Insomnia is a condition in which you have trouble falling or staying asleep. Some people with insomnia may fall asleep easily but wake up too soon. Other people may have the opposite problem, or they have trouble with both falling asleep and staying asleep. The end result is poor-quality sleep that doesn’t leave you feeling refreshed when you wake up. Insomnia is a common health problem. It can cause excessive daytime sleepiness and a lack of energy. Long-term insomnia can cause you to feel depressed or irritable; have trouble paying attention, learning, and remembering; and not do your best on the job or at school. Insomnia also can limit the energy you have to spend with friends or family.

So, to combat insomnia it is imperative that we live our lives by the 5 Golden Rules of Insomnia, and they are:

1) Avoid caffeine.

Ok, we know that sometimes you really do need a cup of coffee or can of soda here and there.  But, making it a habit, and consuming it several times a day will ensure your restlessness.  It is a stimulant that keeps the mind going, forcing your body to remain ‘on the go’, making it hard for you to relax enough for a good night of sleep.

2) Try to go to bed at the same time every night.

Sometimes we need to assist our bodies with a schedule, such as sleeping.  Though the first week might prove difficult, after awhile your body will become accustomed and develop a natural sleep cycle.  Soon, your body and mind will feel that drowsiness, and you will be well on your way to preventing bouts of insomnia.

3) Try aromatherapy.

Using some pleasant and gentle aromas on your linens or throughout your room will help you to feel more relaxed and ease you into a gentle slumber.  Whether you use a spray, diffuser or sleeping mist, create an odoriferous sleep environment for yourself.

4) Do not eat or drink late.

We all get those late night cravings, but you really should avoid eating something heavy, particularly close to bedtime.  Often times, you feel hungry due to your insomnia, and you have this need to overcome stress by snacking.  But this will not do anything to help with your trouble sleeping, and in fact, will make it much worse.  Even your dinners should be scheduled so that they are at least three hours before bedtime.  Also, try to avoid any alcoholic beverages, especially hard liquor when you are going to bed.  Many people believe that the effects of liquor will make you drowsy right away, and though you might get a nap or two, this will greatly throw off your sleeping patterns.

5) Make lists.

More often than not, we lie awake at night battling with insomnia because we tend to freak out about the day ahead.  With all that is going on in our busy lives, we sometimes feel like we shouldn’t be sleeping because there is too much to do.  Before you put head to pillow, write out everything that you need to accomplish the following day.  That way, you and check them off with ease and not have to avoid sleep to worry about doing all the tasks.

Better sleep habits and lifestyle changes often help relieve insomnia.

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