Everybody has trouble sleeping from time to time. Usually putting into place some proper sleep hygiene practices resolves most issues for most people. But for some, no matter what they try, their sleep problems persist.
The internet is full of generic advice to improve sleep performance, but for many people this simply isn’t enough. The problem has become chronic and needs medical attention.
For some people, falling asleep is the issue. They feel too wired at night to nod off, even if they have been feeling tired all day long.
Others find they wake during the middle of the night or early in the morning and they simply can’t get back to sleep. Over time these short durations of sleep add up and the negative effects are felt.
The duration and quality of your sleep profoundly affects your mood, energy and concentration. You need the right balance of deep sleep and REM to optimise your brain and nervous function.
People will generally visit their doctor to resolve their sleeping trouble. Sadly, conventional medicine is ill equipped to help.
Apart from more generic advise the only real weapons in a doctor’s arsenal are sleeping pills. There are various brands but many come with unwanted side-effects such as feeling like a zombie the next day.
Even if you find a brand that agrees with you and helps you to sleep, they are all addictive. You now have two problems. You have an addiction to sleeping pills and you still have whatever was causing the sleeping issue to begin with in first place.
The problem is that conventional medicine follows a diagnose and prescribe model. Drugs are prescribed to deal solely with the presenting symptoms and the question is never asked as to what’s causing this person’s sleeping trouble to begin with.
Sleeping pills are a sledgehammer approach when what’s needed is a deeper and more intimate analysis of the problem.
How is the patient’s neurochemistry? How are levels of important hormones and neurotransmitters like melatonin, GABA, histamine and noradrenaline? How are their stress levels? What other health issues are there that may be affecting these things?
By failing to ask these questions the conventional model of medicine fails to get to the root cause of insomnia. By not looking “under the hood” it can’t make any real and lasting change to a person’s sleep health.
Instead of spending your life medicating in order to cope with insomnia, try the functional medicine approach which gets to the “root cause” of your sleeping issues and restores your body to excellent health so that you sleep soundly naturally.