In our fast-paced world, it’s easy to lose track of the things that are most important to us. Our health is one of those things.
We live in a society that prioritizes productivity and often views sleep as a luxury instead of a necessity. This mindset can have detrimental effects on our physical and mental well-being.
For most, it’s normal to have trouble sleeping from time to time. Perhaps you had a restless night, or you’re anxious about an important upcoming event. We’ve all been there. But for some people, insomnia becomes a regular occurrence that interferes with their ability to function the next day.
It’s important to find natural ways to promote relaxation and healthy sleep patterns before turning to medication!
What is Insomnia?
Insomnia is a sleep disorder that causes you to have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or getting the restorative sleep you need.
Insomnia may be accompanied by difficulty concentrating, daytime fatigue, and irritability.
These random bouts of sleeplessness can range from a one-night occurrence to a lifetime problem. Insomnia affects 30 million Americans and 75% of adults report some degree of difficulty falling or staying asleep at least once a week.
If you suffer from acute or chronic insomnia, here are some herbs that can help you cope with it better.
Cannabis: A New Molecule Discovered
Cannabis has a long history of use as a sleep aid, with the earliest recorded uses dating back to ancient China. In the early 1990s, scientists discovered an endogenous cannabinoid system in the human brain.
This discovery may help explain how cannabis can be effective for relieving insomnia and other sleep disorders.
Cannabis contains a molecule called “CBN”. In 1940, CBN was the first cannabinoid to be isolated and purified from Cannabis. Cannabis-based products are now widely available to treat insomnia, chronic pain, and anxiety.
In the United States, at least 29 states have legalized medical cannabis programs. The most common conditions treated by medical cannabis are pain and insomnia.
A 2017 study found that medical cannabis users were more likely than non-users to report improvements in sleep quality, anxiety symptoms, and depression.
Chamomile: A Mild Sedative
Chamomile is one of the best herbal remedies for insomnia. It has a sedative effect! Chamomile also helps to relieve stress, which is another common cause of insomnia.
Valerian Root: Millenial of Use
A natural sedative, Valerian is another herb that can treat insomnia. Sleep problems become no more when using valerian teas or supplements!
A 2015 study compared the effects of valerian with those of a prescription sedative and found that both treatments were similarly effective at improving symptoms of insomnia.
Lavender: Reduces Stress and Anxiety
Lavender is well-known for its calming effects and soothing scent. One study found that people who were having trouble sleeping experienced improved sleep quality after they sniffed lavender oil for two minutes at three, 10, and 17 minutes before bedtime.
Hops: Not Just for Making Beer
Hops are the flowers from the hop plant that are often used in making beer, but they also have sleep-promoting properties.
These powerful flowers contain a flavonoid called quercetin and a terpenoid called humulon. These components have sedative properties that can make it easier to fall asleep.
Plants can Help Insomnia
It is important to get a good night’s sleep for our overall health. Sleep helps the body regenerate and heal, it improves mood and cognitive function and supports a healthy immune system.
If you want to try out some of these herbs for yourself, consult with a herbalist or your physician first to make sure they are right for you and won’t interact adversely with any other medications you may be taking.
You may not see any results for a few weeks, but be patient and follow the advice of your herbalist. If you find that these herbs don’t seem to be working for you, try experimenting with a different herb or combination of herbs.