Everyone knows the importance of regular sleep to enable us humans to function effectively. It replenishes the mind and the body to full capacity. Without sleep we really begin to crumble rapidly. When we are having trouble sleeping, this is known as insomnia. Some people seem to need more sleep than others, although on average 7-8 hours is considered normal. Sleep patterns and quality of sleep will vary to some degree for most people. There are numerous contributing factors which may cause temporary short term insomnia, for example, when you are adjusting to different working shifts or recovering from jet lag, or perhaps due to feeling worried or nervous about a single event such as an impending job interview or exam, or it may even be due to something nice like being overly excited about going on holiday the next day. For some people though, sleep disturbance may have become a more regularly recurring and longer term issue. This could be due to a wide variety of factors such as ongoing money worries, relationship problems, babies and young children disturbing your sleep, noisy neighbours, a partner who snores loudly every night, alcohol / drug misuse, prescribed medications such as anti-depressants, beta blockers, HRT as well as other medications.Other common factors include physical conditions such as viruses, pain, skin irritations, underlying health conditions such as heart and respiratory conditions such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, stress, worry, excessive mental activity, deeper emotional conditions such as anxiety and depression, diet, as well as other environmental and lifestyle elements. (Page 1/4)
A big factor worth mentioning is the modern day phenomenon that has only really emerged over the past twenty years or so, namely the huge increase in ‘tech’ based activity that most of us engage with nowadays. This can easily disrupt sleep especially when activity is close to bedtime, such as gaming, checking your phone, going onto the internet to trawl through auction sites, reading and sending emails as well as social networking sites as well as vastly increased TV viewing hours with literally hundreds of channels to choose from. This bombardment of information and activity fills the head with all sorts of clutter just at the time of day when we should actually be unwinding. If you are currently suffering from a lack of sleep you will find many hypnosis products at the bottom of this page to help you get a good nights sleep again.During sleep we enter different phases. REM sleep (Rapid eye movement) is one of the stages of sleep and is thought to be part of the body’s way of letting go of stresses from the previous day’s activities and helps the body to ‘re-charge its batteries’ ready for the next day. It is the part of sleep when we dream. REM takes up roughly 20% of an adult human’s sleep time and a larger percentage when we are younger. REM occurs in cycles rather than a single chunk of sleep and is the part of sleep when we dream. If we do not get enough REM sleep we can begin to struggle coping with daily functioning and decision making. Under hypnosis, our brainwaves are fairly similar (but not identical) to REM sleep patterns.
Go to next page for some simple tips that can help you get a good night’s sleep that you may have overlooked. (Page 2/4)
Here are some other simple tips to also help you get a good nights sleep.
Go to bed at a regular time, and get up at a regular time too.
Create a relaxing atmosphere and regime towards bedtime. If you listen to music, make it relaxing rather than fast and energetic.
Avoid very bright lighting before bed in all rooms where possible. Adjust lighting to sooth and mellow the ambience in your bedroom.
Sleep in a darkened room.
Ensure your bedroom is cool but not cold, with adequate fresh air.
Take regular exercise.
Avoid too much caffeine for at least four hours before bedtime. (Tea, coffee, drinks such as cola, energy drinks, etc) For some people it may be best to cut caffeine out altogether.
Avoid chocolate, sugary foods and drinks for at least two hours prior to normal bedtime.
(Page 3/4) More tips on next page
Different types of brainwaves in the different stages of sleep are described below.
Delta (0 – 4 Hz)
Deep dreamless sleep
Theta (4 – 8 Hz)
Relaxed, daydreaming, hypnosis, deep relaxation, light sleep, dream state, meditation.
Alpha (8 – 12 Hz)
Rest, reflection, light trance, beginning access to un-conscious mind, pre-sleep, deeper levels of creativity.
Avoid large meals too close to bedtime.
Avoid drinking alcohol and taking drugs at bedtime.
Avoid unnecessary tech activity including TV, gaming, mobile phones, , surfing the internet and other computer activity etc near bedtime.
Use earplugs to ease noise from a snoring partner or other sources.