Let me start by saying that as bad as my anxiety was, I did not want to start down the path to prescription drugs. In general, drugs affect me much more than most people for whatever reason. Usually, any negative side effects far outweigh any short term benefits.
I am not a doctor and do not play one on TV. Be sure to talk to your own doctor before taking any anxiety remedy, whether natural or not. Anything I mention here is just for informational purposes, not a specific endorsement or recommendation.
When my anxiety was at it’s worst, I remember being in the middle of a 2-3 week period where I was getting at most 3 hours of sleep a night and it was not all at one time. As a result, my symptoms were at their worst. Some people can function on limited sleep, I am NOT one of those people.
I have a few general ideas for helping with sleep, which come from my own personal experiences:
- Avoid all caffeine – Seems obvious, but with so many folks used to their morning boost, this is still one worth mentioning.
- Avoid alcohol – Alcohol disrupts normal sleeping patterns and just exacerbates the problem.
- Drink lots of water – The more hydrated, the better. However, stop a few hours before bed to avoid frequent trips to the bathroom.
- For snacks, eat apples – Many times when my anxiety flared up, I would lose my appetite, but I still enjoyed apples.
- Avoid laptops, cell phones and anything mentally stimulating up to 2 hours before bed, read instead.
- Listen to relaxation audio while in bed, this is one of my favorites!
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If you’ve tried all of those suggestions and still no luck, one commonly recommended herbal remedy is Chamomile. It is very inexpensive and it is typically used in herbal teas, but that link is to the capsule version. It has several 5 star reviews on Amazon saying that it works wonders for anxiety induced sleep deprivation.
Another possibility is Valerian. Valerian “has a relaxing effect on the nervous system, promoting relaxation in individuals leading a hectic lifestyle. Also helps support restful sleep.”
Glycine has done wonders for my sleep. I was taking a Benedryl pill each night to help try to fall asleep, but read a recent article about how taking Benedryl long term can cause other health problems. Glycine is an amino acid already present in the body and articles and reviews I read recently were very positive with minimal to no side effects and I agree!
Thanks and best wishes for continued success at eliminating your anxiety!