Reaching 50+ is indeed a joy and a blessing. However, it may come with some challenges. One of the central issues is insomnia. Just the worry of not sleeping can cause a problem of its own. As you begin the second half of your life, you may need less sleep. You may think you have insomnia, when that may not necessarily the case. An occasional bout of insomnia is common and can be related to stress resulting from excitement or temporary problems. This is not an issue as long as you remain energetic during your waking hours. However, if you experience feelings of being overly tired or overly stressed, try the following tips:
- Establish a routine of going to bed at the same time every night.
- Get some exercise every day so that your body feels tired at night.
- Make sure your bed is comfortable. You do not want to feel too hot or too cold.
- Utilize relaxation techniques such as slow abdominal breathing. Sit in a comfortable position and breathe slowly, concentrating on filling your belly like a balloon. Continue for up to 5 minutes, but stop if you get dizzy.
- Don't work in bed. If the bedroom is used for paying bills or studying, bedtime can become a signal to become active rather than going to sleep.
- Avoid alcohol or caffeine during evening hours.
- Try a warm bath before bed. If you are achy, add Epsom salt to your bath water. Try 5-10 drops of chamomile or lavender essential oil if you are stressed.
- Get a massage. Massage is great for relieving persistent muscle tension resulting from stress and overuse. This can help you to relax and the results last beyond your session. You can still benefit from a massage later that evening, on into the next day.
If none of these tips provide the desired result, you may want to consult your primary care physician to see if you are experiencing depression or anxiety. These can be the the best years of your life. Seek to enjoy them in optimal health and wellness!
Kevin Hatcher is a Licensed Massage Therapist practicing in the Baltimore Metropolitan Area. His training includes The Baltimore School of Massage and The Freedom from Pain Institute. He founded Kevin’s Healing Hands in 2002. His company symbolizes his therapeutic, healing and restorative approach to massage. He utilizes a number of techniques to help his clients achieve their optimal level of health/wellness, including stress reduction, pain control/reduction, muscle tension/soreness relief and myoskeletal therapy. In addition, he also offers worksite chair massage and on-site programs for wedding parties, birthday celebrations and other events.