How Stress Wrecks Your Sleep & Solutions To Help You Relax

July 21, 2017
Healthy Sleep

Stress management strategies can help you to lower your stress levels so it is easier to go to bed and sleep at night instead of tossing and turning, having nightmares or waking up repeatedly.

Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy can instantly reduce your stress levels. Some of nature’s scents help elevate your mood, concentrate better, promote focus and reduce your anxiety levels. The idea is for the scents to stimulate your limbic system, which releases the chemicals in your body associated with feelings of calmness, tranquility and relaxation. Lavender has a soothing scent that lowers your heart rate and regulates your blood pressure so you can relax and fall asleep. Cypress has a balancing and grounding effect to promote clear breathing and reduce the tension in your muscles to help you to relax. Rosemary can lower your cortisol levels, which rise in your body in response to stress. Rosemary can also enhance your memory, increase your mental clarity and relieve your anxiety.

Baths

Soaking in the bath in warm water has always been shown over time to soothe the mind and the body. The warm water helps to simulate your blood circulation and in turn releases your tension in your muscles. Very warm baths raise your heart rate and temperature and then the body releases sweat to rid you of toxins. After you start to sweat, your blood vessels dilate and it improves your circulation to remove lactic acid from your muscles, eases any pain in the body and lowers your blood pressure. Adding soothing aromas such as eucalyptus or lavender to your bath water can help increase the benefits. These scents are also available in bath salts.

Diet

Your diet can be causing you to be stressed out and in turn not allowing you to fall asleep at night. High fat and carbohydrates are your enemy. Try to incorporate healthy foods such as protein and whole grains to relieve stress levels. Salmon, almonds and blueberries are shown to have the best stress busting qualities. You can also add Vitamin B rich foods to promote proper brain function and help in your nervous system while fighting fatigue and inducing relaxation.

Exercise

Exercising on a schedule can give you time to be alone with your thoughts so you can let them go. Any type of exercise helps, such as yoga, kickboxing, swimming, or aerobics. The gentle forms of exercise clear your mind and give you a break from thoughts that are causing you stressfulness in your life. Vigorous exercise can take your mind off worries and help you to forget about them as you focus on your exercise goals. Exercise is shown to decrease stress by increasing your level of endorphins, which leads to a much improved mood.

Herbal Tea

Passionflower is comparable to some sleep aids in that it treats stress and is a remedy for insomnia and anxiety. It boots GABA in the brain to lower brain cell activity and to make you more relaxed. You can find passionflower in herbal teas, liquid extracts and infusions. Another great herbal tea is chamomile. It acts as a natural tranquilizer with a relaxant to help you to fall asleep and also has nerve tonic properties to relax your muscles and relieve you of anxiety.

Lower Screen Time

Checking your phone or tablet every few minutes is a common thing these days, but it also causes undue stress on you. Preoccupied checking of messages at work can make you late on deadlines and increase your stress as well as irritate you when you are getting updates on someone’s conditions. Try to watch less television before bed and don’t use a mobile device for about 30 minutes before bed, so you can relax and fall asleep.

Massage

Massages have been used for generations to open up blocked energy channels, relieve muscle tension and reduce pain while improving circulation and calming the mind. You can give yourself a scalp massage to help stimulate your blood vessels and nerves to soothe tension in your head. This releases serotonin and endorphins to elevate your mood, reduce your stress and make a relaxing environment. A foot massage at the base of the toes helps to relax your head and releases endorphins to help you relax.

Meditation

Many people find that meditation greatly helps to overcome their stress levels. Meditation for only about 15 to 20 minutes a day is shown to help with stress. You can do this no matter where you are. You clear out your mind and have complete silence to let your thoughts out. Your purpose should be to focus attention while you eliminate your jumble of thoughts that crowd your mind on a daily basis. In addition, focus on slowly breathing inward and outward to enable you to lower your heart rate as well as lower your blood pressure to fight stress. Meditation is shown to help lower stress levels for up to 24 hours after a session.

Organization

Most people don’t realize that organizing things around you offers a sense of control over things and gives you peace of mind. You can organize a simple area, such as your spice rack in the kitchen or cleaning out your purse or brief case. Organizing items help you to find what you are looking for and help to bring your life into control.

Try some of these items to relieve your stress or combinations of them so you can get the illusive great nights sleep. Make certain your bed is comfortable too, and replace your mattress every 8 years. If your mattress is older, it could be preventing good sleep and you may want to get a memory foam mattress so you can sink into bed and feel cradled from head to toe.