Insomnia is a common issue that can be a contributing factor in many menopause-related conditions. Fatigue and tiredness caused by lack of sleep can intensify irritability, mood swings, and increased stress levels, which can trigger heart palpitations and hot flashes. Many women have found that once they get their sleep under control and ensure 6 to 7 uninterrupted hours of sleep per night, then many of their menopause symptoms reduce significantly. Find out more about how insomnia affects your life and the steps you can take to minimize this.
- Insomnia can lead to fatigue, mood swings, increased stress level, and heart palpitations.
- The decreased estrogen levels during menopause can affect serotonin production and disrupt your sleep
- Reducing caffeine and alcohol intake and instead consuming herbal teas or calcium-rich drinks can help improve sleep.
- Create a comfortable sleeping environment and avoid electronic devices immediately before bed to minimize sleep disturbances.
How Does Insomnia Affect Your Everyday Life?
During menopause, the reduction in estrogen levels in the body affects the production of serotonin, which is a chemical that helps to produce melatonin (the hormone responsible for sleep). Maintaining a hormonal balance can improve natural sleep patterns return. Obviously, without embarking on a course of hormone replacement therapy, this is not always possible and alternative methods of re-establishing a healthy sleep pattern need to be explored. Try to avoid long-term use of sleeping tablets, as these can lead to addiction and result in more problems. By getting hot flashes or night sweats under control and using natural methods you should soon be able to regain your natural sleep cycle.
What You Can Do to Cope With Insomnia
Creating a comfortable sleep environment: If your mattress is old and worn, consider replacing it with a new one. Additionally, opt for cotton sheets and night clothes as these will help keep you cool. Set the thermostat to around 5 degrees cooler than normal, this should help to keep night sweats to the minimum. The more comfortable you are the easier it will be to sleep.
Avoid electronic devices: If you have a television in your room, move it out to another room and try to avoid reading in bed, as these can stimulate the brain and hinder sleep. Finally, get into a simple routine and try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.
Make dietary changes: Changing your diet can play a large part in curing insomnia. Avoid or reduce caffeine and alcohol intake, especially 8 hours before you go to bed. as the effects of caffeine can last for several hours and alcohol tends to disrupt sleep. Drinking calcium-rich beverages, like hot milky drinks with no sugar, an hour or so before bed can promote sleep. Alternatively, try herbal teas like peppermint or chamomile.
Finally, repeating a string of numbers in your head can help a lot. The constant repetition can help the brain stimulate theta waves which occur when you are drowsy. If you have ever driven a long distance on a freeway and suddenly can’t remember the last few miles that was probably the brain in theta wave mode. By entering into this state sleep should come naturally. Menopause insomnia is treatable with patience and practice.
The content of this article should not be considered professional medical advice. Exercise due diligence when seeking relevant health information. Always consult your healthcare provider before making any medical decisions.