Some estimates suggest that as many as 20% of the population of the western world fail to meet their natural sleep requirements. We seem to have lost our respect for sleep, treating it as something we would gladly be rid of, and yet when we have insufficient sleep, we soon begin to suffer.
Lack of sleep can be a factor in hypertension, cardiovascular disease, depression, stress and increased risk of accidents, although it's important not to assume that sleep problems are going to lead to any of these things. However, for overall well-being of mind and body, it is worthwhile to attend to any sleep issues so that healthy sleep levels can be restored.
The term 'sleep disorder' covers a range of problems relating to sleep, including insomnia, over-sleeping, night terrors and bruxism (teeth grinding). If you are experiencing a sleep disorder, it is important to see your GP, who may be able to diagnose any medical conditions that might be causing the sleep-related problem. Your doctor may then suggest a referral to a specialist or recommend a form of treatment including hypnotherapy.
How hypnotherapy can help:
Hypnotherapy is often used to change unhelpful behavioural patterns, and this can certainly be a factor with some sleep problems, which are on some occasions simply the result of bad sleep-related habits, or poor 'sleep hygiene' as it is often called.
Hypnotherapy can also be a very efficient way of discovering underlying causes of sleep-related problems, such as stress and anxiety, which are not always immediately apparent to the person experiencing them. Such factors may be related to work, financial or relationship issues, or might even be related to worry over sleep itself. Even when stress and anxiety are not the underlying causes of sleep problems, they are quite likely to be present, as sleep deprivation soon causes them to build up, making sleep even more difficult.
Hypnosis is a very powerful tool to help people calm and relax themselves, and in addition, easy-to-use self-hypnosis techniques can be taught and then used whenever they are needed. In particular, self-hypnosis can be used as a 'bridge' to natural sleep, and for many people this is both simple and more flexible than repeatedly listening to a recording of a hypnosis session, (although I'm happy to provide a personalised recording for any client who wishes to have one).
Please note that, as with any talking therapy, results may vary from person to person.
Call me directly on 07831-693684 to make an appointment, or send me an e-mail (there's a 'contact me' link below).
Sessions are at Snowsfields Wellness Centre, near to London Bridge station, SE1, and cost £75.00.
A few things to consider or try:
Firstly, take a moment to consider what might be keeping you awake at night, it may be a physical pain, indigestion, etc., and tackling this will enable you to get to sleep. Sometimes it's easy to miss the primary cause and get caught up in the more troubling consequences.
When did the sleep problem begin? It can take a month to adjust to changes such as shift patterns or environmental factors such as traffic noise in a new bedroom. Or perhaps poor sleeping patterns developed whilst looking after a sick relative.
Check your routines and behaviours pre-bedtime, and see if there are any factors that could be changed to help you sleep well. Here are some common examples:
Avoid bright lighting for about an hour before going to bed, this includes computer, tablet and phone screens, which tend to be bright and blue coloured. This type of lighting may be inhibiting the release of sleep inducing hormones.
Try to establish a regular time to go to bed, and avoid doing mentally demanding activities for an hour or two beforehand, for example, video games, work or study.
If you're listening to music, choose slower tracks before going to bed: Your heart rate is influenced by the tempo of music, so fast music keeps the heart rate high and prevents the body from relaxing and preparing for sleep.
Develop a strong mental connection between the bed and sleeping, so avoid reading, watching TV, making phone calls, etc., from your bed. If you're not getting to sleep, get up and leave the bedroom for a set period of time.