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How I Cured My Insomnia

With 5 Practical Ways

By Lucas RaePublished 2 months ago 8 min read
How I Cured My Insomnia
Photo by Matthew Henry on Unsplash

For years, I battled with insomnia and tried countless remedies that just didn't seem to work.

If you're reading this, chances are you're one of the millions of people who struggle with insomnia.

I dealt with sleepless nights for years, I know how frustrating and overwhelming it can be.

The good news is that you're not alone, and there is hope.

After trying countless remedies and strategies, I've finally discovered the solutions that worked for me.

But they didn't come to me easily.

They came as a result of me looking inside myself, the real causes, and empathetically allowing myself to venture across multiple recommended solutions.

And the best part?

They are natural, drug-free solutions that anyone can try.

As someone who has been in your shoes, I want to share my experience and offer you hope and guidance on your own journey toward better sleep.

1) Start with empathy

If you are to get any close to mitigating your sleep problems, you should start from a position of empathy.

The medical industry fails to address this. They are too busy recommending sleeping pills and antidepressants.

Stress, anxiety, and depression are the most common causes of insomnia.

Trying to treat insomnia without addressing these issues is like focusing on the leaf when the tree is infected from its root.

For me, stress has never been a cause of insomnia. The harder I work, the better my sleep gets.

However, I vividly remember struggling to sleep at times when I get anxious, depressed, or heartbroken.

Until I addressed those issues and talked to myself with empathy and love, nothing else helped.

Not deep sleep music, rain sounds, or avoiding screen light at bedtime.

Sit down and analyze your daily routine.

How do you feel on a day-to-day basis? What makes you stressed out?

Is anything leading you to a state of despair, heartbreak, or straight-up depression?

Address those underlying issues, get help from friends or family, and find someone to vent out with.

2) Optimize your sleeping environment

As you address the underlying cause of your sleeping problems, you should also take pragmatic steps to have the best chances of getting good quality sleep.

I understand how frustrating it can be when you can't get the quality sleep you need, but there are things you can do to improve your sleep environment.

Exposure to light makes it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep, so it's important to create a dark environment in the bedroom.

For years, I normalized sleeping in a room that was never entirely dark, because of the outdoor light that would spill in.

I would be awakened mid-sleep multiple times, and not feel fresh when I woke up in the morning.

All that changed when I installed blackout curtains in my room. They shielded ambient light completely and improved the quality of my sleep.

Loud or sudden noises also disturb your sleep, make sure your bedroom avoids those, if possible.

Furthermore, a slightly cooler temperature and comfortable bedding will help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.

3) Caffeine and Nicotine

Can't do without a blissful cup of coffee or a much-deserved puff of a cigarette?

Your insomnia can't, either.

Caffeine and nicotine are two substances that have a big impact on our sleep quality.

Caffeine is a stimulant that can keep us awake and alert.

So, when we drink coffee, we're essentially preventing our brains from feeling sleepy.

This is why we often reach for a cup of coffee in the morning to help us wake up and start our day.

However, caffeine also stays in our systems for several hours, so drinking it later in the day interferes with your ability to fall asleep at night.

Even if you do manage to fall asleep, the caffeine can still disrupt your sleep by making it more fragmented and less restful.

So, avoid caffeine in the afternoon and evening and limit your overall daily intake to get a good night's sleep.

As for nicotine, it's a stimulant too, and it has similar effects on your sleep.

Smoking or using nicotine products like vape can make it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.

In fact, research has shown that smokers are more likely to have insomnia than non-smokers.

Nicotine can also cause you to wake up during the night and have difficulty falling back asleep, leading to poor sleep quality overall.

Quitting caffeine and nicotine is hard since both are very addictive and habit-forming substances.

Start with limiting them, especially near bedtime, and gradually work your way up.

I was once in a vicious cycle of insomnia.

Drinking coffee and smoking made it difficult for me to fall asleep.

And what did I do? I poured myself a taller cup of coffee, smoked like a maniac, and did my work late into the night.

Something had to change.

I now completely avoid coffee and don't eat processed sugar at all, as much as I consciously can.

As for smoking, I keep relapsing but I'm determined to quit. I've stayed clean for three weeks as I'm writing this.

4) Design a relaxing bedtime routine

Preparing for bedtime is an important step in ensuring that we get a good night's sleep.

How vividly I remember my youthful days when I could fall asleep the minute after lying down (anywhere).

Gone are the days, and if you are to get a good night's sleep as an insomniac, you better devise a ritual.

One of the most important things we can do is to create a relaxing environment that promotes rest and relaxation.

For starters, it's a good idea to avoid bright lights and screen time in the hours leading up to bedtime.

We all know this - the blue light emitted by electronic devices interferes with our natural sleep-wake cycle, making it harder to fall asleep.

Instead, try reading a book, taking a shower, or engaging in some other calming activity to wind down before bed.

It's also a good idea to avoid heavy meals in the hours leading up to bedtime.

Instead, opt for a light snack or a soothing cup of herbal tea to help you relax.

5) The complexities of working out

Contrary to what you might think, not all kinds of workout and fitness journeys will help you doze off peacefully.

Weight loss can affect sleep because losing weight alters your body's metabolism and energy levels, which disrupts your sleep patterns.

If you are consuming fewer calories than you are burning, your body experiences a decrease in energy levels, making it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep.

Additionally, weight loss causes hormonal changes that also affect your sleep patterns.

Similarly, overexertion affects sleep because it leads to physical exhaustion, which makes it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep.

If you push yourself too hard during the day, your body becomes fatigued, making it difficult to relax and unwind at night.

Overexertion can also cause muscle soreness or pain, which can be uncomfortable and keep you awake.

Overexertion isn't any more beneficial than doing the right amount of sets and reps.

Rather, it makes you look like a beginner at the gym. Keep your workout plan in check and do not overdo it.

Exercising too close to bedtime can also affect sleep because it increases your heart rate, body temperature, and energy levels, making it difficult to fall asleep.

Additionally, exercise can stimulate the release of adrenaline and other hormones that can interfere with your sleep.

For these reasons, it's generally recommended to finish exercising at least a few hours before bedtime to give your body time to wind down and prepare for sleep.

I was doing all of these.

On my journey to lose as much weight as possible in a month (not a good way to go at it), I pushed myself in the gym, worked out in the evenings, and basically starved myself of food.

I did lose weight, but couldn't get any sleep at night.

Not the sacrifice you want.

I've now taken a more suitable approach. I eat right, avoid processed foods, and workout correctly.

As a result, I've gained my sleep back, and sleep at least 8 hours a day.

Final Words

If you struggle to sleep, you will have to understand yourself and find out what will make it go away.

It's a process of self-discovery and realization.

Every human being is different, and unlike what the medical industry believes, there is no one-solution-fits-all when it comes to insomnia.

I hope the ways that worked for me will help you as well, but the essence of this article was that you can and should look for ways that work for you, even if it doesn't for someone else.

how towellnessmental healthhealthbody

About the Creator

Lucas Rae





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