Insomnia is more common in women as opposed to men. Experts say that every woman will experience a certain degree of insomnia at least once in her life due to certain hormonal imbalances. This usually happens during perimenopausal stages while younger women suffer from insomnia caused by premenstrual syndrome. Insomnia, however, must not be mistaken for getting insufficient sleep as women differ when it comes to the amount of sleep they need. There is this big difference between needing less sleep and not being able to sleep whenever you need it.
To cure insomnia in women, you have to alleviate the causes of sleeping disorders. It is easy to blame it on hormones, but more often than not, it is not the sole culprit. Chronic stress, for example, is a huge contributor to insomnia in women. Stress causes adrenal exhaustion of the DHEA hormone which is an essential sleep regulator. Too much consumption of alcohol, caffeine and carbohydrates especially right before bedtime causes unnecessary alertness that keeps you from sleeping. Unresolved conflicts and anxieties also lead to lack of sleep which makes women prone to insomnia.
There is a large misconception about over-the-counter sleeping pills as being the cure for insomnia. Truth is, sleeping pills are a mere short-term reliever and a dependency on them can induce further sleeping problems. What is needed, then, is to remedy the causes of insomnia in women through natural methods that maintain hormonal balance and ensure a healthy lifestyle.
One thing that works wonders with insomniacs is keeping a sleep journal at your bedside table to track down what exactly is causing your insomnia. On a notebook, simply write down the time you went to bed, the time you awakened in the middle of the night, and the time you got up in the morning.
You may also want to take note of your premenstrual and postmenstrual experience to see if it has an effect on your sleeping habits. Try to maintain the journal in about three months and reread it to find out if there is some kind of pattern. If the journal seems to show you that you are having transitory insomnia during your menstrual cycle, then your hormones might be causing it.
There are measures you can follow in order to alleviate the symptoms of hormonal insomnia. The easiest way is to drink at least one glass of water before going to sleep. Avoidance of caffeine 6 hours before bed time or anything high in sugar content 2 hours before, also prevents insomnia as these chemicals cause mental and physical alertness.
Eating food that is high in magnesium is the way to go for insomniacs. Magnesium-rich foods are soybeans, almonds, lima beans and the likes. Food rich in estrogen has to be added in your diet as well especially if you are in a premenopausal stage. Phytoestrogens are apples, carrots, green beans, and potatoes.
Regular exercise also prevents the symptoms of insomnia in women whose tasks are not quite physically demanding. At least 30 minutes a day, thrice a week will do to avoid insomnia. Indulging yourself in physical activities especially those that allow you to socialize at the same time also discourage stress and fatigue that usually leads to insomnia.
Maintaining a positive outlook in life is essential in keeping a sound mind and body. Always remember that creating lasting relationships and keeping a fair conscience is the best way to ensure a good night’s sleep.