Can’t Sleep Won’t Sleep! – Night Sweats and Active Brain!
It’s been going on for a few months now, the waking up at 3am or 4am, having a night sweat- well I am 53 years old, so what can I expect?!
Well I did expect to be able to get back to sleep again! But no, I wake up, almost throw myself out into the frosty night to cool down my “menopausal midnighters” and then stay awake for hours!
I’m sharing this for 2 reasons; firstly there may be many other women out there who face the same nightly challenge and the info posted by the members of WOBS Club was amazing and I am trying a few out and secondly I wanted to demonstrate just how wonderful the WOBS Club members are.
So, without further ado here are some of the tips I received in the 29 responses:
1. “Exercise 2 in this link it really helps – only tried it one night myself so far but would definitely recommend it!” http://www.drweil.com/…/three-breathing-exercises.html
2. What time are you going to bed? What time are you waking? What are you doing before you go to bed? (I mean are you working;-) or reading in bed ) And what are you eating last thing at night? First thing that comes to mind is if you can massage your feet before bed that helps – coconut oil will cool your system. I am an Ayurvedic Practitioner btw. Will come back to this thread later this afternoon. Nadi shodhana is good for hormonal regulation, my short blog may help How-to-Easily-Breathe-in-Health-and-Vitality
3. Guided meditations work for me. I know I’m totally missing the point but there are a couple of people with such soothing voices that I struggle to stay awake when I genuinely am trying to meditate so I use them as sleep aids too. My personal faves for sending me to sleep (in the best possible way) are Bodipaksa of WildMind.org and Tara Brach who has loads of stuff on YouTube.
4. I used to suffer from lack of sleep and overactive brain in the night. Since taking some natural supplements that enable me to have peak energy during the day and detox my body during the night, I need less sleep but I sleep so well and deeply that I feel so refreshed when the alarm goes. It is incredible but I love it and would recommend it to everybody. It is just a question of rebalancing your energy levels, as unfortunately at “our age” (I suppose we are around the same age) everything goes out of balance! Let me know if you want to know more.
5. Sympathy Claire; it’s especially hard when you run your own business and have to get up get ready and present yourself to the world bright eyed and bouncing every morning. When I went through the mp I decided to do hard time (no hormone repl) and the best tip I was given – and it did help – was to accept it, go with it and not fight it. It’s a bit like going to the dentist – there really does come a time when the awfulness is over – focus on that
6. I use guided meditations which I know is missing the point but if I’m trying to sleep they do help. I find Bodipaksa and Tara Brach have particularly soothing voices, and I do use them for their intended purpose too!
7. Wow Claire some amazing advice and probably need to do a bit of all of it. There are some fantastic herbal supplements out there too that would be worth trying as well as good sleep hygiene and eating ‘sleepy’ foods before bed. But I think this what Lorraine is able to help with. Xx
8. Quick brain dump Claire, hope these help
1. Ideally go to bed at the same time each night, your body loves routine.
2. Keep temperature around 18-19⁰C in your bedroom
3. Keep the bedroom completely dark, any light stimulates our pineal gland in the brain to think it is waking time
4. Incorporate exercise into your daily routine – brisk walk is fine
5. Keep your bedroom for sleep & sex only
6. Have a no-tech zone at LEAST one hour before retiring – mobiles, laptops, anything with a screen (these should not be used in a bedroom anyway)
7. Your melatonin (sleep hormone) starts secreting at 9pm, this is prime time to start winding down, difficult if you work late in to the evening
8. Don’t use your mobile as an alarm clock – the EMFs (electro magnetic frequencies) are circulating around your head as you sleep (or don’t sleep as the case may be)
9. Don’t eat a large meal for at least 3 hours before retiring, otherwise your digestion is still wide awake and so are you!
10. Don’t use alcohol to get you to sleep, it may get you off to sleep but you will have a disturbed night
11. Have a small snack before bedtime – bananas, porridge, oat cakes are tryptophan-rich sleep inducing foods. Low blood sugar can sometimes wake you.
12. Eat magnesium-rich foods e.g. green leafy veg, nuts & seeds as this is the anti-stress mineral and a great natural sleep aid
13. Bath in magnesium salts (Epsom Salts) – add 2 cups to a hot bath and soak for at least 20 minutes
14. Keep a note pad by your bed, if you have thoughts that pop into your head, write them down and forget them
15. Meditation apps as mentioned by others are great
16. Lastly, aside menopause (which is a massive subject all of its own) many sleep issues are down to anxiety & restlessness, so try to deal with this at source.
9. There is a well-known study of Mayan women who celebrate menopause as their community sees them as wiser and respected, it’s a massive revered social status. Consequently, they have few, if not, no menopausal symptoms. Sadly, it is not the same here, however, it’s a great take home message to accept that menopause is a natural transition to be supported not a disease that needs to be treated.
10. There a large number of bach flower remedies which can help with this – please pm me if I can help – they truly work wonders and I have used them for many of my cliennts – do give me a shout – it would be great to help
11. I haven’t read all the comments but can so relate. My doctor didn’t belive me but it was menopause. after I got that taken care of I sleep again!!! (I was so down I took hormones and every day was worth it) until I discovered a herbal mix that works wonderfully. Sold in EU and US. pm if you are interested.
12. Work with it, and make it work for you – I have a sleep cycle more like the one described here and have to manage energy particularly ensuring that enough rest breaks are taken in the day if things are busy – a mid afternoon meditation is not uncommon! Since reading this article I stress less about a broken nights’ sleep …http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-16964783
13. Minerals play a massive part in balancing hormones & helping to promote restful sleep & we just don’t get enough from our diets. Sizzling Minerals are an amazing, natural plant based mineral supplement. Certainly relieved my severe PMS, i sleep like a baby & wake refreshed. Would be happy to provide more info & free sample. I agree meditation is a great help too!!! Good luck!
14. lavender and rescue remedy night.
15. This supplement plus Aloe Vera gel every day can help to settle down the hormone swings and let you sleep better (Vitolize Women)
16. take a look at The antiestrogen diet Book
17. My cd sends lots of clients to sleep! ABC angelic lifestyle & mp3, lots tips, lavender on pillow… Sometimes (not every night!) we need that nighttime inspiration if we aren’t listening enough in day (occasionally happens to me!) http://www.angeliclifestyle.com/index.php/testimonials
18. Also my Pilates beach relaxation sends lots clients to sleep – 5 minutes long. I will record a free you tube one soon & send to you… It’s also on the 1-7 minute lazy Pilates workout
19. Many clients of mine in last 16 years have found Pilates aids sleep! (They never turn up to class for this benefit!!!!)…
20. I love it when a ‘post’ like yours Claire, invites so much enthusiasm and infectious ideas. Sleep, or lack of, has a massive effect on our lives. You have lots of options now Mrs Godwin and I hope you find an answer. I know you are a qualified hypnotherapist – so you will know how effective the therapy can be – if you would like me to help you work on this – I would be more than happy to help. www.jansullivanhypnotherapy.co.uk
22. Work with your body clock ( same time every to bed every night and up every morning) – do this breathing exercise over and over : breathe in count of 4, hold for count of 7, breathe out count of 8 xxxxxxx www.FreyaBlom.com
23. I sleep with a Magnetix power heart under my pillow and I sleep much better. I also put NYR Organic’s Night Time oil on my sheet so I can breathe in the soporific oils, they relax me and get me to sleep.
24. I was introduced to mindfulness whilst having CBT and have found that really useful for “switching off” before bed. Get occasional periods of insomnia and use this instead of worrying why I’m awake. I’ve even been to the nearest buddhist centre to start learning about meditation and at my first class I was almost asleep I was sooooo relaxed.
So thats one post asking for help and ideas and what an amazing response within minutes.
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