On average, you need at least 6 hours of sleep to waken feeling fully rested. It’s been shown to encourage sleep if you go to bed at the same time each night, which should be around 10:30 to 11 p.m. It’s also a good idea to rise around the same time each morning. Earlier is better than later.
Most of us experience sleep issues at one time or another during our lives. But as you get older you may find that happening on a regular basis. Your insomnia may even become chronic and take its toll on your health. Let’s take a look at what could be causing you to toss and turn, and some things you can do that will help.
Why You Aren’t Sleeping Well
1) PROBLEM: Too much TV!
Insomnia has been linked to excessive TV watching. It seems that overexposure to the bright light emitted from your TV screen (or your iPad or smartphone for that matter) can negatively affect your melatonin production. It’s thought that using these devices at night tricks the brain into thinking it isn’t time for sleep.
SOLUTION: Cut off the TV or other devices at least an hour before bedtime, preferably two. You might also want to remove all of your electronics from your bedroom and use this room just for sleeping. Instead of watching TV, read an inspirational book, listen to relaxing music, or use this quiet time for meditation or prayer before retiring to the bedroom.
2) PROBLEM: Too much to drink!
Alcohol can make you drowsy and help you fall asleep, but it deprives you of the deep sleep you really need. A glass of wine with dinner won’t put a dent in your slumber. However, consuming several drinks before bedtime can have you waking in the middle of the night, unable to get back to sleep. If you frequently drink before bed, you will find yourself chronically drained and exhausted from lack of deep sleep.
SOLUTION: Alcohol should not be used as a sleep aid. Nor should you depend on medications, which also rob you of REM sleep. Instead, create a new relaxation routine that will encourage sleep. You might want to begin an exercise regime that gets you outside during the day. Merely walking at a moderate pace for a half hour daily can reduce the time it takes to fall asleep, help you sleep longer and get better quality sleep.
3) PROBLEM: Not enough hormones!
Problems with endocrine hormones affect both men and women who are experiencing perimenopause, menopause or andropause. At this stage of life, hormonal imbalance prevails. Insomnia is a typical side effect of fluctuating or depleted hormones.
SOLUTION: Get your hormones checked! If you are deficient in testosterone, estradiol or thyroid, you can likely benefit from a safe and effective bioidentical hormone replacement therapy such as SottoPelle®. Not only will it alleviate symptoms of hormone deficiency and help you get better rest, our BHRT is the perfect foundation for a healthier, happier life as you age.