Thursday, September 17, 2015

Sleeplessness and its natural-yogic treatment

Sleeplessness and its natural-yogic treatment

Sleeplessness and its natural-yogic treatment

Dr. Shirley Telles and Shivangi Pathak, Patanjali Research Department, Patanjali Yogpeeth, Haridwar

Sleep is very important for life long good health. According to National Sleep Institute, sleep is necessary for proper function of a person's body.
  • Sleep keeps our heart healthy. 
  • Reduces tension. l Controls the body's excitements.
  • Keeps us active. 
  • Improves our memory.
  • Controls our weight. 
  • Improves immune system of the body. 
  • Controls the danger from depression. 
  • Rejuvenates our body.
There are five stages of sleep. The first two stages are called NREM (Non-rapid eye movement) and REM (Rapid eye movement). Four stages are concerned to NREM stage and fifth one comes under REM.

a. First stage: It is the primary stage of sleep. In this stage, a bit light sleep happens, and it is the stage between sleep and wake up. Th e span of this stage happens to be 5-10 minutes.

b. Second stage: In this stage of sleep, the body temperature begins to go down, heart beat also declines, span of this stage is 20 minutes.

c. Third stage: This is the stage when a person moves from light sleep to deem sleep stage.

d. Fourth stage: This is the stage when a person is in deep sleep. Its span is 30 minutes. It is this stage when a person urinates on the bed or walks while in the stage of sleeping.

e. REM (Rapid Eye Movement) : Th is is the fifth stage of sleep, most of dreams come in this stage.

During this stage, breathing and activities of mind increases while the muscles become very calm.

In the situation of sleeplessness: Many people complain about their sleeplessness. Due to lack of sleep your whole day's activities , hunger, balance and your immune system are badly hit. It increases the chances of being caught by the diseases. Excess of sleep causes heart related diseases, diabetes, obesity, and also on immune system. It also increases chances of many other diseases. Excess sleep is also bad for heart, may lead to diseases like diabetes, obesity and can also cause memory related problems. Therefore, for good health we should take sufficient sleep. Here we have a chart which presents age-wise sleeping hours.

Age limit Sleeping hours

  • 2 month old child - 12-18 hours
  • 3 months to 1 year - 14-15 hours
  • 1 year to three years- 12-14 years
  • 3-5 years - 11-13 hours
  • 5-12 years- 10-11 hours
  • 12-18 hours- 85-10 hours
  • Above 18- 7.5-9 hours

If sufficient sleep is not taken, the chances of early aging grows and a person feels anxiety while sleep repairs the cells of our body and brings the toxicants out of our body. Therefore we must take at least 6-8 hours sleep regularly.

Yoga is a solution 

If you are suffering from the problem of sleeplessness or insomnia, yoga can be a best solution. Yoga improves blood circulation in the body. It balances our nervous system, brings out toxic substances out of our body and rejuvenates it. Regular yoga is effective to cure many diseases like sleeplessness, irregular sleep, reduces tension of whole day and helps us to take sound sleep in the night.

 The yoga which is done with awareness they help to restore chemicals of the brain and keeps it in balanced state. It is a must that a person should maintain the state of his breath. Pranayam is also useful in curing insomnia. Yoga should be practised in the guidance of a trained yoga teacher.

Balanced life style:
Life style and sleep are co-related as bad bad life style affects the quality of your sleep and this way the whole sleep is disturbed. Change in lifestyle is a process which takes time. If once we are ready for change, even then it is difficult to follow the path of change. Below is some methods how to bring change in the life style which is a must for good sleep.

Decide a definite time to go to sleep.
  • Build a peaceful ambience for good sleep.
  • Make sure that the bed is comfortable.
  • Regular exercise is a must.
  • Before going to bed, avoid taking any energy drink like tea, coffee, etc.
  • Take light meal in dinner.
  • Avoid smoking.
  • Ensure composure of your body before going to bed.
  • Make yourself free from anxiety.
  • Avoid stress on the bed and ensure composure of your mind.
Balanced diet is necessary

Food also plays a vital role in this regard. Healthy food helps build healthy cells and also ensures regular functions of the body organs. 

Following are some food which are a must for good sleep:
Complex carbohydrates: Whole grain flour's chapaties- Brown rice, avoid carbohydrates like cake, cookies, pastries and other sugar rich food which reduce the level of serotorin level which has a bad impact on sleep. Heart healthy food: Unsaturated fats, like Alsi oil, soya oil, walnut oil and sunfl ower oil maintain good health of heart and increases the level of serotorim.

We should avoid taking saturated and trans fats and the food made of them. Avoid taking french fry, potato chips and other such snack foods.

Beverages: Some drinks increases duration of sleep and can also decrease it, before going to bed, it will be good to take milk or herbal tea.

Fresh herbs: Healthy herbal medicines are effective to maintain the composure of our body. For example sage is a fragrant herb. Moreover, avoid taking green or red chilly in the night as they cause the excitement of the body.

Other methods for good sleep:
  • Some other methods can help us to take good sleep.
  • Avoid practise of Bhastrika pranayam in the late night. Its practise produces a lot of energy which many cause disturbance in the sleep.
  • One should also avoid watching exciting TV programmes or films in the night as they can disturb your sleep. Instead, it will be better to listen soft music, mantras, reading books etc.
  • We need to develop our own sleeping style as it is never advisable to sleep in day time. It disturbs our biological clock. Ideally, it is better to sleep for half an hour in the day and eight hours in the night.
  • Before going to bed in the night one should review his whole day's activities and his bed should be cleaned till the level of satisfaction.
  • One should take meal by 8.30 pm and go to bed after two hours.
  • If you had any quarrel in the family, it is better to fix it before going to bed.
  • One should avoid using exciting stuff s before going to bed especially you have the problem of sleeplessness.
  • This way yoga, good lifestyle, good food habit, etc we can improve the quality of sleep and hence can enjoy a happy and peaceful life.


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