You Need Restorative Sleep to Maintain Vital Health
Restorative sleep is essential for maintaining vital health.
Matthew Walker, PHD, head of the Sleep and Neuroimaging Laboratory at the University of California Berkeley says “Every one of the major diseases that are killing us in first world nations – from diabetes to obesity to Alzheimer’s to cancer, have strong causal links to lack of sleep.”
It is the deterioration of deep (non REM) sleep, that is a problem. As we age, we naturally experience sleep deterioration and it starts as early as our mid thirties. Other unhealthy habits of a modern, busy, lifestyle also are not conducive to restorative sleep.
With this in mind, it is very important to cultivate healthy sleep hygiene to maintain longer periods of deep sleep.
Cultivating Healthy Sleep Hygiene
Incorporate more self-care into your routine. Include exercise, good nutrition, mindfulness, aromatherapy and gratitude practices.
Reduce stimulants such as caffeine, alcohol, smart phones and other technology during the evening.
Sleep expert Claudia Toth advises “you don’t need to take medicine to deal with insomnia, in the long run, behavioral therapy tends to be a more effective approach. ” She recommends to create a low stress sleep inducing environment while allowing the mind to relax, wind down, and drift slowly into sleep.”
For a natural approach, try using essential oils and aromatherapy to calm your mind and body for a more restorative sleep.
Aromatherapy for Restorative Sleep
Using essential oils in your daily regime is an effective tool in a holistic approach to improving quality sleep.
Of all the natural remedies for improved sleep, essential oils have received the most positive attention in clinical trials and studies. The active molecules in essential oils interact directly with the nervous and endocrine systems. This promotes calm, pain relief and balance to mind and body.
The great thing about essential oils is that they are so easy to incorporate into your routine. They are aromatically pleasing and versatile. They can be used in room scenting and diffusion, an aromatic bath, inhaled from a nasal inhaler or a drop on your pillow, incorporated into a restful massage, added to a body lotion or carrier oil for a chest/body rub.
Creating a soothing ritual incorporating aromatic blends and relaxation techniques, helps you release stress and tension and promotes quality sleep.
Dedicated Aromatic Sleep Easy Routine
Embrace some luxury and enjoy a foot bath to relieve tired, swollen aching feet and legs and give you a lift.
Just add an essential oil blend to a tepid foot bath to relieve tired feet, reduce swelling in ankles and legs and/ or relieve aching muscles. This will bring a sense of relaxation and restoration.
To relieve tired aching feet blend 1 drop of lavender, 1 drop of peppermint and 1 drop of cypress, in 6 mls of raw organic coconut oil and ½ cup of magnesium bath flakes; add to tepid foot bath. Soak feet for ten minutes, as you take slow deep breaths and massage feet and legs in an upward motion to bring calm, balance and restoration.
Essential oil safety tip
Never put undiluted essential oils directly onto skin, they are concentrated plant extracts and can cause sensitivity. Dilute drops of essential oils in cold pressed vegetable oil and then add to the water and swish well before lowering your feet into the foot bath. Citrus oils such a bergamot can be photo-sensitising meaning treated skin has a greater risk of burning if exposed to sunlight or tanning beds. If you are pregnant its best to enjoy the benefits of essential oils via diffusion unless you are under the care of a qualified clinical Aromatherapist.
An effective pain or stress relieving remedy is to take a full warm bath with essential oils and magnesium flakes for 20 minutes. A lovely essential oil blend for peaceful sleep is sweet orange, lavender, petitgrain, roman chamomile and sandalwood.
Essential oil safety tip
Always dilute essential oils in a carrier oil and magnesium flakes because they can be sensitising to the skin. Use up to 6 drops of essential oil in 12 mls of carrier oil. Fill the bath up first then add your essential blend and swish well. Be careful when getting out of the bath your feet could be slippery. Massage the blend into your tired, strung out body and you will feel relief.
If you don’t have time for a bath, diffuse a sleep easy blend or use as a room and linen spray. To diffuse place up to six drops in a diffuser and for 20 minutes prior to sleep.
For a room spray, add 20 drops of sweet orange, 5 drops of lavender, 5 drops of petitgrain, 5 drops of sandalwood and 5 drops of roman chamomile to 100 ml of distilled water and disperser in a PET spray bottle. Shake bottle well before lightly misting bed linen, curtains and room prior to going to sleep.
Take slow deep breaths and combine the aroma of the essential oils with mindfulness and relaxation practices such as journaling, meditation, gentle yoga or stretching, and/or play soothing music.
Consciously choose to start a dedicated wind down routine in the evenings.
Disrupting entrenched patterns of behaviour can be challenging. Don’t be discouraged if it takes time to achieve the desired changes.
If you would like some help, book in for an Aromatherapy consultation where we can organise a plan and get started with a restorative aromatherapy massage.
Give me a call on 0414 754 543 or save time and BOOK ONLINE.
Yours in Living Well,