Many of us experiencing trouble sleeping, whether it’s because of an issue in our diet, our stress level, or physical health in general. Keeping healthy habits generally leads to a better night’s rest, but sometimes it’s still hard to avoid a night of tossing and turning. This is when some of us turn to the Tylenol or Advil PM, but there’s many alternative to over-the-counter sleep medications, which can leave you feeling groggy well into the next day. We can turn to herbs to promote calm, rejuvenating sleep. This blog via The Hippy Homemaker expands upon lifestyle changes one can make for more fulfilling sleeps, as well as the various herbs that can calm the mind and body for when we need an extra, natural push.
There’s a lot to work with — here’s what they recommend:
- California Poppy – Used for centuries as a gentle sedative and pain reliever, the California poppy is more than just a pretty orange flower! Also used for anxiety and stress, studies are being done on the effectiveness of the California poppy for depression and other psychiatric problems. Not for use during pregnancy.
- Catnip – Known to help calm the nerves and relax the body, catnip is a great herb to use in sleepy teas and tinctures! A great herb for use with children, catnip is also a known tummy tamer, helping to soothe digestive issues that might be causing sleep distress.
- Chamomile – A well known herb used for centuries to calm the nerves and help with sleep problems, chamomile is a very tasty herb to add to any sleep tea and tincture! Not for use during pregnancy.
- Hops – Derived from the same plant that is used to make beer, hops have been used for centuries to treat nervous disorders, anxiety, and insomnia. Not for use during pregnancy.
- Lavender – One of the most well known herbs for use with stress, anxiety, pain relief, and insomnia, lavender is used in a variety of methods from herbal baths, essential oils, herbal pillows, and more! When making tea, lavender should be used sparingly as it’s very strong in flavor!
- Lemonbalm – A very relaxing herb that also aids in digestion, lemonbalm has been widely used since the dark ages for anxiety and sleep.
- Passionflower – Traditionally used for anxiety, insomnia, seizures, and hysteria, passionflower helps you to fall asleep and stay asleep! Not for use during pregnancy.
- Skullcap – Traditionally used to help quiet the mind, treat insomnia, and help with anxiety and irritability, skullcap works great in combination with valerian root and other sleepytime herbs. Not for use during pregnancy.
- Valerian root – One of my favorite herbs for pain and sleep, no sleep routine should be without it! If there is one herb you choose to use in a sleep tincture, it should be valerian root. Valerian root is not habit-forming, does not cause grogginess, and is an effective pain reliever including for headaches. Valerian root is also commonly used for stress and anxiety. Though valerian is very effective for more people, for a rare 10% of the population, it does not work and can cause the opposite effect. Not for use during pregnancy.