Business Owners, Has Lack Of Sleep Affected Your Bottom Line? Cure Your Insomnia Now

August 1, 2012 0 Comments

By Mary Speller

Insomnia is recognized as taking a long time to fal asleep or being unable to fall asleep after waking up at night. This condition is one of the most common disruptors of job output, with approximately 30 to 40 percent of adults suffering at least one episode of sleeplessness in a year, according to the National Institutes of Health. Lack of sleep can lead to low daytime energy levels, irritability, and anxiety. This can result in making it difficult to concentrate and can adversely affect your efficiency at work. Secondary insomnia can exist as a consequence of other medical problems, while primary insomnia can exist on its own with no obvious cause. Although most people only suffer from acute insomnia that causes short-term sleep problems, between 10 and 15 percent of adults suffer from chronic insomnia, which is difficulty sleeping for at least three nights a week for more than a month.

Causes of insomnia vary and may result from anxiety, diet, or stress from a large workload. Other causes of insomnia include medical issues, like an overactive thyroid, or lack of exercise during the day. Varied shift work or traveling to different time zones can disrupt sleep schedules and cause insomnia. Medications or foods and beverages containing caffeine or alcohol can also cause insomnia.

Caffeine is hidden in so many foods, such as chocolate and coffee-flavored desserts. Alcohol, which can initially cause drowsiness, will disrupt sleep overall and result in a lighter sleep state. Nicotine in both cigarettes and smokeless tobacco acts as a stimulant, and, like caffeine, remains in the body for eight hours or longer. Eating too much or too little before bed can also adversely affect sleep. Foods containing high amounts magnesium, tryptophan, or chlorophyll may induce drowsiness and help with sleep. Foods containing complex carbohydrates have a soothing effect on the brain, while refined carbohydrates, such as those found in white bread and sweets, can stimulate the brain and interfere with sleep.

Stress is one of the most common causes of insomnia. It can also be the easiest to improve. Delegating tasks, eliminating time-wasters such as junk email, and avoiding procrastination can go a long way oward easing stress-induced insomnia. Daily exercise can make it easier to fall asleep later, provided exercise doesn’t take place too close to bedtime. Making time for meditation, prayer, or relaxation exercises during your day can calm the brain, while meditating or doing yoga right before bed can assist the mind and body to sleep. It can be helpful to write down any last minute thoughts and ideas before retiring for the night to prevent dwelling on them while trying to fall asleep.

Many sleep experts consider good sleep hygiene to be one of the most effective remedies for insomnia. It is best to go to bed and wake up at the same time each day, even on weekends. reduce noise, evict pets from the bed, sleep in a darkened room, and avoid bright light, television, and computers right before bed. If these measures don’t work, try the herb valerian or supplemental melatonin, both of which are available over the counter in pharmacies and natural food stores.

In most cases, easing stress, watching diet, and creating relaxing bedtime habits can ease insomnia within days or weeks. If insomnia lasts longer than one month, it could be advisable to see a physician. In severe cases when insomnia appears to be chronic, or when an acute case is too disruptive, a doctor may prescribe medication.

If lack of sleep is having a detrimental effect on your business, and your bottom line, you can learn how to help yourself and your workers to overcome insomnia at

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