Help Me Sleep – Tips for Preventing Insomnia

Sometimes we can't sleep like this puppy. Here's some tips to prevent insomnia.
Sometimes we can’t sleep like this puppy. Here’s some tips to prevent insomnia.
Last week, I had some suggestions for when you were in the throes of insomnia. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could prevent insomnia from happening in the first place?

It’s bad enough when it happens once in a while. But chronic insomnia can lead to serious sleep deprivation. I consulted with a number of my health coach colleagues and have compiled a list of suggestions to prevent insomnia. Hopefully, you’ll find something that will help you.

Tick, Tock - When you can't sleep, time just seems to crawl, doesn't it?
Tick, Tock – When you can’t sleep, time just seems to crawl, doesn’t it?

Tips for Preventing Insomnia:

  • Avoid bedtime snacks – especially grains & sugars. These will raise blood sugar and inhibit sleep. Plus, you may wake up when your blood sugar drops back down
  • Avoid caffeine – especially later in the day. Check any medications as some contain caffeine.
  • Avoid MSG which has been known to cause insomnia.
  • Avoid alcohol as it can keep you from falling into the deeper stages of sleep.
  • Don’t drink liquids w/in 2 hours of bedtime
  • Eat a high-protein snack several hours before bedtime. This will provide L-tryptophan which is needed to make melatonin and seratonin
  • Get at least 30 minutes of exercise daily.
  • Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.
  • Keep the bedroom temperature no higher than 70.
  • No TV before bed – no TV in the bedroom.
  • Read something spiritual or religious before bed to help you relax.
  • Sleep in complete darkness – aids in production of melatonin & seratonin.
  • Take a hot bath or shower before bed.
  • Turn off technology – TV, computers, iPhone, iPad – at least 1 hour before bedtime.
  • Wear socks to bed. Feet often get cold and can be a cause for night-time awakenings.
  • Practice daily breathing exercises.
  • Limit video game playing – especially in the evening.
Have you had problems with frequent insomnia? Have you found somethig that helps prevent it?

Pleasant dreams!

Sleeping Puppy Photo Courtesy Juan Tello via Flickr
Clock Photo Courtesy stu via Flickr

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