08-27-2020 General

Natural Sleep Hacks for a Better Night's Rest

Natural Sleep Methods | America's Pharmacy

For 70 million people in the US, restful sleep is often unattainable.1 According to the CDC, adults need at least seven hours of sleep per night for optimal health and well-being.2 But more than a third of US adults3 aren’t getting enough and a staggering 164 million4 Americans struggle with sleep at least one night each week. So how do Americans solve this problem? One in eight of us resort to sleeping pills, even though due to the risk of addiction or dependency, they are not recommended for regular use5. So, what can you do? Here are two time-tested natural tools to help you sleep more soundly.

Rest with Your Circadian Rhythm

Our ancestors didn’t have smartphones to tell them what time it was. Instead, they relied on the light of the day. They would wake up when it was light and go to sleep when it was dark. Generations of this ingrained natural circadian rhythm has helped human beings regulate their sleep and wake cycles. The circadian rhythm is essentially your body’s natural clock; the rhythmic release of hormones and neurotransmitters that promote feelings of tiredness in the evenings and energy in the morning. Use this to your advantage! The effectiveness of our circadian rhythm can often be interrupted due to our lifestyle, diet or genetic factors. For example, studies like this one published by the Journal of Applied Physiology8 show that blue light exposure -- such as the light from your smartphone or TV -- suppresses melatonin release. Other studies show melatonin naturally decreases with age,9 whether you drink coffee,10 if you smoke,11 among other variables. So, if you think you need a help falling asleep, try changing your wind-down routine. Cut the caffeine from your afternoon beverages, cut back your screen time in the evenings, and dim the lights an hour before bed.

Mellow Sleep with Melatonin

Melatonin is a popular dietary supplement that is used most commonly as a natural sleep aid. It is a naturally occurring hormone produced by the pineal gland in your brain.Melatonin is released by the pineal gland in the evenings, when the sky gets dark and it is time for you to fall asleep. The melatonin release promotes feelings of drowsiness, sleepiness, and relaxation; creating a perfect environment for deep, restful sleep. If you’re struggling with sleep, adding in a melatonin supplement can help you fall and stay asleep through the night. The ideal melatonin dosage ranges from 0.5 to 10 mg per day. If you’re new to melatonin, it’s a good idea to start with a lower dose to see how your body responds. Always read the label for precise recommendations as not all melatonin supplements are the same. Take melatonin 30 minutes before bedtime and avoid screen exposure for the best effects, you will start to feel sleepy, allowing you to easily drift into a deep sleep.

Save on Sleep Medications

Still struggling to get a good night’s rest? Talk to your doctor about prescription sleep aids. America’s Pharmacy can help you save with free prescription discounts and an Rx discount card.

 

SOURCES:

  1. https://www.sleepadvisor.org/sleep-statistics/
  2. https://www.cdc.gov/sleep/data_statistics.html
  3. https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2016/p0215-enough-sleep.html
  4. https://www.nbcnews.com/better/lifestyle/14-smart-products-help-you-fall-asleep-faster- ncna765111
  5. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/databriefs/db127.htm
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3676828/
  7. https://academic.oup.com/jcem/article-abstract/75/2/447/2649287
  8. https://journals.physiology.org/doi/full/10.1152/japplphysiol.01413.2009
  9. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1600-079X.1986.tb00760.x
  10. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1389945702000151
  11. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1191/0748233705th211oa