Chronic Insomnnia – How Can You Tell If You’re Suffering?

So you think you might have chronic insomnia? You’re not alone. Sleep deprivation has become as American as coffee shops, instant meals, and 24-hour lifestyles. As a matter of fact, it’s estimated that in the past 100 years, the average sleep time decreased by 20 percent! Then again, this statistic doesn’t really surprise me. Between longer work hours and seemingly never-ending chores, people sleep less more often. Toss in the added stimulants that television and the Internet provide, and we have a society of the chronically sleep deprived.

Now, how can you tell you have chronic insomnia? Here’s a simple and useful rule of thumb: you’ll know you have it if you sleep poorly on most nights for at least a month. Sleeplessness this prolonged is not good for your physical and mental health. Don’t wait for it to take its toll on your body; do something!

Don’t be too quick to pop sleeping pills, though. Studies show that even chronic insomnia can be treated through simple changes to your sleeping habits. Here are some tips to help you improve your quality of sleep.

1. Make sure your bedroom is well-ventilated and fairly cool temperate wise.

2. Do Not look at your clock – especially when you can’t sleep. Getting obsessed about how late it is can just make it harder to get some shut eye.

3. Don’t eat a huge meal just before you go to bed – try to have your last meal 4 – 5 hours before bedtime.

4. Avoid taking naps in the afternoon unless you have no choice.

5. Establish a sleeping pattern and stick to it – your body clock will thank you.

6. Go to bed only when you’re absolutely ready to sleep.

7. Do something to relax before you sleep – read, meditate or take a stroll around the block.

8. Try taking a hot bath about 2 hours before you sleep – this can help you sleep more soundly when bedtime comes.

9. Try to avoid strenuous exercise before bedtime.

You may find this hard to believe but the truth is, you can learn to improve your quality of sleep. Even if you have chronic insomnia, behavioral therapy can help you sleep better longer. Try these strategies the next time you have trouble sleeping. You have nothing to lose but a lot of precious hours of sleep to gain!