Modern medicine has come a long way since doctors thought it useful to cover their patients in blood-sucking leeches as a cure for everything, from hair loss to hemorrhoids. But, anyone who has read the ominous inserts that accompany most prescription medications will know they can do as much harm as good. This is especially true for people with insomnia. When looking forward to better sleep, people can quickly develop a dependence on pills. This ultimately does more harm than good.
With that in mind, we take a look at three approaches to getting a good night’s rest that doesn’t involve popping any pills.
1. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Research suggests that cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) might be a good treatment for insomnia. Studies show that CBT produces results comparable to or better than those achieved with prescription medications. What’s more, improvements persist for significant periods following the initial intervention.
In essence, the treatment focuses on a range of sleep-related factors and usually comprises between 4 and 12 sessions with a qualified practitioner. Behavioral and cognitive processes are carefully analyzed and adapted where necessary. Patients will track their sleeping patterns and habits. Also, they will implement a holistic plan of action to improve the quantity and quality of their sleep. This often includes exercising and adjusting one’s diet and sleeping environment.
There’s also an emphasis on stress and anxiety management. After all, these factors contribute to interrupted or delayed sleep. Coping mechanisms may be reviewed, altered or introduced to assist clients in dealing with these issues. CBT-I (cognitive-behavioral therapy for insomnia) has significant support from the scientific community, with some studies finding it effective in up to 80% of cases.
The use of aromas as a form of complementary medicine dates back over 600 years. Recent studies into aromatherapy have explored their effect on mood, alertness, stress, and sleep. The results have been generally positive. Although not a definite cure for insomnia, essential oils extracted from flowers, fruits, roots, and resins do in fact produce scents that relax of both body and mind.
But how does an aroma affect change in one’s mental states? Recent studies indicate that the structure of the oil’s molecules might actually mimic hormones that occur naturally in the body. When the aromas are inhaled, receptor cells in the nose transmit a signal. This signal is sent to the limbic system, which triggers the release of neurotransmitters like serotonin in the brain. This can result in a sense of heightened calmness or even euphoria.
The essential oils associated with insomnia-relief include lavender, cumin, sweet orange, mandarin, ylang-ylang, chamomile, sweet basil, and valerian, amongst others. Lavender is probably the popular essential oil. It helps to ease anxiety, boost mental alertness, and lessen aggressive thoughts and behaviors.
Synctuition represents the culmination of a decade of work by the world’s leading neurologists, psychologists, medical experts, musicians, and producers. Our team analyzed the latest research on stress and audio therapy to isolate the sounds that work best to calm the mind. Based on this research, we spent years recording and composing Synctuition’s tracks to create the perfect formula for natural and man-made sounds to fight the effects of stress.
Synctuition is the first and only deep relaxation system that combines binaural beats, gamma waves and 3D audio soundscapes that soothe the mind, relax the body and help the brain to form a habit of relaxation. Synctuition uses this powerful brain frequency in a manner that sounds pleasant to the human ear, mimicking our brain’s natural pre-sleep frequency, that gentle vibration we feel as we drift off to sleep. Best of all, it is a truly natural, non-invasive way to sleep better.