Six tips for good dreams

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There are many peo­ple for whom a calm, sound sleep is a lux­u­ry. They strug­gle with insom­nia for half the night, feel like zom­bies in the morn­ing, and believe that only sleep­ing pills can help them fall asleep faster.

“The prob­lem is that many peo­ple think that sleep can­not be con­trolled, unlike hunger, thirst and oth­er things that the human body needs to sur­vive,” says W. Chris Win­ter, MD, author of Why Your Sleep Is Ruined, and how to fix it.

The root cause of insom­nia is often so elu­sive that peo­ple give it too much impor­tance and spend an unfor­giv­able amount of effort look­ing for it. Med­i­ta­tion, warm socks and sim­ple tips from the pop­u­lar med­ical por­tal Healthy­in­fo will help you cope with the prob­lem.

Don’t try your best to get sleep

Don't try your best to get sleep

In life, it often hap­pens like this: a per­son gets what he longs for (for exam­ple, to find his “half”), exact­ly at the moment when he stops car­ing about the ful­fill­ment of his dream. The same thing hap­pens with falling asleep, accord­ing to Win­ter. The more a per­son tries to sleep, the more rest­less it becomes, “lur­ing” insom­nia.

Remind your­self that sleep is a bod­i­ly func­tion, like hunger. A per­son can dili­gent­ly fol­low the dai­ly rou­tine, go to bed at the same time, have enough phys­i­cal activ­i­ty, avoid dis­trac­tions that pro­voke wake­ful­ness … But at the same time, his body sim­ply is not ready to fall asleep due to the fact that his mind is in ten­sion, due to inter­nal anx­i­ety about pos­si­ble insom­nia.

Advice

Stop try­ing! Relax and you’ll be fine.

Turn off the lights ahead of time

Some peo­ple with chron­ic insom­nia are sur­prised to find that they some­times sleep peace­ful­ly out­side their own home or apart­ment. These days they are tired, fall asleep when the sun goes down, and wake up with the sun­rise. They may not even need an alarm to do this.

The phe­nom­e­non is explained by the fact that the main source of light was the sun, and the inter­nal clock of the human body was syn­chro­nized with the nat­ur­al cycles of day and night.

Win­ter explains it this way: “Because the sun goes down very slow­ly, it sets off a nat­ur­al and very pow­er­ful trig­ger for the secre­tion of mela­tonin (the hor­mone that induces sleep).”

Nor­mal­ly, mela­tonin lev­els should rise a cou­ple of hours before it’s time to fall asleep, and decrease in the morn­ing.

But a new study by researchers from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Col­orado has found that in today’s world filled with arti­fi­cial light from var­i­ous devices, hor­mone lev­els tend to drop only some time after a per­son wakes up and do not rise with the sun­set, as it should be. The researchers came to some inter­est­ing con­clu­sions:

    human biological clocks adapt to seasonal changes in the natural day-night cycle;
    living in a modern environment, under electric lighting, changes a person’s circadian clock;
    weekends spent in nature (hiking, vacation home, camping) can restore natural circadian rhythms and help with sleep problems.

Sci­en­tists have found that a per­son can restart his inter­nal “clock­work”. To get the desired effect, dim the lights and espe­cial­ly avoid the blue light from elec­tri­cal appli­ances at least an hour before going to bed.

Advice

Cur­tain the win­dows in advance, be con­tent with night lights, turn off the TV, lap­top, remove the glow­ing clock, smart­phone and all elec­tron­ic gad­gets from the bed­room.

Take a hot bath

Take a hot bath

When a per­son falls asleep, the lev­el of stress hor­mones in his body drops. The same thing hap­pens after a hot bath or show­er: the body begins to cool down quick­ly, which paci­fies the pro­duc­tion of cor­ti­sol and caus­es drowsi­ness. The sim­ple pro­ce­dure is real­ly relax­ing.

Tips

    We recommend taking water procedures at a water temperature of at least 27 ° C.
    You should bathe half an hour before the moment when you are supposed to go to bed.

Put on warm socks

Soft and warm socks are not only an attribute of home com­fort. They will warm the legs in bed, help to achieve the expan­sion of blood ves­sels on the skin of the feet, which will lead to a redis­tri­b­u­tion of heat from the rest of the body and a sig­nal to the brain that it is time to sleep.

Recent stud­ies have shown that the degree of expan­sion of blood ves­sels in the skin of the extrem­i­ties, fol­lowed by an increase in heat loss in them, is the best phys­i­o­log­i­cal mech­a­nism that trig­gers rapid sleep.

Advice

Socks must be free.

Switch consciousness

A per­son can dis­tract him­self from think­ing about how much he wants to sleep with the help of “mind games”. It is nec­es­sary to occu­py the mind with some­thing, forc­ing the brain to focus on solv­ing oth­er prob­lems.

Advice

Count­ing sheep is not the only way to switch the mind. Instead of this bor­ing activ­i­ty, plan your dream vaca­tion in your own head. Fan­ta­size about Ryan Gosling prepar­ing a roman­tic din­ner in a yacht cab­in or a night out on a desert island with Angeli­na Jolie.

Take up meditation

Take up meditation

Research shows that med­i­ta­tion, which requires you to focus on your breath and the present moment, can help with insom­nia by low­er­ing your stress lev­els and keep­ing you from think­ing about the mis­for­tunes that may come in the future.

For exam­ple, a group of sci­en­tists from the Uni­ver­si­ty of South­ern Cal­i­for­nia (Los Ange­les, USA) con­duct­ed a ran­dom­ized study and con­clud­ed that the prac­tice of mind­ful­ness helps old­er peo­ple restore nor­mal sleep.

Giv­en that stan­dard­ized spir­i­tu­al exer­cise pro­grams are avail­able to many, med­i­ta­tion train­ing can be rec­om­mend­ed for mass use. But spir­i­tu­al prac­tice will not solve the prob­lem of falling asleep instant­ly. Just like it’s impos­si­ble to learn how to play the gui­tar right before going on stage.

Advice

In order for med­i­ta­tion to help restore rest­ful sleep, it must be prac­ticed reg­u­lar­ly. It takes some time to get the desired effect.

By Yraa

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