Insomnia was my enemy.
It ruined many days and nights before it was brought under control.
Once I experienced sleeplessness, it became a vicious cycle.
I’d lie in bed, worried I wouldn’t get enough sleep. This persistent thought kept me awake.
Then the sun started to come up.
Under normal circumstances, I’d be happy to see a new day. But not when I was tossing and turning the night away.
Here’s what often happened. About 45 minutes before I needed to get out of bed, sleep came. But I didn’t get enough sleep.
So I woke up feeling worse than ever. This shaky, disconnected feeling continued all day.
Come nightfall, the cycle started all over again.
Natural Home Remedies for Insomnia
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Sometimes, I’d even try to go to bed hours before I was supposed to, hoping sleep would come. It didn’t.
Chronic insomnia is miserable. But, for me, I’ve found relief with natural essential oils and various herbal remedies.
Help Insomnia with Natural Remedies
The only real help I’ve found for my chronic insomnia is natural remedies. (Once, a long time ago, I took sleeping pills for about a week. At the end of the week, my sleeping problem still hadn’t improved.)
Please understand I’m not a doctor. So I can’t give medical advice or claim that anything I did to help me get the rest I needed will work for you. All I can do is share my own story of how I’m now able to sleep better, thanks to various natural remedies.
Sleeping pills don’t seem to solve the underlying metabolic imbalances or emotional upsets. These pills can also be addictive, and they probably don’t lead to quality sleep, the kind your body needs to detoxify itself. Taking them over the long term means you’re likely moving in the wrong direction, away from better health. A 2012 British study also found sleeping pills were linked to a higher risk of cancer. (See link to study below.)
What Essential Oils Help Insomnia?
Fortunately, more natural options exist. I used a number of them, including classical homeopathy, Bach flower remedies (a gentler form of homeopathy), various herbal sleep aids and an acupressure technique called “tapping.” What helped me the most, though, was essential oils. Because of these oils, I only have occasional insomnia.
I use a number of single essential oils to help me sleep. They all seem to work better if I rotate them. This means I don’t use the same oil too many nights in a row. Usually oils work best for me if I use them only for two or three nights. Then I take a break from them and use another oil.
Two of my favorite oils for sleep and relaxation are lavender essential oil and clary sage essential oil. I like to order my oils online because of the volume. If I buy them in a health food store I don’t know how long they’ve been sitting on the shelf. Essential oils have a limited shelf life of between one to six years. This depends upon how they are stored, and also the particular oil.
Essential Oils that Promote Sleep
For years, I had a new bedtime ritual. Right before I hit the pillow, I sprinkled a few drops of essential oil on a cloth that I keep by my pillow. Some nights I use lavender. Many people swear by this oil. I like it, but I’ve found that clary sage works really well too.
Anyway, I’ve sprinkled a mix of essential oils on this cloth, essentially making a blend. Aromatherapists often recommend using several oils together because they create a certain synergy, each making the other more potent.
Essential Oil Blends That Can Fight Insomnia
It’s hard to believe that an aromatic oil can make such a difference. But these oils have been used for centuries to address a wide range of conditions, including anxiety. They’re making a comeback, because a growing number of people are seeking safe, drug-free alternatives.
In addition to using single oils, such as lavender essential oil, I’ve owned a number of sleep and relaxation blends. It’s believed that blends can work even better than singles. This is due to the theory of synergy. Combining multiple oils may result in a more potent relaxation formula.
The Good Night Synergy Blend contains sleep-inducing clary sage and lavender, as well as chamomile, copaiba, Peru balsam, sandlewood and sweet marjoram. These additional oils are also good sleep remedies. Aromatherapists like to combine oils, because it’s believed they create a more effective synergy.
Edens Garden oils are made by a trusted company. They are 100 pure. Edens Garden oils are not sold through multi-level marketing distribution networks, and I consider them an excellent alternative to MLM oils.
Bach Remedies for Anxiety
In addition to using different essential oils every night, I’ve also periodically taken Bach Flower remedies. These are homeopathic essences made from flowers, and they are more gentle than regular homeopathy. What I especially like about flower remedies is that you don’t necessarily need to consult with a professional homeopath before taking them.
There are only 38 Bach remedies, and each one corresponds to a specific emotional state. Self diagnosis is easy, because we tend to know ourselves, and any particular negative emotions we may be feeling.
If you make a mistake, it’s not big deal. These soothing remedies won’t hurt you, and very well might help. I’ve found great relief with Bach remedies, and I highly recommend them.
Herbs for Sleeplessness
God has given us many natural plant-based sleep aids, which we seem to need now more than ever. Modern life is extremely stressful as we face a number of conditions our ancestors never would have dreamed of.
When you’re stressed, your adrenal glands may become depleted. This can result in excess cortisol, which can affect your sleep patterns.
Chamomile tea is a popular bedtime beverage because it contains natural sedatives. Also, there’s something especially relaxing about drinking tea at night. Stash is an American company based in Portland, Oregon and the package you see below contains 100 tea bags to help you get many nights of restful slumber.
Tapping for Insomnia
It might sound crazy, but I credit yet another alternative therapy with helping to get my body into a state where I can sleep better. This is the Emotional Freedom Technique, otherwise known as “tapping.”
Using acupressure, you tap on various meridians located on your head, face, shoulder and torso. Some people recite affirmations while they tap. I found these too silly. I’d simply say to myself that everything is going to be okay and that this problem was going to leave. As a Catholic, sometimes I’d even say a prayer while I tapped.
It’s hard to believe something so simple can be so helpful. But it’s one of those things you probably won’t believe until you try it. There is a lot of information about tapping on the Internet.
All Natural Sleeping Aids
Other things you may want to try include getting enough exercise and eating unprocessed organic foods, which contain the nutrients your body needs for good health.
Foods rich in tryptophan are considered good sleep aids. This amino acid is what the body needs to produce melatonin, a hormone that regulates the sleep cycle.
Update: This post was originally published several years ago, as my long battle with insomnia was finally coming to an end. Since then I’ve also found that watching a video on my computer is a great sleep aid. That’s because I forget about my problems and just tune into the show. I go to bed with the express intent of watching a video, not sleeping.
I can’t promise this will work for anyone else. But it works for me.
However, it also flies in the fact of most natural sleep advice to avoid blue light.
Sometimes, though, “rules” are meant to be broken. It’s also important to remember that we’re all different.
For me, watching a video as I fall asleep has become a great “natural” sleep aid. (If you sleep next to someone, you can turn down the volume and watch it with closed captions.)
These statements have not been approved by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
This article is written for discussion purposes only, and is not to be taken as medical advice. People with health concerns should discuss them with a doctor. Women who are pregnant or nursing should not use herbal remedies, essential oils or homeopathic remedies, unless directed to do so by a healthcare professional.
For Additional Reading
British Study on Sleeping Pills
My Natural Sleep Course
Insomnia was such a huge part of my life for so many years. It ruined my life for so many years. But I’m sleeping really well now. Thanks to a lot of natural remedies and a different mindset. I know how difficult it is not to be able to sleep. So I designed an easy-to-follow online course that explains all the things I did, to train my body to sleep again.
I didn’t use sleeping pills. I’m not a medical professional. The course is meant to tell you about all the various sleep remedies available, so you can share this information with your doctor. I hope this information helps. Click on the image below if you’d like to learn more about this course.
Natural Sleep Remedies Without Drugs