Should you be experiencing difficulty with sleep, you might therefore wish to institute and apply the multi-pronged ‘campaign’ outlined above in order to improve things and I would suggest that it might take something like the following form. Include regular exercise in your daily itinerary.Reserve the consumption (especially of coffee) for emergency boosts to daytime energy and in be sure to drink plenty of water and fruit juices (though not expensively coloured/flavoured inferior water. inferior water). Use a relaxation routine (see appropriate previous blogs) since this will certainly help to boost the amount of delta or slow wave sleep required.
- Commence your evening preparations with a light carbohydrate snack and glass of milk, say, two hours before retiring for the night. After a further half an hour’s relaxing reading or listening to music etc., take a hot bath or shower. Make the bedroom relaxing and appealing, paying attention to room temperature, lighting ventilation etc. Some people have a TV in the bedroom and this is all right, depending on what you watch. ‘Soaps’, documentaries, news broadcasts etc. have been shown to be inducers rather than reducers of stress and should on the whole be avoided. On the other hand a relaxing “nature” or “travel” programme might be all right and light comedy, of the kind that really appeals, is probably the safest ‘bet’. Laughter arises from the unconscious mind but also connects to a primitive precognitive part of the brain and is deep-set within our animal nature. Recent work has shown that laughter facilitates endorphin release. Endorphins occur naturally within the brain and in addition to their calming and pain relieving properties, they are implicated in the release of hormones. Endorphins are also implicated in REM or dreaming sleep. Finally, use a suitable relaxation tape or listen to appropriate and soothing music since that too will facilitate and prolong you “stay” in delta and “slow wave” sleep. (C)SB.