Have you ever experienced the frustration of waking up multiple times in the night, longing for uninterrupted hours of rest? And you might find yourself worrying that something is wrong, leading to more anxiety and lost hours of sleep. You're not alone. But here's the reassuring truth: waking during the night is perfectly normal.
Our sleep is a complex symphony of cycles, from light sleep, to deep sleep and then REM sleep (when we dream). From the age of 4 months old, each sleep cycle lasts around 1.5 hours. So actually we all wake up at the end of a sleep cycle, but most of the time we don't have any memory of it, because we simply roll over and go back to sleep.
Waking in the night becomes a challenge though, when we struggle to fall back to sleep, and find ourselves staring at the ceiling in frustration. If this sounds familiar, rest assured, you're in good company. In this blog, we'll explore ways to reclaim those precious moments of rest after those midnight awakenings.
As someone that has struggled with insomnia and hours spent awake at night, I have found some of these strategies the most helpful for getting back to sleep at night...
1. "This Is Normal"
One of the most helpful things I tell myself when I wake in the night is "this is normal". That might sound silly, but knowing that waking is normal has helped reduce my anxiety around night wake-ups, and allows me to relax and fall back to sleep more quickly. I spent years believing I was supposed to "sleep through the night", and it caused me a lot of stress and made me feel like my sleep was broken.
2. Apply Sleepy Herbs
I formulated Sleep Balm with my favourite and most effective relaxing and sedative herbs so I could keep it by my bedside, and apply to my wrists and neck when I woke in the night. Once applied, I can relax knowing the herbs are being absorbed and working their sleepy magic to help me fall back to sleep. Read what other people say about Sleep Balm here.
3. Write Your Worries Down
If I have some worries, anxieties or to-do lists that are bothering me before bedtime, I take a moment before I start my bedtime routine, to write them down. I list them so I know that I won't forget them, but can put them aside until tomorrow. That way I can allow myself to relax into sleep mode without my to do list intruding. If you find yourself waking in the night with a busy mind, keep a notepad by your bed and scribble it down so that you can worry about it tomorrow. Now is the time for sleep.
4. Avoid Blue Light
When you wake at night, as tempting as it is to reach for your phone and check the time or emails, the blue light actually supresses your melatonin (the sleep hormone), and can make it harder to get back to sleep. So resist the urge to minimise wake time.
5. Break The Cycle
I know when I was in the worst depths of insomnia, I could find myself obsessing about the fact I was awake and not sleeping. And this just made it impossible to get back to sleep. So I found breaking the thought pattern by getting up and having a glass of water, or reading a soothing book by warm lamp light could help shift my mindset until I started feeling sleepy again and could head back to bed.
6. Practice Relaxation Techniques
Another thing you can do if you find yourself feeling stressed or anxious when waking in the night, is to find a relaxation exercise that helps you calm back down so you can drift off to sleep. You could try...
- Deep Breathing: Take slow, deep breaths to calm your nervous system. Inhale deeply through your nose, hold for a few seconds, and exhale slowly through your mouth.
- Progressive Muscle Relaxation: Starting from your toes, tense and then relax each muscle group in your body. This promotes physical relaxation, easing tension that may be keeping you awake.
- Mindfulness Meditation: Focus your attention on your breath or a calming image. Acknowledge any thoughts without judgment, and gently bring your focus back to your chosen point of concentration.
I hope the news that your night waking is actually perfectly normal brings you some comfort, and that these tips can help you get back to sleep faster tonight!
Here's what some of our lovely customers have to say about Sleep Balm:
This really works! ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
"I am so surprised by this, Sleep Balm actually works. A very subtle lemon scent, easy to use and it provides a deeper sleep and easier to fall asleep. I originally bought it for my Mother who can't take sleeping tablets or herbal supplements and it worked for her so I tried it - I would highly recommend buying. Thank you." - Elaine
"This is the best!!! I always have trouble sleeping but since using this Sleep Balm I have been sleeping 100% better. Would recommend 👌." - Judy
Miracle Balm! ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
"Honestly the best Sleep Balm out there and works wonders. It’s become part of the nightly routine. Amazing product!" - Amale