We usually spend about a third of our lives sleeping so it is hardly surprising that any form of deprivation is disruptive.
Hypnotherapy can help many suffers move on and achieve wonderfully restful nights and wake feeling alert. Learning a little more about sleep is a step in the right direction.
What is a healthy night’s sleep?
A healthy night’s sleep usually comprises of three or four sleep cycles lasting two and a half to three hours. This is why insomnia suffers often wake up after three hours or one sleep cycle.
A sleep cycle contains the following three elements:
When we nod off, we go into Light Sleep and this usually lasts for about twenty minutes. During this time the mind is still reasonably alert. An EEG machine can detect a patient’s reaction to their own name being said.
Slow Wave Sleep
This stage is essential for the body and mind to repair and restore themselves for the next day and it usually lasts for about two hours.
R E M (Rapid Eye Movement) Sleep
This is the lightest level of sleep and in many ways the brain’s activity is similar to the waking state. The movement of the eyes behind the eyelids is obvious during this stage.
There are three causes of insomnia
Whenever I see a new client for insomnia we check their sleep environment. These are just a few of the factors that impact on sleep:
- The amount of light in the room will affect the chemical production in the body.
- We listen for our mobiles phones all day and the mind continues to do this if we take them to bed. It is far better to leave them “out of sight and out of mind”.
- Drinking alcohol within two hours of going to bed might help us to fall asleep, but it can disrupt our normal sleep pattern. Maybe a milky drink is better.
- Images can remain in our mind for up to four hours when we go to bed, so perhaps watching a horror movie is not the best night cap.
- Other factors, such as watching T.V. in bed and eating snacks also affect the quality of our sleep.
Having checked the sleep environment the client will have a good idea about how they can improve their sleeping habits and we can then discuss whether hypnotherapy will be of help to them.
Sometime hypnotherapy can provide help in this area, but I will usually suggest that the client consults with their doctor first. Even a small change in their prescribed drugs could show a major improvement.
A lot of the time insomnia can be trace back to a key time in the past such as surgery, a relationship ending, a burglary or childhood sexual abuse. The client is usually unaware of the triggering event to start with, so we use hypnotherapy to isolate the incident and usually they will then be able to achieve restful nights and wake refreshed every morning.