Eight Hours of Pure Escapism

… and you can indulge in it every day.

While watching a neighbor wrestling with her toddler for the little one to finally go to sleep at 10 p.m., I pointed out that as children, we’ll do anything to resist going to sleep, and as adults, we can hardly wait to crawl into bed!

Instead of being anxious about going to sleep because you think you are going to miss something, consider how much you will miss the next day because you didn’t get enough sleep the night before. 

Getting that last item on the list done, forcing yourself to stay awake to finish one last task, fighting to stay awake comes at a price. Do you really want to afford that cost?

Migraines make it impossible to sleep – either you wake up with a headache (as I usually did), or you can’t go to sleep at regular bedtime, because the pain is so intense. It’s like being at a bad party until the wee hours: lack of sleep can trigger a migraine, and after you’ve recovered from a migraine that turned you into a temporary insomniac, if you decide to indulge in a sleep cure, then maybe getting too much sleep can also trigger a migraine! 

In your effort to get rid of migraine pain, you have a greater need than most to keep to a regular sleep schedule in order to strengthen your immune system and minimize stress on your body. 

There is plenty of expert research to help you. One of the countless riveting free online TED lectures introduced me to The Sleep Diplomat, Professor Matthew Walker. Professor Walker not only conducts research, he teaches and gives talks on how essential it is to get enough quality sleep. 

I urge you to invest some of your precious time and listen to Professor Walker’s easy-to-understand talks on just how – not just important, but vital – getting enough restful sleep is to you. Listening to some of Professor Walker’s talks taught me just how shockingly little I know. Statistically, we are not only overweight, we are chronically ‘underslept’ to the point of being dangerously sleep-deprived most of the time. Chronically losing sleep ages us.

Gain more control over your environment by beginning with your bedroom. Is the decor and color scheme restful and sleep-inducing? Save bright colors for other rooms in the house. Turn your bedroom into an oasis of muted colors, soft fabrics, and low noise levels. 

Do you have trouble falling asleep? While a prescription for a sleep aid would be helpful, try to train your body to be more self-reliant. In a popular series of books detailing the life of a Scots country veterinarian, the author recounted how his boss found the anatomical description of a sheep’s eye in a British medical text to be an effective sleeping pill. Curious, I decided to look it up (internet!) and sure enough, I can see how that would work! Others are seduced by leading man Matthew McConaughey’s low growl of a voice encouraging them to drift off thanks to his app Calm. Do you meditate? Repeating a mantra after lying down often works for me. How about softly playing evening birdsong and sounds of nature? 

Begin developing sleep-inducing habits a couple of hours before bedtime. Reduce liquid intake so that you don’t have to get up for nature’s call at night; to meditating. Brew a cup of a soothing herbal tea – peppermint is not only a digestive aid, it aids in relaxation. Take a walk after supper and end the day with a warm bath or shower. 

Here’s a little sugar-free dessert that will actually help you sleep: blend a no-cook pudding by combining chia seeds, powdered dark chocolate, mash half a ripe banana, some almond milk, and a half teaspoon of vanilla. Play around a bit with small quantities until you find the combination that suits your taste. The first four ingredients contain tryptophan, a precursor to serotonin and melatonin, both sleep-promoting hormones. Vanilla has calming effects on the nervous system. The chia seeds are rich in fiber that helps digestion overnight. Bonus! The theobromines in chocolate are a sleep aid, and chocolate gives one the sensation of being in love. What a delightful emotion to end your day…

Author

  • Carla Piringer

    Related to noted medical professionals, the author was afflicted with an inherited excruciating migraine condition, followed traditional medical and alternative therapies and has lived migraine-free for over 35 years. She shares her doctor-recommended method in her book, hoping to inspire sufferers to find significant pain relief.

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