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  • Writer's pictureDr. Ni Li, ND MSc

Natural Treatments for Sleep and Anxiety


Sleep and Anxiety, Insomnia, Natural treatments

Have you ever had trouble sleeping at night, felt anxious, and had racing thoughts? It usually happens to me when I’m under high stress. Whether it is temporary or chronic, some natural treatments can be helpful to you. I am going to introduce some commonly used ones. However, every individual is different. The choice of therapy and dosage varies accordingly. So please consult a doctor to determine what is most suitable for you.


Table of Contents



Melatonin


Melatonin may be the best-known natural product associated with sleep. It is a hormone secreted by the body that increases as the evening progresses. When a certain level has reached, we feel sleepy. It is often used to adjust the circadian rhythm, for example, to treat jet lag, or to adjust your sleep time.


As we grow older, the secretion of melatonin also gradually decreases. It may explain why we can sleep soundly no matter what when we are young. However, when we get older, we are more likely to have sleep problems, such as trouble falling asleep, waking up frequently, or short sleep duration.


Magnesium


Magnesium can relax our body and mind, especially when we are under stress, with some anxiety or depression, and muscle tension. So how do you know if you have muscle tension? You can pay attention to whether you have stiff shoulders and neck, fist clenching, or jaw clenching. Some people may also start to grind their teeth at night.


In addition, the elderly are at risk of magnesium deficiency, which may be due to insufficient nutritional intake, taking multiple drugs, and weakened gastrointestinal functions. Therefore, if the elderly have sleep problems, muscle weakness, fatigue, hyperemotionality, and cognitive impairment, they may have a magnesium deficiency.


Herbs


Some herbal products can calm the mind and help with sleep. Among them, some common ones are chamomile, passionflower, and valerian. They can come in teas, capsules, tablets, or tinctures. I myself like to brew a cup of hot tea before bed to help me relax and fall asleep.


Sleep Hygiene


It means good sleep habits. Are you surrounded by electronics, stimulated by sound and light from morning to night? However, we need a relaxed and calm state to promote sleep. Therefore, try to put away electronics one hour before going to bed. Instead, do some low-stimulating activities, such as reading, writing a diary, taking a bath, meditating, and listening to relaxing music. Moreover, have a regular schedule for getting up and going to bed. It helps set our internal biological clock.


Other Natural Treatments


In addition, other natural treatments may be suitable for you, such as Traditional Chinese Medicine, acupuncture, light therapy, sound therapy, and Cranial Electrical Stimulation. Please consult a naturopathic doctor to make an individualized plan for you.


If you have any questions or feedback, please leave a comment below. Or message me directly on Facebook Messenger or WeChat (ID: DrLi_ND).


Disclaimer: The information on this website is for educational/informational purposes only, and not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Learn more.


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