One of the most common causes of insomnia is worry. These lead us to a state of alert that prevents us from falling asleep. Here are some tips to combat the situation.
Most of us, at some point in life, have experienced trouble resting. Especially when the mind is cluttered with thoughts that generate worry, anxiety, fear and stress. Fortunately, here we show you what to do when worries keep you from sleeping.
Usually, emotions prevent us from falling asleep. Well, its function is to keep us alert and prepared to face threats or avoid danger. The circumstances that put us in this state are usually associated with financial, work, family and health problems.
For its part, the worst of this problem is that the fact of not being able to sleep because of being worried generates more concern. What causes a vicious circle. It has been shown that, in the long term, this dynamic generates severe health problems, which is why it is considered necessary to intervene in time.
Tips to distract yourself from your worries at night
We are going to see 6 useful tips to let go of night worries and fall asleep. You can put some into practice or several of them combined.
1. Keep a sleep schedule
Try to have a consistent sleep schedule. A fairly common mistake that disrupts your sleep rhythm is staying up late at night and getting up late on weekends. Then, pretend to go to bed at the usual time on Sunday nights.
The ideal is to go to bed and get up early. Try to be consistent with the schedule. This way you will get used to the body and it will prepare to sleep when it is time.
2. Write your thoughts before sleeping
One way to get distressing thoughts out of your head is to write them down. Performing this activity minutes before going to bed can help relieve relief and not interrupt your sleep during the night.
You can keep a journal of worries, in which you write down all those situations that distress you. Studies show that this technique can be effective in managing stress and anxiety.
Just jotting down your worries can help. Also, review your notes after a few days and ask yourself if the thing that distressed you so much really happened. Over time, you will notice that most do not come true.
3. If worries keep you from sleeping, get out of bed
Although it may seem counterintuitive, the harder you try to fall asleep, the less chance you have of falling asleep. Since lying down trying to sleep without success causes more anxiety.
Also, your mind will associate the bed with the distressing situation. Consequently, the next time you go to sleep, you will remember the unpleasant experience.
In these cases, it is best to get out of bed, leave the room and do another activity until you feel sleepy. Avoid doing things that activate you, such as exercise, housework or some pending work. Instead, flip through a magazine, color mandalas, knit, meditate.
4. Avoid using electronic devices before sleeping
Hours before going to bed, avoid exposing yourself to the screens of electronic devices (cell phones, computers, tablets). Especially when worries keep you from sleeping.
The light emitted by these devices has been proven to alter biological rhythms and the secretion of melatonin, the hormone responsible for regulating sleep-wake cycles.
5. Execute relaxation techniques
Every day take a moment to relax. Avoid excusing yourself by saying that you are too busy for it.
If you think like this, then you most urgently need a few minutes for yourself. This doesn’t have to take more than 20 minutes. The important thing is that you make it a habit.
Do techniques such as meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, yoga, guided imagery, or deep breathing exercises. Develop them during the day and when you have trouble falling asleep.
It is important that you do not abandon these practices when you start to sleep better. Well, they are also ways to prevent insomnia and anxiety.
6. Practice gratitude before bed
When going to bed, instead of focusing on everything negative and that generates anguish, think about the good that surrounds you, no matter how small, and be thankful for it. Being grateful has been proven to raise levels of well-being and satisfaction with existence.
You can be grateful for such simple things as having a comfortable bed, a good morning coffee, or having experienced a relaxing bath. Keeping them in mind and thanking them for it can help you sleep better. A study showed that people who practice gratitude consistently have better sleep quality and duration.
When to go to a professional if your worries don’t let you sleep?
Lack of sleep, compounded by anxiety, increases the risk of severe complications that affect health and general well-being, such as the following:
Tremors and muscle cramps.
That said, if worries have not let you sleep for several days, you need to see a specialist. Don’t expect the situation to get worse.
Going to a health professional will help identify the underlying causes and apply the most appropriate treatment for the case. This can be your trusted doctor, a specialist in sleep disorders or a psychotherapist.
Good rest is a pillar of health and well-being
Sleep problems should not be underestimated. Once they appear, the necessary measures must be taken to restore rest.
One way to do this is by implementing the tips that we have just presented. But if the problem persists, it is best to go to a professional. Insomnia can be an indicator of other, more serious problems, such as an anxiety disorder or depression.