Here's How to Use Mindfulness Meditation to Sleep
Better Sleep is essential for health and wellbeing. When you don't sleep enough, you feel stressed. Stress can also make it difficult for you to sleep. When you're stressed, you may find it hard to relax at night. You may stay awake with anxious thoughts, or wake up in the middle of the night feeling stress or worry.
With sleep deprivation, stress only gets worse. You show more signs of stress and your body and mind struggle to recover from the stress of the day. With mindfulness meditation, you can relieve the effects of stress and get better, more restorative sleep.
Why You Can't Sleep When You're Feeling Stressed
Stress stimulates your mind and body, which is the opposite of the relaxation you need to calm down and drift off to sleep. When you're feeling stressed, your mind and body are in a state of hyperarousal, and higher levels of stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline are released, while production of serotonin, a hormone that helps you feel tired, is reduced. You may feel agitated, find it difficult to control your thoughts, and experience anxiety, all of which can make it hard to sleep soundly.
How Meditation Can Help You Sleep Better
Meditation can be used to trigger the relaxation response. When you trigger the relaxation response, your mind and body feel calmer. It can counteract the effect of stress on your body, reduce psychological distress, decrease oxygen consumption, and reduce blood pressure. The relaxation response can also be used to mitigate the effects of insomnia.
You can support healthy sleep habits with meditation, using it as a calming practice during the day or before bed. Practiced regularly, mindfulness meditation can help to improve sleep quality while reducing insomnia, fatigue, and depression.
Using Meditation to Sleep Well and Relieve Stress
Mindfulness meditation can be used to promote relaxation and healthy sleep. It should be practiced regularly, but meditation is particularly helpful when you're feeling especially stressed or sleep deprived.
About the Author
Sarah Johnson represents Community Relations for Tuck Sleep, a non-commercial community devoted to improving sleep hygiene, health and wellness through the creation and dissemination of comprehensive, unbiased, free web-based resources. Tuck has been featured on NBC News, Lifehacker, and Radiolab and is referenced by many colleges/universities and sleep organizations across the web.
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