Dealing with stress and current lifestyle, more and more people suffer from insomnia. This sleep disorder is characterized by difficulty falling asleep or early awakening, which negatively impacts the health but also the quality of life. We propose in this article an effective trick to fall asleep in just a minute!
Insomnia is the most common sleep disorder, affecting over 20% of the population. It is manifested by difficulty getting adequate sleep. The insomniac person has trouble falling asleep at night or wakes up frequently during the night, which negatively effects their health and productivity! Indeed, a person who sleeps badly or not enough will be very tired the next day and will have difficulty concentrating. Lack of sleep also impacts the mood and causes irritability and aggression.
Long-term insomnia can also be linked to more serious health problems, including type 2 diabetes. According to a study presented during the American Diabetes Congress in Philadelphia, people who suffer from insomnia have more risk of becoming diabetic or obese. The study was conducted on 27 volunteers, including 14 and 13 who normally slept less than 6.5 hours a night. After 8 days of observation, the researchers found that the volunteers who slept less, secreted insulin by 40% more compared to the second group. Thus, lack of sleep would affect the action of insulin, which can lead to type 2 diabetes.
What are the risk factors of insomnia?
Above all, we must know that insomnia is a symptom and not a disease. That is to say, to treat it, we must find the source of the problem.
Stress and anxiety are the most common causes of insomnia. But other psychological factors such as depression or other diseases can also cause lack of sleep.
Environmental factors may also have an effect on sleep, especially light, noise and a very high or very low temperature.
In addition, consumption of alcohol, drugs or certain medications and smoking are all factors that increase the risk of insomnia.
Types of insomnia
Although the symptoms and consequences of insomnia are the same, there are two types of insomnia:
This form of insomnia is often related to a certain situation, namely: work stress, poor sleep hygiene, some change… The occasional insomnia can last from days to weeks.
Chronic insomnia is manifested by difficulty sleeping several nights a week for several months. This type of insomnia is usually due to health problems or psychological problems such as depression. Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s may also be the cause of chronic insomnia.
There are different treatments to fight insomnia, and should be adapted to each case and situation. Some people will need to change some habits in their routine before they go to bed, while others will be administering medicines.
4-7-8 breathing technique
However, there is a very simple technique, which involves no medical intervention to overcome insomnia and fall asleep quickly. This is the 4-7-8 breathing technique, developed by Dr. Andrew Weil.
How it works?
The 4-7-8 method is a breathing technique that requires no equipment, only takes a few seconds and can be performed anywhere.
To do this exercise, you can put yourself in any position, but it is preferable sitting, back straight.
• Start with a deep exhale through the mouth.
• Then close the mouth and slowly inhale through your nose, counting to four.
• Now hold your breath and count to seven.
• Exhale through your mouth and count to eight.
Then make a short break. Repeat the exercise 3 more times, for a total of four series.
Dr. Andrew Weil recommends repeating this exercise at least 2 times a day, but still you shouldn’t do it excessively. He advises not to exceed 4 series per session, during the first month. However, in the second month, you can go up to 8 series.
This technique calms the nervous system, slows the heart rate and promotes relaxation to fall asleep more easily. It can also help manage stress.