Payne Mountain Farms
Buy dried yellowroot and other wild herbs at Payne Mountain Farms.

Using herbal remedies to treat insomnia - herbs for a good night's sleep

Insomnia can be treated with medicinal herbs

Insomnia is a sleeping disorder. People with insomnia have trouble falling asleep or wake up after only a few hours and can't go back to sleep. The causes of insomnia can be medical, psychological, dietary, drug related, or environmental (including things like loud noise, excessive heat, and high humidity). Insomnia is associated with arthritis, depression, anxiety, tension, stress, pain, hypoglycemia, B vitamin deficiency, asthma, indigestion, high copper levels, mineral imbalance, hormonal imbalance, poor diet, and age.

Medicinal herbs are safer than sleeping pills

It is estimated that half the population experiences reoccurring and persistent insomnia at some time in their life. Over ten million Americans take prescription drugs to help them sleep and millions more take over-the-counter sleep aids. Drug induced sleep is not the best answer. Harmful side effects of sleeping pills include dependency, addiction, and even death.

Insomniacs should cut back on sugar and salt, avoid MSG ( monosodium glutamate), and never drink coffee or any beverage containing caffeine after 5:00 p.m. They should eat small evening meals and never eat heavy snacks at night. Good foods for insomniacs include brown rice, almonds, celery, wheat germ, brewer's yeast, lemon, and honey. A small glass of wine may be taken in the evening as a sleep aid.

Insomniacs should also get into a regular morning exercise routine. Daily exercise is one of the best ways to treat insomnia. When combined with morning sunshine, the benefits are even more noticeable. Bright sunshine has been shown to induce sleep approximately twelve hours later.

Medicinal herbs like bee balm can help people sleep

Many herbs can help insomniacs relax enough to fall asleep. Bee Balm, lemon balm, valerian, passionflower, St. John's wort, lavender, chamomile, California poppy, hops, rosemary, catnip, spearmint, and wild lettuce are the most well known. Also try marjoram essential oil in conjunction with aromatherapy.

Sleeping with an herbal pillow is another natural remedy that may bring good results. Lavender, hops, and chamomile flowers can be stuffed into a small pillowcase and the fragrance will help aid relaxation throughout the night.

Other tips for insomniacs

Some people find that gazing at a lighted candle for three minutes before bedtime can help relieve insomnia. Prayer and meditation can also help bring restful sleep.

Gentle bedtime massage can relieve insomnia. Use a light carrier oil mixed with lavender or chamomile essential oil. Dab a little on the bottom of the feet and on the temples for added benefits.

Deep breathing exercises have been shown to help many insomniacs. Take ten deep breaths, wait five minutes, and take ten more deep breaths.

A warm Epsom salts bath before bedtime can help insomniacs sleep through the night. Combine with aromatherapy for best results.

Some insomniacs complain of restless leg syndrome. In these cases, vitamin E and folic acid supplements may help.

Sometimes a drop in blood sugar during sleep can cause sudden awakening. Try eating a banana with a small glass of milk as a bedtime snack.

* St. John's wort may cause sensitivity to sunlight. Always consult with a healthcare professional before taking any herbal remedies.

Herbs for insomnia

© Bobby Flowers | Dreamstime Stock Photos

Medicinal herbs can help insomnia. Get a better night's sleep by using herbs like bee balm.