Insomnia is a horrible condition that can disrupt sleep for people in a number of ways.
According to The Sleep Foundation, there are five main types of insomnia that people typically suffer from:
- Acute Insomnia – Brief episodes of difficulty sleeping usually triggered by stressful life events that resolve without treatment
- Chronic Insomnia – Long-term difficult sleeping patterns typically consisting of trouble falling asleep and staying asleep three or more days a week for three months or longer
- Comorbid Insomnia – Insomnia that occurs as a result of another condition like anxiety or depression and will clear with the treatment of the other condition
- Onset Insomnia – When insomnia occurs at the beginning of the night when the sufferer is trying to fall asleep
- Maintenance Insomnia – When a person has multiple wake ups during the night followed by difficulty getting back to sleep
No matter what your type of insomnia you have, finding a gentile aide to help you get through your insomnia can be the key to survival.
Many of the over the counter sleeping aids like Benadryl have extreme hang over the next day. When the medicines leave you feeling groggy and foggy it’s almost better if you had not slept at all.
There are herbal options for you to take in order to help with your insomnia. These all-natural herbs are usually taken in the form of teas or pills and can easily help to replace those hangover inducing over the counter insomnia treatments.
As with all new medications or supplements make sure you discuss your use of herbal medicines with your doctor, some may interact with medications.
Passionflower is a mild sedative and can be used to treat stress and insomnia. A study in Current Neuropharmacology (2015) listed passionflower as an effective treatment against insomnia. There are several teas available that use passionflower as the main ingredient or you can purchase supplements.
Be careful when purchasing supplements in the United States because the supplement purity and quality is not regulated and you could be getting something other than what is listed on the bottle. For this reason when trying passionflower for insomnia, it is best to stick with teas and whole ground products of this herb.
Valerian has been used since ancient Greece as a sleep aide and sedative. Recently science has taken this ancient herb to task to see if it holds up to the scrutiny of statistical significance. A study published in the 2009 issue of Clinical Geriatric Medicine noted that valerian showed some improvements in slow wave sleep patterns. In addition, those who took valerian had a significant subjective improvement in their sleep pattern.
Almost everyone knows someone who drinks a glass of chamomile tea before bed. This herb is one of the oldest forms of herbal medicine and has been used to treat many common human ailments. A study published in the Molecular Medicine Report showed that Chamomile has a flavonoid in it called apigenin that binds to the benzodiazepine receptors in the brain. This acts as a central nervous system depressant and an anticonvulsant. Both of these factors are thought to be why chamomile is so good at helping people fall asleep.
What Should I Take?
Herbs have the ability to bind to neurochemical transmitters in our brains as chamomile does with the benzodiazepine receptors. Because the herbs often act like traditional modern medicines, you should always talk to your physician about adding in an herbal supplement to help you sleep. This will make sure that they do not interfere with any of your current medications that you are taking.
You can find teas that contain one of the herbs or all of the herbs listed above. Depending on your bodies response you may only need a small dose of passion flower in order to fall asleep. If you have severe insomnia you may find that a blend of all three works better for you.
Try them out and see which herb helps you hit the hay faster.