How did you sleep last night? Did you struggle to fall asleep? Wake up during the night? For one in four Americans, occasional insomnia is a fact of life. Most Americans don’t get the recommended eight hours of rest every night, and for some, insomnia is a chronic problem. Chronic insomnia can cause diminished energy and difficulty with daily tasks. Because lack of sleep impacts the immune system, you may find yourself suffering from colds or struggling at work or school. The anxiety created by sleeplessness may, in turn, feed your insomnia and make sleeping even more difficult.
In the long term, insomnia is a very serious problem. It is associated with weight gain, moodiness, and even depression. A 2005 University of Rochester study found that insomnia is a major risk factor for depression, even in patients who had never experienced depression previously. If you’re currently suffering from mild insomnia, it is important to address your sleep patterns before you experience these serious symptoms.
However, it isn’t necessary to take prescription sleep medications, many of which can be habit-forming or have side effects. Whether you struggle to rest because of stress and anxiety, or you suffer from waking up during the middle of the night, acupuncture can help alleviate your sleeplessness.
Acupuncture works to combat insomnia by redirecting the flow of your Qi, or energy, which can be imbalanced due to stress, anxiety, medications, or other causes. Creating an individualized plan for you, your acupuncturist may also suggest complimentary therapies like yoga, meditation exercises, or diet to adjust your sleep patterns. With acupuncture, you can address all the potential causes of your insomnia.
Before trying sleeping pills, consider acupuncture and these other natural insomnia therapies which offer a safe, effective, drug-free, and natural approach to inducing sleep.
1. Acupuncture. Stimulation of certain pressure points may aid in your sleep.
2. Aromatherapy. Utilizing natural essential oils may help you sleep at night.
3. Diet modification. Avoid spicy foods or other foods that may trigger night-time discomfort. Changing your diet can also help your Qi.
4. Yoga or Meditation. These relaxation techniques may help with any anxiety that is disrupting your sleep.
5. Ambient Light Control. An inexpensive eye mask is a simple solution to blocking light that inhibits deep sleep.
6. Sound Pollution. Sound blocking and masking strategies are helpful in reducing interrupted sleep.