Insomnia is a very common issue that most of you have experienced at some point in their life. Some may have experienced it for a few nights, whilst in more severe cases, people can’t even recall when was the last time they had a sound sleep. And that can be the cause of a great impact on the whole body.
Insomnia pattern (Do you have the following insomnia pattern?)
If you want to solve your sleeping problem, first of all you need to understand what type of insomnia you have.
Difficulties in falling to sleepDo you toss and turn? Do you find it hard to fall asleep like one to a few hour?
By the time the body falls asleep there is not that many hours left to sleep, the next day the body feels very tired, head is not clear (foggy), poor memory, body feels sluggish.
CausesChinese medicine considers that this type of insomnia is associated with liver and gallbladder disorder. The liver and gallbladder dominate the mind and are affected by stress and emotions, so when you try to go to sleep your mind is unable to switch off. For these cases, you will usually feel very stressed and emotional, you will suffer headaches, stiffness in the neck and shoulder, you will feel bloated, get breast fullness or pain before period and have the following disease: depression, PMS, irritable bowel syndrome, thyroid disorder, panic attacks.
SuggestionsIf you suffer from this type of insomnia, I suggest that you…
– Five hours before you go to bed, avoid drinking tea or coffee. One hour before you go to bed you can have a glass of warm milk (if you are able to drink milk) or you can try camomile tea.
– Two hours before you go to bed, avoid thinking about things which may increase your stress or emotions. One hour before you go to bed go for a gentle walk in the house or outside for ten minutes or listen to soft music for ten minutes with your eyes closed.
– Soaking your feet in warm water one hour before you go to bed. Soaking your feet is a very popular healthy way to help insomnia in China. You can fill a container with warm water, place your feet into the water until the water comes up to your mid-calf. You can do this for at least 20 minutes. If the water begins to cool you can add more warm water. This can help to promote circulation to the legs and feet, tranquilizing and clearing the mind to help you fall asleep quickly.
– You should do a certain amount of exercise outside for at least thirty minutes a day.
– You can try eating certain foods to help balance and strengthen your liver and gallbladder, such as; oranges, banana, celery, carrots, camomile tea, peppermint tea.
Waking up often during the night
CausesThis type of insomnia is quite often associated with kidney and heart disorder. People who have this issue may experience the following symptoms; frequent urination at night time, lower back pain, lowered libido, dry skin, palpitations, puffy legs and ankles, poor memory, lack of energy, hot or thirsty in the evening. Some women may suffer from menopause at the same time.
Our suggestionsa) Avoid drinking large amounts of fluid after dinner and before you go to bed.
b) Eat certain foods which can balance and strengthen the heart such as; goji berries, lotus seeds, beef bone soup c) If you have any of the symptoms above, you should fix these also whilst you are undergoing treatment for insomnia.
Waking up earlyIn my clinic many of my clients complain that they wake up too early, around 4am. This occurs more often to men over the age of 40 years. After waking they are unable to fall back to sleep but still feel very tired. This type of insomnia disrupts the energy for the whole day.
CausesChinese medicine considers that this type of insomnia is caused by kidney yin and yang disorder (weakness). This people may experience the following symptoms; lethargy, lower back, knee or ankle stiffness or pain, lowered libido, impotence, poor memory, early onset of grey hair.
Suggestionsa) Eat more foods that can benefit the kidneys such as; walnuts, prawns, soya beans, black kidney beans, black sesame seeds, venison, lamb, beef, scallops, goji berries.
b) Look after your lower back circulation. You should fix the symptoms above whilst you are undergoing treatment for insomnia.
Other types of insomniaThere are many other issues which may disturb sleep such as severe dreams, sleep talking/walking.
Acupuncture can help with insomnia
Thanks to acupuncture, diet and lifestyle advise.