There are many reason why people cannot sleep. Sleep disturbances could be caused by stress, adrenal fatigue, digestive upsets and hormonal imbalances – just to name a few. The truth is, insomnia can actually be a symptom of an underlying problem, and it’s not until the underlying problem is addressed that people can truly have their sleep problems disappear.
At Paddington clinic, we aim to get to the bottom of your sleep problem, whether it be an adrenal imbalance, a hormonal imbalance, a nutritional imbalance, a stress response, or something else. We then combine up to three of the best proven therapies to treat sleep disturbances, as well as a complete list of sleep health tips for you to do at home.
Naturopathy and Herbs
There are many lifestyle problems that can be disrupting your sleep and our naturopath will address all these factors with you. Things like diet are important, as well as stress management and healthy sleeping habits like establishing a bedtime routine, making sure you have a high protein snack several hours before bed and avoiding eating right before you sleep, especially high grain or sugar foods.
When the cause of your disrupted sleep is discovered, like stress, adrenal fatigue, digestive upsets, or hormonal imbalances, herbs would then be used to target those weakness. If the sleep problem was related to stress we may prescribe herbs like Valerian or Passion flower or Lemon balm for example. However there may also be underlying digestive upset so herbs to target that would be added like Ginger or Chamomile. Timing of taking the herbs, frequency and dose are all very important for the effectiveness of this approach and needs to be decided and modified for the individual person as needed. Other nutrients are crucial to healthy sleep, especially magnesium, and this is also recommended in any sleep program.
Research has shown that acupuncture is as effective as sleeping medication and more information about that can be found here. In very basic acupuncture terms, the way we can look at insomnia is this: The Yang energy circulates through the Yang areas of your body during the day keeping your mind active. At night, this Yang energy should return to the Yin areas of your body, deeper and lower in your body. If the Yang energy stays in the Yang areas of your brain and eyes, these parts will continue to be energized and prevent you from falling asleep leading toinsomnia. Of course, there are many different types and causes of insomnia in acupuncture terms – from too much heat in the body, to too little blood – which is why we need to feel your pulse and abdomen to assess different reflex areas and organ balance to determine what is going on for you specifically. Some people may get their best night’s sleep right after their acupuncture treatment, but several days later, their insomnia could return. This is in indication that you should receive your acupuncture treatment for insomnia more frequently. It can sometimes take several acupuncture treatments per week, for several weeks to fully resolve chronic insomnia. Other people might respond much more quickly. It depends entirely on factors such as how severe the insomnia is, how long you’ve had it, and what other health factors might be at play. We have found that acupuncture twice weekly for three weeks gives the best, most long-lasting results, and can completely clear up many insomnia cases.
This is one of the best ways to promote healthy sleep, to switch off the sympathetic nervous system and to address the potential causes of sleep disruptions: stress, anxiety, pain, depression or chronic fatigue. Research shows that the benefits of massage include; reduction in anxiety, reduction in pain (immediate and delayed), reduction in depression, reduction in stress hormone (cortisol), reduction in heart rate, reduction in blood pressure, increased circulation, increased relaxation and increased feelings of well being. Obviously, all these benefits greatly serve a healthy sleep life and we always recommend at least one massage in any sleep program.
Remember, lost sleep is lost forever, and the effects of missed sleep disrupt more than just your mood. Call us on 3369 0045 to book an appointment, or if you’d simply like more information on how we can help.