Getting enough quality sleep is important for hormone balance and overall good healthHow did you sleep last night? If you’re one of the one-in-three people who have difficulty getting a good night’s kip, take a look at the tips below. And if anxiety and stress have been keeping you awake, make sure you read last week’s post on managing stress.

Not having enough sleep – or getting poor quality sleep – sets us up for a host of adverse effects, from difficulty concentrating and making decisions, to memory problems, and lack of energy as well as increased risk for weight gain, depression, diabetes, heart disease, stroke and other illnesses.

Sleep disturbances are very common around perimenopause and menopause, with hormonal changes causing sleep disturbances and lack of sleep leading to further imbalances, creating a vicious cycle.

Getting seven to nine hours of quality, uninterrupted sleep every night is one of the best ways to balance hormonal levels – but obviously isn’t easy if a hormonal imbalance is causing insomnia and night sweats!

Top tips for better sleep

  1. Establish a sleep routine and try to stick with it:
    • go to bed and get up at the same time every day, and avoid daytime naps of more than 30 minutes
    • create a daily wind-down ritual; it might be having a hot bath/shower and a soothing herbal tea like chamomile or one of the many sleep-inducing blends, doing a gentle yoga, deep breathing or relaxation session, writing in a gratitude journal or listening to relaxing music
  2. Turn off computers, laptops, TVs and screen-based devices a couple of hours before bed (this short video from the UCLA School of Medicine explains why) – and read a (relaxing) ‘old-fashioned’ paper book or magazine instead
  3. Don’t eat a big meal, exercise or consume alcohol or caffeine within 2-3 hours of going to bed. If you must eat have a light protein-based snack.
  4. Use essential oils* like Lavender (or DoTerra’s Lavender Peace), Marjoram, Clary Sage, Roman Chamomile, Vetiver, and Valerian on your pillow, in a hot bath or massaged into your body: these oils can relieve stress and have a calming, relaxing and sedating effect.
  5. Keep your bedroom dark, quiet and cool: the optimum temperature for sleep is considered to be around 20-22C (68-72F).
  6. If night sweats and hot flushes are keeping you awake, wear natural fibres (or nothing) and Google hot flush cooling pillows.
  7. Try herbal sleep remedies: your local health food store, naturopath or integrative medicine GP can all recommend safe, non-habit forming sleep aids.
  8. Magnesium can also help relax you: try an Epsom salts bath, or talk with your health practitioner about magnesium supplements.

Would you like help creating a better sleep routine and feeling healthy, happy and vibrant? Wellness coaching can help! 

*For information on essential oils you can contact me via my DoTERRA page or karen@vibrantliveswellbeing.com