• Hola Spirited

A Mindful Approach to Insomnia - Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

The most disruptive graphs in the mental health segment is that of sleep. With lifestyle patterns aloof, it is safe to say that one struggles with reaching the optimum sleep range in hours as well as quality. Looking out for insomnia symptoms will help you with the right range of insomnia treatment to cater to your life.

And before you dive into symptoms, learn to understand what causes insomnia. Here is a definite (but not exhaustive) list of causes that create insomniac patterns in your life.

  1. Stress: One of the major factors of insomnia is Stress - One may have stress related to stressful events or traumas in their lives, for instance, death of a loved one or chronic illnesses. Stress may also build up if you have concerns with respect to finances, personal life, work, school, health and / or family - If these thoughts keep your mind up at night, it is liable you'd find if difficult to sleep.

  2. Travel / Work Schedule: When I first started freelancing as a writer, I worked long hours for clients in different time zones - this affected my circadian rhythm and I faced insomnia for the longest amount of time in my work life spanning 7 years to date. Your circadian rhythm is basically an internal clock that helps maintain your sleep and wake cycle, metabolism as well as body temperature. It may possibly be disrupted if you are constantly switching between time zones, have an early or late work shift, jet lagged due to frequent travels or if you frequently change your shifts.

  3. Heavy Eating in the evening: It is said that your evening palate decides the cycle for the rest of the night. So, if you choose to binge onto extra calories or something that's heavy on your tummy, you may end up being awake. This happens since your body feels uncomfortable when you lie down, experiences heart burn or acid reflux too.

  4. Black Screens and Poor Sleep Habits: If you are someone who is surrounded by black screens all through the day. If you work on your laptop/computer/smartphone whole day, watching the screens while eating, using phone when on bed - all of these can be harmful and disrupt your sleep cycle

Additionally, medication, nicotine/alcohol consumption, caffeine consumption, mental health disorders as well as medical conditions and diseases may result in sleep disruption and cause insomnia.

Now that you know the causes of insomnia, learn to read signs and check for these insomnia symptoms -

  1. Do you find it difficult to fall asleep?

  2. Do you frequently wake up during the night

  3. Do you wake up too late or too early?

  4. Do you not feel well-rested after a night's sleep?

  5. Sleepiness and / or daytime tiredness and fatigue?

  6. Irritability / frustration / mood swings

  7. Signs of depression and/or anxiety

  8. Lack of focus / Lack of memory power / Unable to remember enough

  9. Increases accidents or errors while doing a task.

Did you say yes to any or all of these questions? Then it's most likely that you are suffering from a chronic case of Insomnia. And here's how you can overcome it by practicing the following insomnia treatments

It is simple - if you are addicted to coffee and have it more than once a day - then limit the use of coffee on a daily, Instead of 3 cups, have 2, instead of 2, have one - you cannot simply stop having coffee as your body would demand it, but you can slowly fade away from frequent consumption by lowering that frequency.

Encouraging good sleeping habits will also help prevent insomnia and offer you a sound sleep.

  1. Consistency: Ensure that your sleep and wake up hours are same day-to-day, including the weekends. Building a sleeping habit that lets you stay consistent will eventually help you sleep better over a period of time.

  2. Staying Active: It can be so that your body isn't tiring itself enough, so indulging in a good cardio routine, a fun functional exercise, aerobics, walks or even dance/zumba can help promote better sleep health.

  3. Meditate: A chaotic mind can only and only bring in more thoughts, so choose to meditate over light soulful piano music, and simply focus on your breath. While you are at it, you can also choose to indulge in Yoga to promote better mental and physical health of your body.

  4. Avoid Naps: Unless you are truly tired and need to quickly re-energize, it's safe to power naps and day naps should be avoided if you are someone struggling with night sleep cycles.

  5. Check your medication: It may be so that your medication may contribute to insomnia. Visit your general physician to inquire about these medications and if they contribute to a disruptive sleep pattern / insomnia.

  6. Have a night-time ritual: Owning up to a bedtime ritual can help you relax and invite a good sound sleep. Some of these ritual may be taking a warm bath, reading a good gentle book or listening to soft music.

  7. Tidying up: A cluttered home is a doorway to a cluttered mind - so choose to keep your space (where you sleep) tidy and clean at all times.

  8. Masturbate/Have Sex: When you masturbate or have sex, your body orgasms releasing a mix of neurochemicals that can help prepare you for a good night's sleep. Neurochemicals like Oxytocin, Serotonin and Vasopressin along with melatonin(the chemical responsible to help you alter your sleep) are released when you perform sex or orgasm.

Now that you are in the clear as to what causes insomnia, what are the symptoms of insomnia and how you can treat insomnia - use them to your benefit - and let us know when they truly help you :)

We hope this purpose guide helps you in ways more than one.