This is a double-issue. Lack of sleep kills (stresses you up, shortens your life), yet sleep medications are dangerous and can…well, shorten your life!
Sleep deprivation is regarded as torture under international law and is branded as such by the United Nations.
Sleep deprivation may sound quite harmless in comparison to other methods of torture; however, ongoing sleep deprivation is an extraordinarily cruel form of torture, which leads to a breakdown of the nervous system and to other serious physical and psychological damage.
Women seem to suffer from lack of sleep much more than men (about 50% more, according to Dr. Ryan Hays, an assistant professor of neurology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas).
Two obvious reasons suggest themselves: there are a lot of hormonal and biological changes throughout the life cycle that women experience, and those affect the ability to sleep, plus the fact that much more is required of women these days, as they juggle many different life roles.
Being constantly on the go can make relaxing for sleep difficult.
As a result, twice as many women as men seek help in the form of sleep medications. But there is a price: death! A recent report in the journal BMJ Open suggested prescription sleep aids may shorten life or increase the risk of certain cancers.
So any better way of getting to sleep is welcome. But we need far more than just the usual “sleep hygiene” recommendations, like getting to bed on time every night, partaking in regular exercise or using your bed only for sleep or sex.
For example, it may be a good idea—instead of worrying about things to do in bed—to write up a to-do list early in the evening and then prioritize it. Then dump it till morning! That’s better than carrying all the tension in the head.
Another little sleep trick involves body temperature. Researchers have found that sleep comes with a drop in a person’s core temperature. Taking a relaxing warm bath before bedtime could help aid sleep because it will set you up for a significant drop in body temperature in the hour or so that follows.
Make sure you sleep in real dark if you have a sleep problem. That helps the release of melatonin, which definitely helps put you to sleep.
Natural herbal remedies, like valerian and Avena sativa (oats) extract, might have a useful place.
But a better approach by far is that of brain entertainment. By harmonizing and coordinating right and left brain energy flows, sleep can come naturally and easily.