Insomnia: Treat It Naturally

Do you toss and turn at night? Do you wake up each morning feeling more tired than you were the night before? If you don’t feel refreshed in the morning, then you are likely not getting enough sleep at night and should consider why.

What is Insomnia?

Although it’s common to have the occasional sleepless night, insomnia is the lack of sleep on a regular basis. Chronic insomnia can itself be a symptom of another condition, such as depression, heart disease, sleep apnea, lung disease, hot flashes, or diabetes, so it’s important to see a doctor if you are having trouble sleeping.

Natural Treatments for Insomnia:

1. Supplements: You may have tried various sleep remedies. Sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t. You may have tried sleeping pills. Unfortunately, they don’t take you to a deeper state of restful sleep that’s needed in order to repair your body. They also don’t heal the underlying cause of the sleep disorder. The truth about natural sleep remedies is that you have to experiment with different ones and see which ones work  best for you. The ones I’ve found to be most effective are Myocalm p.m., a calcium-magnesium-herbal combination from Metagenics; Tranquinol which is a mixture of magnesium and herbal extracts and melatonin nanoplex  which is a liquid concentrate. The last two are from Premier Research Labs. Melatonin is a naturally ocurring hormone in the bran. The pineal gland in the brain makes serotonin which is later converted to melatonin at night. Melatonin works best if taken 30 minutes before bed. Melatonin should be avoided by pregnant and nursing women and people suffering from autoimmune diseases, depression or schizophrenia.

2. Diet: Reducing the amounts of alcohol, caffeine,  sugar and carbs before bedtime can help. caffeine can be found in coffee tea soft drinks and chocolate. High carb meals late at night can interfere with sleep. Eating magnesium rich foods such as almond  butter and tahini can  be helpful as late-night snack  to help you sleep.

3. Chiropractic: In addition to diet and nutritional supplements chiropractic adjustments can be crucial in overcoming insomnia. When you have a bad night sleep your upper neck will go out of alignment which will then cause another bad night’s sleep. So it’s important to get adjusted soon as possible after having a bad night sleep in order to  put a stop to chronic insomnia.

4. Lifestyle: Lifestyle is also very important. It  can be helpful to turn off the computer and television after 10 PM take a hot bath and a calcium/magnesium tablet and go to sleep. Exercising  earlier in the day and taking a sauna at night can also very helpful.

5. Emotional Stress: Another cause of insomnia is anxiety, stress and old unresolved conflicts that are locked in the body. Fortunately, it is possible to heal these with CARE-.Chakra Armor Release of Emotions. We just muscle test and find out if the cause of the insomnia is emotional and where it’s located in the body. Then I use the CARE treatment  to release the emotional blockage.

6. Adrenal Exhaustion: Chronic insomnia may also be due to an adrenal gland imbalance. If you’re burning the candle from both ends, your adrenal glands might be exhausted and that could be the cause of your insomnia. If you often feel tired between three and five p.m. it can also indicate a  problem with the adrenals. Adrenal exhaustion decreases the levels of DHEA in your body. This controls your ability to fall asleep. During the initial exam I take your blood pressure lying down and then standing up in order to evaluate the adrenal glands. If it doesn’t go up 10-12 points or if it goes down it’s an indication for taking the Adrenal Stress Index saliva test.  After we get the results back I can suggest a variety of supplements that have been proven to help strengthen the adrenal glands.

7. Perimenopausal Causes: Insomnia is a condition that many women will experience during their perimenopause. In most cases, it’s due to an imbalance  of female hormones. These can be tested with a saliva tests as well. If you’re low in progesterone, rubbing in progesterone cream before bed can help you to relax and get a deep rest.

8. Menopause and Insomnia: New Findings Link Estrogen Decline, Sleeplessness And Mineral DeficiencytWomen in the pre-menopause and menopause years are more and more finding themselves experiencing symptoms of chronic insomnia which occurs nearly simultaneously whenever the level of estrogen falls.

As menopause approaches, another emerging link between estrogen decline and its symptoms is the aspect of mineral deficiency. Mildred Seeling, M.D. describes this in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition. She says “Estrogen enhances magnesium utilization and uptake by soft tissues and bone and may explain the resistance of young women to heart disease and osteoporosis — as well as the increased prevalence of these diseases when estrogen production ceases.”

The pioneering nutritionist Adelle Davis writes of mineral deficiency during menopause in her book Let’s Get Well. Davis says: “Calcium is less well absorbed and the urinary losses are greater when the output of estrogen decreases. Such calcium-deficiency symptoms as nervousness, irritability, insomnia, and headaches are common.”

Sleep in magnesium deficiency is restless, agitated and disturbed by frequent nighttime awakenings. However, all forms of magnesium are not equally effective. In a study of more than 200 patients, Dr. W. Davis used magnesium chloride as a possible means of combating insomnia. The researcher reported that sleep was induced rapidly, was uninterrupted, and that waking tiredness disappeared in ninety-nine percent of the patients. In addition, anxiety and tension diminished during the day. (W. Davis and F. Ziady, “The Role of Magnesium in Sleep,” Montreal Symposium).

Magnesium chloride crystals are made from seawater.

Another benefit of magnesium chloride crystals is that they instantly dissolve in any temperature of water.  Natural remedies for sleep, such as Sleep Minerals from Nutrition Breakthroughs, have begun to include this highly digestible form of magnesium.

9. Insomnia in the Elderly: Long-term (chronic) insomnia is more common in the elderly. It can be caused by psychiatric disorders, alcohol and substance abuse, depression and anxiety, chronic pain and many medical disorders such as congestive heart failure, hyperthyroidism, rheumatologic diseases, dementia, Parkinson’s disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma, and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

10. Yoga: I have written an e-book yoga for deep sleep. It contains a series of asanas or stretches that will help you unwind and get a good night’s sleep. If you would like a copy, please e-mail me @ drrettner@sbcglobal.net

11. Feng Shui

Feng shui, which originates in the Chinese philosophy of Taoism, instructs on how to arrange rooms, furniture, offices, houses, and other arrangements to maximize favorable energy flow throughout living spaces. Here are some recommendations that may help promote relaxing sleep:

• Try not to have the bed in a corner of the room. The corners are where energy tends to be stagnant.

• Avoid putting your bed next to a window. Energy can be drained this way.

• The bed shouldn’t be positioned so that the soles of the feet, when lying face-up in bed, directly face the doorway.

If you think that you may be suffering from insomnia please call me for a free consultation at 510-558-0164 or e-mail me at drrettner@sbcglobal.net I would love a chance to relieve your symptoms and help you to achieve a happier, healthier life style. Thank you.

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