Can't get sleep? Try these natural sleep inducers

  • IANS, London
  • Updated: Jun 19, 2015 18:38 IST

If you feel restless and end up lying awake in bed, try natural tips like inhaling through your left nostril and rolling your eyes to get instant sleep.

A survey by Crampex tablet makers has found that 86% of the population suffers from sleep disturbance.

But one can trick oneself to sleep by trying these expert natural tips, reports

*Inhale through your left nostril: This yoga method is thought to reduce blood pressure and calm you. Holistic sleep therapist Peter Smith says: "Lie on your left side, resting a finger on your right nostril to close it. Start slow, deep breathing in the left nostril." The expert says this technique is particularly good when overheating or menopausal hot flushes are preventing sleep.

*Squeeze and relax: Relaxing all your muscles can prepare your body for sleep. Anxiety expert Charles Linden says: "Lying on your back, take a deep, slow breath in through your nose and, at the same time, squeeze your toes tightly as if you are trying to curl them under your foot, then release the squeeze."

*Try to stay awake: Challenge yourself to stay awake - your mind will rebel! It's called the sleep paradox, says psychotherapist Julie Hirst. She explains: "Keep your eyes wide open, repeat to yourself 'I will not sleep'. The brain doesn't process negatives well, so it interprets this as an instruction to sleep and eye muscles tire quickly as sleep creeps up."

*Rewind your day: Remembering the mundane details in reverse order clears your mind of worries. Sammy Margo, author of The Good Sleep Guide, says: "Recall conversations, sights and sounds as you go. It helps you to reach a mental state that's ready for sleep."

*Roll your eyes: Margo says that closing your eyes and rolling the balls up to three times can do the job. She says: "It simulates what you do naturally when you fall asleep and may help trigger the release of your sleepy hormone, melatonin."

*Find your trigger: The key to this trick is to start the habit as you drift off during a period when you are sleeping well, then you can use it when you have difficulty. Do something unusual, such as stroking your own cheek, as you nod off, says hypnotherapist Sharon Stiles.

*Make a worry list: Going over a to-do list in bed is a major cause of insomnia. Sharon Stiles says: "Often it's because you're frightened of forgetting what needs doing. So before bed, write your list on paper so you can forget it until next day. You could also imagine filing your thoughts in a cabinet. You'll be calmer and more likely to sleep."

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