Should its presence fall short of
its importance, you're better off without it during the night.
That once in a lifetime call which you classify as an emergency
may not be worth all the nights you are awakened by a wrong
number or a nuisance call. The possibility that someone might
call in the middle of the night when you're asleep results to
an agitated feeling that alters your sleep pattern, keeping
you half asleep subconsciously.
Your brain monitors and maintains
a record of all the hours you owe it in terms of shortage in
sleep. One way or the other, you'll have to pay for it. You
should be thankful it doesn't charge interest or penalties for
late payments. Try your best to pull yourself out of sleep deficits
using natural sleep aids discussed in this
Michael Lee is the author of the highly acclaimed How
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