Thursday, September 1, 2016

6 Of The Weirdest Ways To Trick Yourself Into Falling Asleep

Nothing rejuvenates the body and soul like a restful night of sleep. Drifting to sleep with ease is what we all want and need in our daily lives, but sometimes it can be difficult.

There are plenty of ways out there to self-medicate in order to speed up the sleep process, but these substances shouldn't be relied on as a way to combat insomnia.

Interestingly, there are some rather unconventional ways to induce sleep that are gaining popularity and you should try some! Check out these six somewhat bizarre ways to get to sleep. #4 is my go-to trick.

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Is this you every night? Do you lay and wait for sleep that never seems to come?

Luckily, there are some pretty interesting and somewhat bizarre tricks that can help you fall asleep.

1. Find a soothing behavior to associate with periods of good sleep.

One way to get your body to 'remember' nights that you slept well is to 'tag' a soothing action to them. For example, if you happen to have a few nights where you have slept decently, rub your hand slowly with your fingertip as you are falling asleep. Clear your mind of everything but that action. If you do this repeatedly, the action will serve as a cue that can reactivate your body's sleepy state on nights that are restless.

2. Turn your clock around, or cover up the time on the clock if you have to set an alarm.

I know whenever I can't sleep and I have to get up at a certain time in the morning, I obsessively look at the clock. Sleep therapist Dr. Nerina Ramlakhan recommends not looking at the time.

“This just sets off the worry cycle and also takes you out of the sleep center of the brain and into the more alert calculation center of the brain as you work out how much sleep you’re losing." At the end of the day, it doesn't matter what time it is unless your alarm is going off, so don't give yourself something to worry about.

3. Do some humming. 

This sounds odd at first, but it's a technique borrowed from yoga and meditation. Sleep expert Dr. Chris Idzikowski told the Mirror that people should try it.

“Breathe gently out of your mouth, lips together so you hum. Try to hum for the whole out-breath. Notice how it vibrates in your chest. Focus fully on this vibration over six breaths then sit quietly for a moment. Tell yourself ‘I am ready for sleep’, get up slowly and go to bed.”

4. Close your right nostril and slowly breath through your left. 

Again, this sounds pretty weird, but it can help people fall asleep. When you're laying in bed, lay on your left side, cover your right nostril, and then breath slowly and deeply through your left nostril. This is thought to reduce blood pressure and ease someone into a deep sleep. 

5. Rub the top of your ear.

Rub the hollow portion at the top of your ear as you try to fall asleep. Acupuncturist Gillian Berry told Express that stimulating this sleep-sensitive pressure point may be the trick to finally get you to sleep.

6. German self-hypnosis.

You're probably thinking I'm crazy now, but people stand by a self-hypnosis technique called autogenic training (AT). This technique was originally developed by German psychiatrist Johannes Heinrich Schultz and involves repeating the following script:

"My right arm is heavy and warm", "my solar plexus is warm", "my heartbeat is calm and regular" and "my neck and shoulders are heavy and warm."

Repeating this script three times is thought to put someone into a deep state of relaxation, which can ultimately lead to sleep. 

7. Force yourself to stay awake.

This sounds counterproductive, but some research has shown that intentional keeping yourself awake can help with insomnia. The reasoning is that the anxiety elicited by trying to force yourself asleep is eliminated by switching your motivational state. 

8. Rolling your eyes.

It has been suggested that rolling your eyes up three times can stimulate the release of a critical sleep hormone called melatonin. Give it a try, it's incredibly easy.

9. Dip your face in cold water. 

Bedtime anxiety is a major reason people can't sleep. It has been suggested that "resetting" your system is possible by dunking your face in cold water for 30 seconds. The "mammalian dive reflex" that occurs is associated with a decrease in heart rate and blood pressure. 

10. Blow some bubbles.

Say whaaaaaatttt? I'm being totally serious here. Dr. Rachel Marie E. Salas, an expert in neurology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, told the New York Post that the act of blowing bubbles promotes slow relaxed breathing. Also, the bubbles are soothing to look at as they float away. 

Try one or a few of these tricks tonight if you have trouble sleeping.

Hopefully, you'll be drifting off like this little guy tonight.

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Author: verified_user