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    How to Cure Insomnia in 12 Minutes

    Insomnia, a common sleep disorder faced by many in the UK, often leaves individuals tossing and turning, yearning for a peaceful night's sleep. It's estimated that one in three Brits experiences bouts of insomnia during their lives, raising the question: can it truly be cured, and if so, how swiftly? This article delves into the heart of what insomnia is and its prevalence and explores the possibility of a 12-minute remedy.

    What is insomnia?

    Insomnia is a sleep disorder characterised by difficulty in falling asleep, staying asleep, or both. Individuals with insomnia may experience a range of symptoms, including:

    • Struggling to get to sleep

    • Frequently waking up during the night

    • Waking up too early and not being able to fall back asleep

    • Feeling tired when you wake up

    • Symptoms during the daytime include fatigue, mood disturbances and an inability to concentrate or function

    What causes insomnia?

    Insomnia can be triggered by a variety of factors, often intertwining both internal and external causes. The root causes of insomnia can vary from person to person, but some common triggers and conditions include:

    • Stress

    • Travel or work schedule

    • Medical conditions

    • Medications

    • Mental health conditions

    • Caffeine, nicotine and alcohol

    What is primary insomnia?

    Primary insomnia, also sometimes referred to as idiopathic insomnia, is a sleep disorder where an individual struggles with sleep disturbances that cannot be directly attributed to any other medical, psychiatric, or environmental cause. Treatment for primary insomnia typically involves behavioural and cognitive interventions, like cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia.

    What is secondary insomnia?

    Secondary insomnia, also known as comorbid insomnia, refers to sleep disturbances that arise as a direct result of another medical, psychiatric, or external factor. Essentially, it's insomnia caused by an identifiable underlying condition or factor. To effectively treat secondary insomnia, it's essential to identify and manage the underlying cause. Once the primary issue is addressed, sleep quality often improves.

    How common is insomnia in the UK?

    In Western countries, it is thought that around one-third of the population will experience some form of insomnia in their lifetime (Morphy et al, 2007). This makes it a prevalent issue in the United Kingdom, affecting a significant proportion of the population. The figures accentuate the importance of recognising and addressing sleep disturbances. 

    What can lead to insomnia?

    Insomnia can be instigated by various factors, often intertwining both internal and external influences. Here is a table that summarises potential factors that can lead to insomnia.

    Can I cure insomnia in 12 minutes?

    Curing insomnia in 12 minutes is a bold claim, and while it's unlikely that any singular remedy can provide a complete and lasting solution in such a short span, there are techniques that can help initiate relaxation and potentially improve sleep onset within minutes.

    How to cure insomnia in 12 minutes

    Light Exposure

    Can exposure to morning light help you regulate your sleep cycle?

    Yes, exposure to morning light can indeed help regulate your sleep cycle. The science behind this is rooted in our body's internal clock, known as the circadian rhythm, and its relationship with the hormone melatonin (Blume et al, 2019). Regular morning light exposure can be a simple yet effective strategy to regulate one's sleep cycle, enhance mood, and improve overall well-being.

    Can exposure to darkness in the evening help you regulate your sleep cycle?

    Absolutely, exposure to darkness in the evening plays a crucial role in regulating your sleep cycle. Just as morning light exposure can help set your circadian rhythm for wakefulness, evening darkness serves to signal the body that it's time for rest. Creating a dark environment in the evening is a natural and effective method to enhance sleep regulation. 

    Medications

    Can taking Melatonin help you to fall asleep faster?

    Melatonin can aid certain individuals in falling asleep. Using melatonin could potentially get you to sleep in less than 12 minutes. While some individuals may find its effectiveness diminishes with daily use, others may fare well with nightly doses of 1-2 mg or even more. For those undertaking shift work that unsettles their sleep pattern several days a week, this could be an invaluable remedy.

    Can I get Melatonin (Circadin) at EU Meds?

    Yes, you can purchase Melatonin (also known as Circadin) online from EU Meds to help you fall asleep within 12 minutes.

    Can other medications help you to fall asleep faster?

    Yes, at EU Meds we have a variety of different sleeping tablets that you can use to help you fall asleep quicker. Our range of sleeping medications includes:

    Can a doctor's appointment help you to fall asleep faster?

    A doctor's appointment in itself won't directly cause you to fall asleep faster. However, consulting a doctor about sleep difficulties can be beneficial in identifying underlying causes and recommending appropriate interventions. A doctor can assess if there are any underlying medical conditions causing the sleep disturbance, such as sleep apnoea, restless leg syndrome, or other health issues.

    Practical Tasks

    Can reading help you to fall asleep faster?

    Yes, for many people, reading can be an effective way to help them fall asleep faster. Reading can be a calming activity that distracts the mind from the stresses and worries of the day. It helps to relax the body and mind, preparing it for sleep. Reading a book in bed has also been proven to help increase sleep quality as opposed to reading a book before you get into bed (Finucane et al, 2021).

    Can imagining repetitive things help you to fall asleep faster?

    Yes, imagining repetitive things or engaging in repetitive mental activities can indeed help some people fall asleep faster. The principle behind this is to distract the mind from stressors, anxieties, or the overthinking that can often delay sleep. Here are some techniques you can use to help you nod off at night:

    • Counting Sheep: An age-old technique where you imagine sheep jumping over a fence and counting them.

    • Visualising Waves: Imagining the repetitive motion of waves on a beach.

    • Walking Through a Forest: Picturing yourself walking through a forest, focusing on each step and the sounds around you.

    While these techniques can be helpful for many, they might not work for everyone. If the mind continues to wander or if the repetitive task becomes stressful (for instance, if you lose count), it might be best to switch tactics.

    Mindfulness and Wellbeing

    Can meditation help you to fall asleep faster?

    Meditation can be a beneficial tool to help individuals fall asleep faster (Rusch et al, 2018). Meditation helps calm the racing thoughts that can often keep one awake. It centres the mind and reduces the mental chatter, which can be particularly helpful if you find yourself overthinking at bedtime. For those unfamiliar with meditation, starting with short sessions and guided recordings can be helpful. Over time, as the practice becomes more familiar, the duration can be extended, and different techniques explored. 

    Can yoga help you to fall asleep faster?

    Yes, yoga can be an effective tool in promoting better sleep and helping individuals fall asleep faster (Wei, 2020). The combination of physical postures, breathing exercises, and meditation in yoga can offer numerous benefits for sleep. While yoga can be beneficial for many, it's essential to practise poses safely and within your comfort levels. If new to yoga, starting with guided sessions or classes can be helpful.

    Can massage therapy help you to fall asleep faster?

    Yes, massage therapy can be beneficial in promoting better sleep and assisting individuals in falling asleep faster. Massage helps to relieve muscle tension, reduce pain, and promote overall physical relaxation, which can be conducive to sleep. While massage therapy can be beneficial for many in promoting sleep, individual responses may vary. Additionally, some medical conditions or physical ailments might contraindicate certain types of massage.

    Can clearing a stuffy nose help you to fall asleep faster?

    Certainly, clearing a stuffy nose can help you fall asleep faster and achieve more restful sleep. A blocked nose can make it difficult to breathe comfortably, leading to disrupted sleep patterns. Clear nasal passages allow for smooth and uninterrupted breathing, which is crucial for falling asleep comfortably and staying asleep. Optimal oxygen intake is vital for bodily functions during sleep. A clear nose facilitates this, ensuring cells and tissues receive adequate oxygen throughout the night. Mild, shorter term insomnia is a common symptom of the common cold (Gomi, 2019)

    Diet and Exercise

    Can exercising 12 minutes a day help you to fall asleep faster?

    Exercising for 12 minutes a day can certainly have a positive impact on sleep, including potentially helping you fall asleep faster. Engaging in physical activity, even for a short duration, can lead to increased physical tiredness, which may help induce sleep. Exercise can contribute to a rise in the production of sleep-promoting hormones like melatonin, especially when done regularly (Kruk et al, 2021).

    Can taking electrolytes help you to fall asleep faster?

    Electrolytes are essential minerals that carry an electric charge and play a vital role in maintaining various physiological functions in the body, including muscle function, acid-base balance, and fluid balance. Common electrolytes include sodium, potassium, calcium, bicarbonate, magnesium, chloride, and phosphate. While certain electrolytes like magnesium may have a role in promoting better sleep, simply taking electrolytes won't guarantee you'll fall asleep faster (Manzar et al, 2017). It's always best to consider the broader context of your health, lifestyle, and any underlying conditions that might be affecting sleep.

    Can drinking herbal tea help you to fall asleep faster?

    Yes, certain herbal teas are renowned for their potential sleep-promoting properties. Drinking these teas as part of a bedtime routine can induce relaxation and potentially help individuals fall asleep faster. Here are some herbal teas commonly associated with better sleep:

    • Chamomile: One of the most popular sleep-promoting teas, chamomile is believed to contain antioxidants that may help induce sleep by reducing anxiety and promoting relaxation.

    • Valerian Root: Often referred to as "nature's Valium," valerian root tea has been used for centuries to treat various ailments, including insomnia. Some studies suggest it can help reduce the time it takes to fall asleep and improve sleep quality.

    • Lavender: Known for its calming aroma, lavender tea might help reduce insomnia and promote a night of deeper sleep. Drinking lavender tea can provide a sense of relaxation and calm.

    • Lemon Balm: This herb is often used to reduce stress and anxiety, potentially aiding in sleep. It's sometimes combined with other herbs, such as valerian, to enhance its sleep-promoting effects.

    • Passionflower: Some studies indicate that passionflower tea might help improve sleep quality. It's believed to boost levels of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain, which can reduce brain activity and help induce sleep.

    • Peppermint: While not directly a sleep aid, peppermint tea can soothe digestion, which might help in promoting more restful sleep, especially for those who experience digestive issues at night.

    Drinking herbal teas before bed should come with some considerations. Ensure that the chosen herbal tea is caffeine-free, as caffeine can disrupt sleep. Drinking any liquid shortly before bedtime can also lead to nighttime awakenings due to the need to use the toilet. It's advisable to drink the tea at least an hour before planning to sleep.

    Can reducing caffeine intake help you to fall asleep faster?

    Yes, reducing caffeine intake can indeed help you fall asleep faster and improve the overall quality of your sleep (Drake et al, 2013). Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant. It can delay the onset of sleep by blocking the action of a neurotransmitter called adenosine, which promotes sleep and relaxation. High caffeine intake, especially later in the day, can not only delay the onset of sleep but also reduce the proportion of restorative deep sleep stages.

    How can EU Meds help you to fall asleep faster?

    EU Meds offer a variety of different medications that you can purchase if you are wanting to fall asleep faster, stay asleep for longer, or just get more sleep in general. As mentioned, our range of sleeping tablets includes:

    Sources

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