Treating Insomnia When Sleep Hygiene Isn’t Enough

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Better sleep habits often assistance you get a bully night’s rest. But erstwhile you person an ongoing sleep disorder similar insomnia, attraction involves taking a person look astatine the reasons down your sleepless nights.

What Is Sleep Hygiene?

Sleep hygiene means habits that assistance you get a bully night’s sleep. It includes things like:

  • Keeping your country cool, dark, and quiet
  • Turning disconnected electronics similar cellphones, laptops, and tablets 30-60 minutes earlier bed
  • Getting immoderate prima to equilibrium your body’s interior wake-sleep timepiece (called circadian rhythm)
  • Exercising regularly
  • Not smoking
  • Cutting down connected alcohol and caffeine
  • Avoiding dense meals adjacent to bedtime

Why Sleep Hygiene Doesn’t Always Work for Insomnia

Good slumber hygiene is 1 of the easiest things you tin bash for amended slumber. But connected its own, it’s not apt to assistance those who unrecorded with insomnia. This upset often causes occupation with falling oregon staying dormant and mediocre slumber prime erstwhile you bash motion off.

Sleep hygiene doesn’t code basal causes of insomnia similar ongoing pain, depression, oregon anxiety. “Sleep hygiene gives you a model to alteration immoderate habits, but it whitethorn not absorption connected these halfway things,” says Annie Miller, a behavioral slumber medicine therapist astatine DC Metro Sleep and Psychotherapy.

Research reveals that slumber is intimately tied to mental health. It tin beryllium harder to slumber with depression and anxiety, portion insomnia tin marque these mental health problems adjacent worse. Treating 1 tin amended symptoms of the other.

Which Treatments Work for Insomnia?

Cognitive behavioral therapy

Miller and different experts usage cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT-I) arsenic a modular attraction for chronic insomnia. CBT-I is simply a programme that includes slumber hygiene and besides helps you spot and regenerate harmful behaviors that get successful the mode of prime sleep. CBT-I methods include:

  • Sleep restriction. Instead of lying successful furniture tossing and turning, you’ll get retired of furniture erstwhile you can’t drift off. This method helps interruption the rhythm of staying successful furniture during a bout of wakefulness, which tin pb to adjacent worse sleep. The thought down it is you’ll go somewhat sleep-deprived and much worn retired the adjacent clip you spell to bed. You’ll besides spell to furniture and aftermath up astatine the aforesaid clip each time and debar naps.
  • Sleep diary. For 1 to 4 weeks, you’ll support a diary to way your habits successful and retired of bed, similar however overmuch caffeine and intoxicant you consume, bedtime routine, naps, and however overmuch slumber you’re getting astatine night. “I tin spot however overmuch clip they’re spending successful furniture due to the fact that that’s what we privation to reduce,” Miller says. “We’re trying to acceptable it up for them to beryllium successful bed, beryllium asleep, and that’s it.”
  • Stimulus power therapy. With insomnia, your brain fights sleep. Stimulus power therapy retrains your caput to deliberation of going to furniture arsenic a cue for slumber alternatively than wakefulness. To bash this, you’ll acceptable up and instrumentality to a regular docket for waking to acceptable your circadian rhythm. You’ll spell to furniture lone erstwhile you’re genuinely sleepy, and if you can’t autumn asleep, you’ll get retired of furniture for a portion and lone spell backmost erstwhile you’re sleepy again. You’ll besides debar taking agelong naps precocious successful the time truthful you’re sleepy erstwhile it’s clip to crook in.
  • Relaxation training. Techniques similar meditation, imagery, and musculus relaxation assistance soothe your assemblage and mind.
  • Passive wakefulness. You’ll larn to merchandise interest astir going to slumber and to halt “trying” to bash it, which volition assistance you unbend and autumn dormant much easily. Experts besides telephone this method paradoxical intention.
  • Biofeedback. Biofeedback involves tracking your heart rate, musculus tension, and different functions that interaction slumber truthful that you tin larn to power them truthful that you tin unbend and sleep. You tin bash this connected your ain oregon with a location biofeedback device.

Light therapy

Sleep and airy person a almighty connection. 

Light therapy aims to dainty disorders similar insomnia and different wellness issues by exposing you to airy that mimics sunlight. You’ll beryllium successful beforehand of a specially designed airy therapy container that gives disconnected airy similar the sun. A league whitethorn past 20 to 40 minutes, and you tin bash it astatine home. Light therapy boxes travel successful antithetic styles that scope from table lamps to visors that you deterioration implicit your face.

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