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A great deal has been written about what doctors can do for insomnia. Sometimes the key to overcoming insomnia for good, however, is what you do for yourself. Here are five ways of getting better sleep that anyone can do at home.
1. Acupuncture for insomnia is not exactly something you can do at home. Acupressure for insomnia, on the other hand, is something anyone can learn to take care of the symptoms that make falling asleep difficult. Here are some easy acupressure techniques that can help you deal with the physical complaints that cause insomnia:
2. Take a warm bath. Warm - not hot - water stimulates circulation and in particular warms your feet. Cold feet, more than any other part of your body, keep you awake at night for just a few seconds at a time, interrupting sleep without inducing complete wakefulness. It also helps to add a cup of Epsom salts to your bath water. The magnesium in the salts can pass through your skin and provide calming effects for your central nervous system.
3. Listen to baroque music - during the day, not while you are in bed. In fact, it's not a good idea to try to use any kind of recorded music or relaxation CD while you are in bed. Reserve bed time for sleeping. But listening to slow, baroque music during the day calms your brain so that your are more focused during the day and more easily rested at night.
4. Drink herbal tea. Green, black, and white tea can all keep you awake at night. But herbal teas like chamoile, passionflower, or fennel relax you and help you sleep. Don't make tea with valerian, however. The taste can be offputting. The ancient Romans called valerian "phoo" not without reason. If you don't want to be finding yourself muttering "Phooey" over your cup of herbal tea, don't make it with valerian.
5. Try aromatherapy. Different scents are best for different kinds of fatigue. Don't use lavender. It's fine to use lavender to relieve headache or other kinds of pain, but it also stimulates sexual interest. Geranium, lime, mint, and peppermint oils will help you deal with racing thoughts. Cardamom helps you deal with noisy conditions. Bergamot and orange can help you when you are "just too tired to go to sleep," especially after intense physical exercise.