Content of the material
- Say Hello to Your Life Saver- Dodow
- 15. Dim the Lights With a Glow Light
- Exploring the sleep zone
- Forcing the mind and body to regulate the breath
- That Tingling Sensation: Paresthesia
- Treatment for Hand Arm Numbness
- Visualization Exercises
- Body Scan
- Autogenic Training
- Key Points
- When to See a Doctor
- I tried it and cured my insomnia
- How to Fall Asleep with ADHD: Steps and Solutions
- Assess Current Sleep Habits
- Medication and Supplements to Aid Sleep
- Sleep Hygiene and Best Practices for ADHD Brains
- Set Yourself Up For Success
Say Hello to Your Life Saver- Dodow
To meet the needs of people who struggle to fall asleep easily, a product called Dodow was recently designed and manufactured.Advertising
The product manufacturers claim that on average, users of Dodow fall asleep 2.5 times faster than without using it. And in most cases, users manage to go to sleep within just 8 minutes.
Sounds great – but what exactly is Dodow and how does it work?
Put down the maple-bacon glazed doughnuts. Bacon is also horrible for you (for a few reasons, but let’s focus on inflammation). Saturated fat, when heavily processed, contributes to inflammation. This goes for hot dogs and bologna, too.
Along with increased inflammation, a study conducted by Columbia University found direct correlation between eating processed and cured meat such as bacon and developing chronic pulmonary disease. 
15. Dim the Lights With a Glow Light
Light is an important signal that tells your body what “mode” to be in. While bright lights like blue light are great for keeping you alert, ambient yellow-toned light can help signal to your body that it’s time to turn in.
Using a dimming light, like a glow light, can help your body gradually relax into a sleep-ready state. For the best results, start dimming your lights slowly after dinner, until you’re ready for bed in your dark, cozy haven.
Shop Casper Glow Light
Exploring the sleep zone
So how do you tell the difference between:
- dozing off because you’re genuinely tired
- dozing off because your mind just isn’t used to slowing down
- dozing off because you’re subconsciously avoiding difficult thought or emotions, or
- consciously entering a state of deep sleep-like relaxation or concentration?
I’m not sure that there’s an easy way to tell, though with experience it should become clearer.
One thing to be aware of is that the way you meditate may influence how wakeful you remain. Some techniques require a more active or focused approach. Other’s encourage you to adopt a passive or receptive stance. I find that techniques that require you to continually return your attention to some anchor, such as the breath, don’t allow you to access dream-like states quite so readily. But people still fall asleep practising in this style, so there aren’t really any hard and fast rules on what will keep you wakeful, or send you into the world of dreams.
If you’re interested in exploring the sleepy end of the spectrum I would suggest that you let your thoughts and emotions be a part of your practice and don’t be concerned if your attention wanders a lot.
Forcing the mind and body to regulate the breath
This is really the key point explaining why the 4-7-8 breathing technique is so powerful.
Holding the breath brings our bodies into a deep state of relaxation. It gives the body time to replenish its oxygen, giving your organs and tissues a much-needed oxygen boost.
Relaxation techniques like this one help bring the body back into balance, regulating our fight-or-flight response system.
It’s a way to combat the usually stressful experiencing of lying awake at night, fighting to get back to sleep.
The 4-7-8 technique forces the mind and body to focus on regulating the breath, rather than worrying about not sleeping. Weil describes it as a “natural tranquilizer for the nervous system.”
According to Healthline, the overall concept of 4-7-8 breathing can be compared to practices such as:
- Alternate nostril breathing involves breathing in and out of one nostril at a time while holding the other nostril closed.
- Mindfulness meditation encourages focused breathing while guiding your attention to the present moment.
- Visualization focuses your mind on the path and pattern of your natural breathing.
- Guided imagery encourages you to focus on a happy memory or story that will take your mind off your worries as you breathe.
It’s a simple technique, but you can see that it incorporates a number of very powerful elements. Often the best ideas are the simplest ones.
That Tingling Sensation: Paresthesia
The sensation of pins and needles or “tingling” in your limb is technically known as paresthesia. Paresthesia refers to a burning or prickling sensation that usually occurs in the hands, arms, legs, or feet. The feeling is usually painless, but it can be noticeable enough to wake you from your sleep. Temporary paresthesia is also fairly common. A recent study showed that 33% of people experienced paresthesia at least once a week. You may have experienced periods of paresthesia if you’ve sat uncomfortably with sustained pressure for too long, crossed your legs for too long, or (most commonly) when you’ve fallen asleep with a crooked arm or hand over your head. In these cases, paresthesia is thought to be caused by poor positioning that compresses and squishes the nerves – blocking nerve signals from readily flowing between the limb and the brain.
Long-term nerve compression can actually damage nerves, so waking up to reposition the limb is yet another fascinating example of the body protecting itself. In general, that’s all it takes: reposition and relieve the pressure from the affected limb, “shake it out”, and refrain from falling asleep in that same position. However, there are other potential ways for you to prevent paresthesia and, importantly, determine whether the symptoms should be assessed by a doctor.
Treatment for Hand Arm Numbness
In more severe cases or those that are associated with an underlying health condition, your doctor may recommend treatments such as:
There are a variety of medications that can help relieve numbness and stop your arm from falling asleep at night. Depending on your specific condition, you may be prescribed an anti-inflammatory medication to reduce pressure on the nerve. To relieve nerve pain, anti-seizure medication or possibly even antidepressants may be recommended.
Undergoing surgery may be necessary to relieve pain and other symptoms of nerve damage. Surgeries can correct the underlying problem for those with more severe forms of the condition. Typically, surgery is not done until all other treatment options have been exhausted.
Another way to engage the body’s natural relaxation response is to use visualization exercises. These techniques rely on using mental images to create a sense of well-being in the body, which can reduce stress and help you fall asleep.
Body scans are a type of meditation that feature a slow, focused attention to different parts of the body. Once you’re lying comfortably in bed, try these steps for a relaxing body scan:
- Start by taking a few deep breaths, perhaps trying diaphragmatic or 4-7-8 breathing, to get your body into a relaxed state.
- Bring your attention to your feet, noticing any sensations in your toes and if you’re holding any tension in this part of the body.
- If you notice discomfort here, acknowledge it and try to let go of any thoughts of stories you have. Visualize the tension leaving the body through the breath.
- When you’re ready, move your focus to your calf muscles, repeating the process of noticing sensations, letting go of thoughts or stories, and visualizing the tension leaving through your breath.
- Methodically move your attention to each part of your body, one-by one, moving from your feet to your forehead until you’ve scanned your entire body.
Autogenic Training takes you through the same steps as the body scan, but adds in self-statements about heaviness and warmth in each part of the body. The idea is that, with practice, you can begin to calm different parts of your body at any time. Here’s how it goes:
- Start with a few minutes of breathing exercises to get into a relaxed state.
- Next, bring your attention to your feet, then slowly repeat to yourself six times, “my feet are very heavy, I am completely calm.”
- Focus again on your feet, then slowly repeat 6 more times, “my feet are very warm, I am completely calm.”
- Repeat this process as you move your attention to each part of your body, from your feet to your head, repeating each phrase about heaviness and warmth.
If you find it too distracting to remember each phrase or count how many times you’ve said them, you can record yourself going through the process and play it back at bedtime. You can also find audio and video records online, if you’d prefer to have someone else walk you through autogenic training.
- It’s okay to fall asleep during meditation.
- If you’re genuinely tired sleep is probably just what you need.
- It’s common to mistake deep meditative states for sleep.
- Some of the most beneficial meditative states are accessed on the cusp of sleep.
- Meditating in bed, or while lying down, will tend to induce sleep.
- It really is okay to fall asleep during meditation.
When to See a Doctor
In many cases, your arms falling asleep at night isn’t necessarily cause for alarm. However, if it happens often, while you’re awake, or is significantly impacting your sleep quality, it may be worthwhile to visit the doctor. There are also other symptoms, that when combined with pain and numbness in your arms and hands while sleeping, may be a sign of a bigger issue. If you experience the same feelings in your face, have trouble speaking, or notice sudden weakness or lack of coordination, you should speak with your doctor.
Your doctor can perform a physical evaluation to determine whether there is an underlying health issue contributing to your arms falling asleep at night. Depending on their evaluation, they may refer you to a neurologist to further examine for nerve compression.
I tried it and cured my insomnia
This was enough of a testimonial for yours truly to try it out as I suffer from insomnia on a regular basis. Last night I gave it a short for the first time.
I fell asleep immediately. When I woke up in the middle of the night as I usually do, I did the technique again and fell back asleep.
Not as instantly as at the beginning of the night, but quickly.
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How to Fall Asleep with ADHD: Steps and Solutions
Assess Current Sleep Habits
Begin by faithfully keeping a sleep diary that tracks:
- Actual hours slept each night, including times (and not just time spent in bed trying to sleep). The National Sleep Foundation recommends 7 to 9 hours of sleep for adults, 8 to 10 hours for teens, and 9 to 11 hours for 6 to 13 year olds. The more sleep that is done when the sun is down, the better.
- Weekday and weekend sleeping hours. There shouldn’t be too much variation between the two.
- Sleep locations (bed, couch, etc.)
- Environment (T.V. on or off? music playing?)
- Naps during the day
- If and how sleep habits affect others in the household
Consider signing up for a sleep study, a test that studies brain waves, oxygen levels in the blood, breathing, and more to see if any sleep disorders are present. If diagnosed with sleep apnea, a CPAP machine helps with breathing.
Anatomical issues, like a deviated septum, can also lend themselves to obstructed breathing and other sleeping problems. A septoplasty and other procedures can correct the issue.
Medication and Supplements to Aid Sleep
- Stimulants: Studies show that the use of stimulants for treating ADHD can help with sleep by targeting ADHD symptoms that often trigger sleep problems. Depending on the individual, the time the dose is taken can sometimes impact sleep (if taken too late, for example).
- Melatonin: This hormone is naturally produced in the brain and helps signal to the brain that it’s sleep time. Talk to your doctor about melatonin and whether taking a supplement may be appropriate and helpful.
Sleep Hygiene and Best Practices for ADHD Brains
- To nap, or not to nap? For some, power naps throughout the day are a must for feeling energized and refreshed. For others, it may mess with sleep later in the evening. Experiment with naps, and note it in the sleep diary.
- 20-minute rule: If you’re trying to change your sleep time, do it in 20-minute intervals to avoid jarring the brain. For example, if 2 a.m. is your current bedtime and your goal is to be asleep by 11 p.m., aim to sleep at 1:40 a.m. the first night, 1:20 a.m. the next, etc.
- Relaxation exercises/deep breathing can calm and prep the body and mind for sleep.
- Unplug from technology. Have an end time to put away your phone, turn off TV shows, or stop playing video games. The light from devices can throw off your sleep cycle.
- External cues: A warm bath, light music (or a sound machine), dim lights, and changing into pajamas can help shift the mind and body closer to sleep mode. Make sure to have daytime cues as well (bright lights, a cool shower, food, etc.)
- Climate control: Having a cool room offset by a warm, cozy bed grounds the body and makes you more inclined to stay in bed.
- Dark room. Use eye masks, close curtains, and make sure to dim lights from clocks and other electronic devices.
- Don’t stay awake in bed too long. If it takes longer than a half hour to fall asleep, it’s better to get out of bed but engage in a non-stimulating activity or (and this sounds strange) just stand up by the bed until sleepiness sets in.
- No snoozing. You’re cheating yourself out of deep, restorative sleep by hitting the snooze button. Keep the alarm out of arm’s length so you have to get out of bed to shut it off.
Set Yourself Up For Success
A good night’s sleep does wonders for you, both mentally and physically. But if you’re having trouble falling asleep, the anxiety that triggers can actually make it even harder to catch some zzz’s.
Whether you do progressive muscle relaxation or start dimming the lights after dinner, set yourself up for a great night’s sleep with a soft and supportive mattress for the sleep of your dreams.
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