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What To Do When You Can’t Sleep

May 15, 2020
woman holding her head because she can't sleep

Are you having trouble going to sleep? Have you ever laid on your bed for longer than an hour, trying to sleep and failed? In a study conducted by the Consumer Report, 68% of Americans have trouble sleeping at least once a week and 27% have trouble sleeping most nights. 

Why can’t I sleep?

A good night’s sleep requires a comfortable bed, a silent & most preferably dark room and of course a tired person. But as it turns out, even people that meet these requirements have trouble sleeping. So why are people having so much trouble sleeping?

Well, the reasons can be endless. Stress and anxiety are the most common problems people encounter when they want to go to sleep. Lack of sleep only helps worsen these conditions and therefore, people find themselves in a vicious cycle.

According to Dr. David Jockers the 10 causes of bad sleep

  • Poor Sleep Schedule 
  • Bad Nutrition and Blood Sugar Imbalances 
  • Nutrient Deficiencies 
  • LED Light Exposure 
  • Stress 
  • Chronic Pain 
  • Sleep Apnea 
  • Hiatal Hernia and Heart Palpitations 
  • Overactive Thyroid Activity 
  • Gut Infections 

How long does it take to fall asleep & how long should I sleep?

It is normal to take 10 to 20 minutes for you to fall asleep once you get into bad and close your eyes. If it takes you longer, your body is trying to tell you something. Continue reading the article to find out how to solve this issue.

People have different ideas on how long you should sleep. Some say that adults should sleep for 7 hours, some say 9. In general, if you’re getting 7-9 hours of sleep you should be good. However, some people need more hours and some need less sleep. A general rule of thumb is that you should sleep for as long as it takes you to wake up feeling rested. That is why we sleep at the end of the day.

woman having a good night sleep

Exercises for sleep

How does exercise cause a good nights sleep

The first thing that comes to my mind when I can’t sleep is the thought “I’m not tired enough”. A lot of people that maybe have a desk job or are not moving a lot during the day may experience a lack of sleep. Although working at a desk can seem to some people as easy, the body actually needs energy for brain activity, concentration, and solving problems. So, even though you don’t get tired physically, mentally you can be drained. 

Exercise can be a great way to tire your body to the level that you do not have trouble falling asleep. If you have tried these and they don’t work for you please consult with your doctor.

Workout before sleep

It is important to mention that when you are trying to wind down and relax, you have to be careful not to push your body with a hardcore workout. The exercises that you do should all come naturally to you and you should feel comfortable. Some people can go on and simply do some stretches but if that doesn’t do it for you, here are some exercises that sit perfectly between relaxation and moving. 

  • Leg extension
  • Glute bridge
  • Side leg raises
  • Clamshells

Yoga poses for better sleep

Yoga is a great solution for better sleep. Not only does it get you moving and set your tire you out the perfect amount but it also helps you calm your mind and come into a state of relaxation. I have heard many cases where people have fallen asleep even during yoga, is Shavasana.

  • Hero pose
  • Childs Pose
  • Upward dog
  • Butterfly fold
  • Spine twist
  • Knee to chest

Breathing exercise for sleep – the 4-7-8 Breathing Routine

Breathing exercises have been around for a while and they are a great way to wind down and trick your body into sleeping. The most popular one and perhaps the most straightforward breathing exercise is the 4-7-8 breathing routine. This routine has been created by Dr. Andrew Weil and it helps the body heal by fueling it with oxygen.

To perform this breathing exercise follow these instructions:

  • Part your lips gradually.
  • Exhale fully and release all the air from your lungs and release your body of any tension you might feel.
  • Next, press your lips together and inhale silently and slowly with your nose for 4 seconds.
  • Hold your breath for 7 seconds.
  • Release your breath for 8 seconds and if you hear a “whooshing” you are doing it correctly.
  • If you are a beginner repeat the exercise 4 times. Once you get used to it repeat for 8 times.

*If you are having continuous sleeping problems please consult your physician or doctor.

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