Over 30% of the global population suffers from insomnia at some time in their lives. The sleepless nights often result from conveniences you might not suspect of keeping you up at night. Light pollution, chaotic work schedules, and even air conditioning can destroy the body’s circadian rhythms, resulting in poor sleep quality or complete sleeplessness. The good news is: knowing the causes provides clues about how to overcome insomnia.
Sleep Hygiene and Your Environment
Sleep hygiene refers to a set of routines that keep your nights restful. For example,
- Limit naps to half an hour
- Put the coffee away at 4:00pm (or earlier; your mileage may vary)
- Keep a healthy work schedule
- Use your bed for sleep alone (as opposed to eating or watching TV)
- Practice sleep hygiene to train your body to return to its correct rhythms.
Overcoming a Modern World
The body releases sleep-inducing hormones as the weather becomes cooler and the light fades away. Keeping your lighting dim and setting your air conditioning slightly lower as the night sets in could deepen sleep. Turn off the light and noise of glowing screens, too.
Perfect sleep hygiene and environmental controls can achieve little if you’re struggling with conditions like chronic pain, heart disease, and asthma. The first step is an obvious one: Put together a skilled medical team and don’t stop searching out an effective treatment plan.
Caffeine, diet pills, decongestants, energy drinks, and some herbs can be potent stimulants, and many of them are long acting. Speak to your doctor about alternative treatments and stay away from botanicals containing ma huang and ginseng. Trading in your decongestants for nasal sprays and antihistamines may cure insomnia entirely.
Insomnia can induce insulin resistance, raise your chances of developing heart disease, and cause serious accidents. It’s critical to your health and deserves to be taken seriously.
If you’re waking up with aches and pains, or not feeling rested, a new mattress might be in order. Your bed should lull you to sleep and work with your body to help you wake up refreshed.