MY TIPS FOR DEALING WITH INSOMNIA.
From a young age, I always slept like a log. Nothing or no one could come between my eight hours and me. But when I reached my mid-twenties something changed.
It’s the dreaded word we daren’t speak of for fear we’ll catch it. For most of my life I couldn’t sympathise with anyone that struggled to sleep. I was that annoying person who would sleep through anything. But when it hit me, it might as well have been a tonne of bricks falling on my head. The exhaustion was (and is) very, very real.
I think a massive contributor to my struggle with sleep was born from my ever- growing anxieties.
My insomnia comes in waves and is made up of two forms.
- Not being able to drift off. Which will involve me lying in bed, staring at the ceiling for hours on end. With a completely exhausted body, but wired mind.
- Falling asleep as quickly as you can say ‘Bob’s your uncle’. But waking up in the middle of the night with my mind racing. I’ll then lie there until about an hour before I’m due to get up, at which time I’ll fall into the deepest sleep and wake up feeling horrific.
Needless to say, I don’t function well on little shut eye and so it’s been my life’s work to find ways to help aid a more restful, peaceful and full nights sleep.
It’s not something I’ve talked about much with you guys before and thought what better time to discuss it. For the New Year, we want to feel well rested and ready to tackle whatever 2019 throws at us. So I wanted to share some of the products and methods I use to help me beat the devil that is Insomnia.
Being the worrywart that I am, it feels natural to start with what I use to combat that come night-time.
Journaling is a somewhat new addition to my routine, but has proved super helpful. Sharing your worries and woes can often feel like more of a pressure due to fear of judgement. But writing them down is free, it can be done anywhere and it doesn’t require you to give any kind of reason or explanation to anyone else.
It helps me to be completely honest with my thoughts and feelings. I literally feel my stress levels reducing as I get the words out on to the page.
I also always have a bottle of Rescue Remedy night spray by my bed. For when I feel a bout of anxiety washing over me, I simply spritz two sprays and immediately feel the results of my mind settling and my thoughts begin to rationalise.
BREAK THE CYCLE
Sometimes severe lacks of zzz’s calls for a short-term sleep aid. Phenergan® Night Time is my go-to for the times where no other methods cut the mustard. It’s a pharmacy only product that can start to work within just twenty minutes (hooray!).
With the knowledge that it can help me drift off, it definitely helps to ease my anxiety, which means I feel far more relaxed going to bed. (Worrying about not being able to sleep often adds to the exhausting repetition of my insomnia and is most definitely not fun).
The active ingredient, promethazine hydrochloride, works as a sedative, helping you to sleep through the night. Promethazine is an antihistamine and it works by blocking the action of histamine, causing you to feel sleepy.
I tend to pick up a packet from my local Tesco pharmacy and use for a few days to help break the sleepless cycle. I always have an incredible night sleep when I take it and using it for just a few days at a time helps to get my body back into a more stable routine.
AT HOME REMEDIES
First up on this list has to be the simplest one (that we so often avoid).
I find that if I have a structured bedtime routine, I will sleep far better than if I don’t.
I try to be in bed by 10pm (and not use my phone for social media after this time). I’ll journal or read and aim to be going to sleep by 11pm latest. During this time I’ll apply my Lush sleepy cream, a night-time hand cream and drink a sleepy tea (quite a lot of sleepiness related stuff, but I love it!). I’ll spritz my pillow with a sleep-spray before lights out and on really rough nights, I’ll use the Calm app to play a story or music to help me drift off.
N.B. I usually find listening to anything before sleeping really annoying and off- putting. But the Calm app is different somehow! I don’t find it at all distracting and concentrating on the words just helps me feel more relaxed. I’ll often have drifted off before it’s finished.
Insomnia is no joke, and lack of sleep can often put our emotional and physical health at risk. I really hope some of these products will help you beat the vicious cycle and make you feel more relaxed come bedtime!
If you’d like to learn more about Phenergan Night Time, you can visit their website here.
That’s all for now!
Phenergan Night Time 25mg film-coated tablets contain promethazine hydrochloride and are suitable for adults1. Take one or two 25mg tablets before bed. Phenergan Night Time should not be used for longer than 7 days without medical advice2. Always read the package leaflet before use.
1 Thakkar MM, Sleep Med Rev, 2011, 65-74
2 Phenergan Night Time SPC – February 2017