Saturday, January 25, 2014
I generally have no problem sleeping now although I have had major problems in the past. But I was interested to see in this assignment if there were tried and true techniques for those night when I just don't seem to be able to fall asleep.
I do most of the things suggested for sound sleep: I have a regular bedtime routine, I don't drink caffeinated drinks near bedtime (but I WAS surprised to learn the effects of such drinks can last 10-12 hours!), I sleep in a cool room and don't watch television. I have to confess that I have been guilty of using an ipad, which, of course, has backlighting - bad for relaxing the brain. But there seems to be little co-relation between the nights I use it to play the odd game of Candy Crush and and those when I cannot get to sleep. So that leaves anxiety and stress.
I have been diagnosed with panic attacks which were happening at any time during the night or day and I now have medication to deal with them. The problem is that I have no idea of what triggers the attacks.
However, as far as sleep goes there are some useful techniques I can use: to wind down and calm the mind at sleepless times I can practise deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation and visualise a peaceful restful place. I have done some of these in the past but it has done no harm to be reminded of them. I also find that mentally reading a favourite book or watching a film in my mind can send me to sleep. ZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzz!