Rodgers and Hammerstein left out a vital mention in their
“My Favorite Things” lyrics, namely sleeping. Sleeping is one of my favorite
things- I once received a bed as a birthday present.
So it stands to reason that lack of sleep, insomnia to be specific, is a least favorite thing. It's annoying to be under the covers, all snuggly and ready to go, when foreign language phrases or a terrible pop song run through your head on a loop. Very annoying.
Insomnia may occur from disrupting circadian rhythms, and is considered to be difficulty sleeping at night, waking too early in the morning, or waking too frequently throughout the night. The characteristics of insomnia are not feeling refreshed after sleep, inability to sleep though tired, daytime drowsiness and fatigue, and anxiety around bedtime. There are numerous possible causes, most often coffee, stress, alcohol, and anxiety are to blame. But most cases of insomnia don’t have an identifiable cause.
There are a few professional medical suggestions offered by the University of Maryland Medical Center to help combat and prevent insomnia.
To prevent insomnia from happening:
- Avoid Caffeine and Nicotine (particularly after noon)
- Reduce stress with yoga, meditation, or deep relaxation
- Exercise regularly (before dinner and not too close to bedtime)
- Get regular exposure to late afternoon sun (stimulates melatonin to regulate those circadian rhythms)
To help treat insomnia:
- Eat carbs – A light snack of crackers or cereal before bed.
- Less fluids – Avoid before bedtime.
- No naps – Particularly in the evening.
- No television – Avoid just before bedtime.
- No time – Avoid looking at the clock to avoid further anxiety.
- Bathe – Take a hot bath too hours before bed.
- Cave like room – Keep your bedroom cool, quiet, dark, and well ventilated.
- Bedrooms are for sleeping – Avoid reading, watching television, or working in your bedroom.
- Keep consistent – Maintain regular sleeping and waking times.
- Don’t go to your room – If you can’t sleep, move to another dimly lit room if you can’t fall asleep.