You Need To Relax In Order To Sleep
Are you having trouble sleeping? Do you go to bed at night and lie there unable to drop off? Or perhaps you fall asleep easily but wake again a few hours later?
Insomnia can really put a damper on your days; nothing is quite so easy when you are a tired.Insomnia is very common in every age group and it is estimated that around 1 in 5 adults of all ages suffer from insomnia.
Getting to sleep and staying asleep can become even more of a problem for us as we get older too. Studies show that older adults still need an average of 7 to 8 hours every night but it is harder to get after the age of about 65.
So what is the solution to insomnia or poor sleep? There are of course some sensible steps you need to take and you have probably already taken them. For example cutting out drinks that contain caffeine in the evenings, taking regular exercise and establishing a regular bedtime routine, will make a difference to how you sleep. These lifestyle measures are known as sleep hygiene
But what if what if you have taken all these steps to beat your insomnia and you are still lying awake in the wee small hours? Chances are you need to relax and you need some help with achieving relaxation. It isn’t enough to be told to ’just relax’ because that is easier said than done. It becomes such a habit to hold our muscles in that we don’t even notice it. Lying in bed trying to sleep we may be totally unaware that our neck muscles are tense, that we are clenching our jaws, that our shoulders are tight.
How to Achieve Relaxation
There are several techniques that can be used to help with this problem. The main thing such a technique must do is to calm you and stop the mind chatter. It must help you to relax your body because muscles tend to be held very tightly when we are stressed. Progressive muscle relaxation and autogenic relaxation are both a great help in dealing with tense muscles. Taking up the practice of daily meditation can also help you to release anxiety and become more relaxed and this will improve your sleep. But there is another therapy that you may not have heard about. It is called brainwave entrainment. Brainwave entrainment is delivered via an audio CD that you listen to in bed when you are ready to sleep.
How Can Brainwave Entrainment Help You Relax?
Brainwave entrainment (BWE) can be used to relax you by changing the rate at which your brain waves pulse. The sounds coax your brain into slowing down and moving into the type of brainwave activity associated with relaxation and sleep. When this happens the rest of your body follows and relaxes.
Sleep researchers have found that as you listen to a specially constructed audio of this kind your brainwaves and other bodily processes began to slow down. Heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature, respiration rate all slow down and muscle tension is reduced. The listener becomes very deeply relaxed and is able to fall asleep. This is the process that is used on the Sleep Sound CDs to help you to overcome insomnia. The Sleep Sound program also includes a daily meditation CD.
How Brainwave Entrainment WorksListening to brainwave entrainment for sleep
The brain is made up of billions of cells, called neurones. As they communicate with each other they produce electricity which can be measured using an EEG machine (electroencephalogram). The EEG shows a wave like pattern which changes in shape depending on our activities.
When we are alert and busy brain activity is faster and the waves closer together. When we are very relaxed or falling asleep they are much slower and further apart. BWE can change the rate at which the brain waves are produced. It uses sound or light to present a different rhythm to the brain.
It has been shown in many studies, starting in the 1930s, that the brain will alter its rhythm and synchronize with the tone or beat it hears. “Entrainment” simply means that the brain follows or synchronizes with the new beat. So for example, to induce sleep we can slow the brain waves so that they produce a slower more relaxed wave pattern. We use the wave pattern of sleep to induce the brain to slow down into a sleep state.
The power of sound has always been known. Tribal drums beat a regular rhythm to send the listeners into a mystical state. That’s brainwave entrainment too. The state induced just depends on the rhythm you hear. In the sleep audios you will be listening to a slow beat or tone associated with sleep.