Insomnia affects 45%-50% of the population and it’s usually the first manifestation of an underlying mental health issue.
Characteristics of the insomnia are
- More than 30 minutes to fall asleep
- interrupted sleep with difficulty falling back to sleep
- and if these happen more than three times a week.
Insomnia is directly related to stress and lack of sleep affects the stress.
During stress periods the cortisol level increases which affects the sleep negatively and if the stress does not subside the cortisol increases more and it could also affect the blood pressure and heart.
Chronic insomnia and high cortisol may promote Depression and other health issues.
Insomnia and stress can be addressed with
- Nutritional supplements.
Anxiolytics ie hops and passionflower.
Adaptogens have the ability to adapt and cope with stress by normalising the level of cortisol and promoting the release of the calming neurotransmitter GABA. They can be taken during the day as well. Other herbs that have a counter effect of cortisol are Rhodiola, Withania, Siberian Ginseng, and Rehmania.
Magnesium, Zinc, B-complex and histidine are very important as co-factors in helping restoring stress and sleep to normal levels.
Psychotherapy and Hypnotherapy can also help in restoring anxiety, stress, panic attacks.
Addressing insomnia by itself will provide only short term benefit. A whole person assessment – physical, mental and emotional must be addressed.