For many people who are newly recovering from drug and alcohol addiction, it can be pretty common for users to experience symptoms of insomnia as their bodies detox all of the chemicals out. Outside of addiction, insomnia generally affects about one in three adult Americans, and most people are pretty quick to get prescription medications to alleviate their sleep issues. Inside addiction, insomnia can occur as a withdrawal side effects for almost every drug that can be abused. Alcohol and opiates are among the top two offenders for people who experience post acute withdrawal insomnia. However, for people who are trying to get and stay sober, introducing a prescription sleep aid can often lead to a new addiction. There are however, a plethora of holistic and natural remedies to help overcome insomnia.
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Insomnia and Withdrawal
It is going to be a little different for everyone, and if you’ve tried to get sober before, chances are you know how you will be affected. If you are detoxing from opiates, you will probably experience restless legs, waking frequently throughout the night, body cramps, etc. With alcohol, many people often develop sleep apnea, where the upper air passages become restricted during sleep, causing the person to wake gasping for air. Since alcohol is a depressant, lung capacity and heart rate can slow to dangerous levels, and users can experience numb limbs, delirium tremens, and seizures if sleep is not achieved. Long story short, it’s going to be uncomfortable, painful, and might drive ya a little crazy, but there are other alternatives to get to sleep if you don’t want to shovel prescription meds down your throat anymore.
Create a Steady Pattern
Some people find that when they don’t have a set sleeping schedule, it can be hard to fall asleep, stay asleep, or they feel groggy throughout the day. It has been proven that if a person goes to sleep and wakes up at the same time every night, their body becomes adjusted to the pattern. Although it may take a little while to get adjusted, it is a free and natural trick to combat insomnia. Even if the user just lays in bed with the lights dimmed, it allows the body to start to relax, and shortly after, the mind can follow.
While yes, it is helpful to put yourself to bed every night at the same time, once laying down, the issue might be quieting your mind. If you find that your body is tired, but your mind won’t stop racing, I have found for myself, that doing some sort of guided meditation as I lay in bed really helps to slow the racing thoughts. There are thousands of videos on youtube that will help the user to focus on their breathing, relax the body, and then quiet the mind. I find that I usually fall asleep within 15 minutes or so. I have found the youtube videos that have a white noise, wave sound, or distant thunderstorm always help me fall asleep really quickly. Studies show that people who anticipate over not getting enough sleep while they lay in bed usually have a harder time actually falling asleep. So meditating before bed can be extremely helpful.
Diet and Caffeine Intake Help Insomnia
An important aspect of insomnia that not many people take into consideration is how greatly it is affected by diet, exercise, sugar, and caffeine intake. Some people are more easily affected by sugar and caffeine than others, but for those who are already experiencing symptoms of insomnia, even the slightest increase in caffeine later in the day can lead to lack of sleep. For people who are recovering from drugs and alcohol, we usually find that we experience intense sugar cravings (to combat the lower serotonin levels in the brain). Eliminating coffee and sugar from your daily routine will make a huge difference. On the other hand, people who frequently exercise are more prone to better sleep, especially if the workouts are done in the morning.
Herbal Remedies for Insomnia
Although getting prescription medications can be habit forming and expensive, there are other holistic remedies to aid in deep and fast sleep. For example, herbs such as Melatonin, lemon balm, and Valerian have been used for thousands of years as relaxants and sleep aids. Melatonin can be bought at any drugstore or pharmacy and is a hormone that regulates the wake/sleep cycle and other daily biorhythms. A higher dose of 2.5 mg taken as sublingual tablets (to be placed under the tongue and allowed to dissolve) at bedtime will usually be sufficient for even the worst insomniac, just make sure that your bedroom is completely dark. A much lower dose, 0.25 to 0.3 mg, is more effective for regular use. Valerian is also used for conditions connected to anxiety and psychological stress including nervous asthma, hysterical states, excitability, fear of illness (hypochondria), headaches, migraine, and stomach upset. Sometimes, Valerian is added to bath water to help with restlessness and sleep disorders.
There are countless options to remedy insomnia without the use of prescription medications. For people who are trying to withdraw from all drugs and alcohol or only sleep medications, there are plenty of holistic, natural, and free alternatives. During the early stages of recovery, it is crucial that addicts and alcoholics don’t replace one addiction with another, which is very common in treatment centers and detoxification centers these days. If you are ready to get sober and stay sober, try using these holistic remedies to cure your issues with insomnia.
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Freedom From Addiction
If you have found yourself suffering from alcoholism or addiction, you are not alone! If you are ready to change your life and live free of addiction, then FindAddictionRehabs.com can help. We give you the jump start to recovery you need. Our holistic program is unique in that it doesn’t just treat the addiction, it treats the whole person. For more information on our program, call 1-877-959-7271 today.