Natural Sleep Aids
Getting to sleep isn’t always as simple as drifting off after a long day. Sometimes you need to rely on natural sleep aids to help you get off to sleep and, of course, stay asleep. If you’re looking specifically at natural-based options, you can find solutions that will be effective in helping you even out your sleeping schedule for the better all without pharmaceuticals coming anywhere near the list of options.
How can I treat insomnia at home?
You can treat insomnia at home safety and effectively by focusing on the sleep problem that you’re having. First you should learn about what causes your problem. Then, research and choose the right natural solution for you and your needs. For some it’s something like nasal strips. For others, they’re more drawn to an edible option such as valerian root or melatonin.
Insomnia can be safely and effectively treated at home, and here are some great pointers to help you get a good night’s sleep each night.
Understand where your sleep problem comes from
The first step to enjoying a restful sleep each night is to focus on what, exactly, is causing your sleep issues. Is it something simple like too much caffeine or sugar in the evenings? Are you stressed or worried or in pain? Understanding what is the thing that is keeping you up will help you make sure that you choose the best natural for solution.
For example, if you are dealing with a breathing problem or snoring that wakes you up, consider nasal strips like “Breathe Right” for better sleep. These are great natural, chemical-free strips that simply work to open up your nasal passages and reduce any snoring or nasal congestion that keeps you from getting to sleep.
What is the best natural remedy for insomnia?
There are a few options on the list of remedies for natural sleep aids, some of which are more well-known than others. While suffering from insomnia is common, the science behind natural-based sleep aids isn’t. Let’s change that by taking a careful look at the realistic and practical options for a good night’s sleep. Amongst the top options are:
- Magnesium: This mineral is helpful for quieting down the mind when you lie down to go to sleep. Since it helps relax the mind and body, often people are able to fall asleep easier and faster. Carefully maintaining magnesium levels helps your sleep become better which will wake you up in the morning feeling refreshed.
- Fish Oil: Research is suggesting that taking fish oil at night before bed can improve sleep by helping you fall asleep quickly, sleeping better through the night and have improved daytime activities. Researchers are saying that omega 3 fatty acids from fish oil increase the amount of melatonin levels thus improving the quality of sleep. Fish oils is a part of my personal sleep regime for the past 3 years.
- Milk: Can milk at bedtime help you fall asleep quicker and sleep better? Research says yes and no. From my own personal experience, I say yes! Milk contains the amino acid tryptophan which helps you fall asleep and it also contains melatonin. A Korean study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food suggest that milk that was milked from cows at night-time was more effective at getting a good night’s sleep and reducing anxiety. Where do we find milk that is produced at night? Lullaby Milk is a company that does this. Amazing!
- Nose Strips: These strips are not just for those who snore but if you are dealing with a breathing problem or snoring that wakes you up, consider nasal strips like “Breathe Right” for better sleep. These are great natural, chemical-free strips that simply work to open up your nasal passages and reduce any snoring or nasal congestion that keeps you from getting to sleep. I happen to have very clear nostrils and while I have been told that I don’t snore very much I was curious about wearing nasal strips after learning some athletes wore them during games and even race horses were wearing them. I gave them a try and I have not stopped for 3 years except when I run out and I notice it the next day when I get fatigued easier. It makes sense, getting more oxygen during those 8 hours is good for the body and mind. It works for me anyway, you might want to think about it. I use the Walmart brand extra strength nasal strips, they are almost half the price of Breathe Right.
- Lavender: When you’re looking for something that isn’t a pill or a supplement, the simple scent of lavender might be precisely what you need to feel sleep, drift off to sleep and wake up in the morning feeling rested and refreshed. For those who want to try with options other than edible ones before going straight to the supplements, this could be a good starting point.
- Valerian root: This herb is a supported option for when you are looking for something that will make you feel sleepy. Since feeling sleepy is often a common issue with insomnia, this is particularly helpful in this case. While it helps promote that sleepy feeling, the actual helpfulness in the quality of sleep isn’t well supported in some patients. There is also some question on whether or not it is safe for long-term use. However, if you’re deliberately searching for something make you feel sleepy, this could be it!
- Melatonin: When you think of natural sleep aids, you often think of melatonin. Often assumed to be the best option out there for getting to sleep and sleeping restfully, recent studies show that it might not be the best one after all. Not only are other supplements thought to promote a deeper sleep so that the patient can wake up feeling refreshed, there is also some concern regarding safety on its use in children as well as anyone who uses this long-term.
Is melatonin a safe natural sleep aid?
As briefly mentioned above, there appears to be come sort of controversy on the safety of melatonin and its use as a safe and natural sleep aid. While melatonin helps improve sleep habits, the actual effectiveness of melatonin in terms of long-term use isn’t really supported by a lot of medicine. That’s not to say that it isn’t a good idea, it’s just that melatonin is thought of as being a safe natural sleep aid to consider with the understanding that it should be a short-term option for those working shift work or you’re dealing with jet lag.
Natural sleep aids are fantastic options to consider when you’re looking at getting to sleep or improving your quality of sleep. While the actual best choice often depends on your preferences and body chemistry, all of these natural options will give you the right introduction to natural sleep aids so that you can find the right one for you and enjoy those quality zzz that you’ve been searching for all this time. You may be surprised at which natural option works best for you.
Emily is the content director and a contributor with 10 Best Mattresses. Emily was born and raised in Texas. After college she taught English for one year in Japan. Emily is an advocate for getting a good night’s sleep and she is passionate about promoting the benefits of good sleep such as increased alertness, improved mood and increased energy.
There was a time Emily was having trouble getting the type of sleep she had while in her 20’s. This has happened to a lot of us, right? Anyway, after noticing her quality of sleep declining, including a period of insomnia, Emily started researching sleep and sleep topics. In addition to sleeping on a great mattress with great bedding, Emily has a night time routine that works for her. She says it’s a firm mattress, a good book, milk, magnesium and fish oil. Emily sleeps great every night and her smile shows it everyday!