Ayurveda looks at insomnia or lack of sleep as a Vata (space and air) or a Pitta (fire and water) imbalance.
If one cannot sleep due to a restless mind or many thoughts, anxiety, nervousness etc, then it is a Vata imbalance. But if one wakes up due to excess heat, feeling hot, or sweating at night and then cannot go to sleep then this would be a Pitta imbalance.
- Avoid excess of spicy, bitter foods in the evening as these results in restlessness of the mind and will lead to lack of sleep.
- Avoid stimulating drinks like coffee, green tea etc in the evening.
- Avoid faulty food combinations like fruit and yoghurt or fruit and dairy in the evenings.
- A cup of warm milk with Chyawanprash in the evening.
- Brahmi (Bacopa Monniera) is known for its calming effects on the nervous system therefore really helping towards sleep. Usually taken in the evening before bedtime, it has a calming and a clarifying effect on the brain. One usually wakes up feeling refreshed and full of energy.
- Ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera) is also known for the nervine effects. This herb is good for people who find it difficult to sleep due to stress related conditions as this herbs helps to calm down the brain
- Regular head massages
- Shirodhara, the ayurvedic forehead oil-flow therapy is highly recommended for people who suffer from sleep deprivation. This treatments directly works on the nervous, immune and the endocrine system, helping in to promote healthy production of various hormones that help towards a good sleep.
- Foot massages in the evening with warm oil and then putting the feet in a warm water bowl is one the best recommendations for insomnia.
- Sun salutations and moon salutations help to produce endorphins or relaxing hormones that will help towards sleep.
- Tratak, candle light meditation in the evening will help to get rid of excess heat from the body therefore helping towards a good nights sleep.
- Breathing exercises are the most recommended before bedtime as these help to calm the mind and the nervous system.
- Avoid sleeping during the day as this will affect the quality of sleep at night.
- Keep a window slightly open as fresh air and oxygen helps towards a good nights sleep.
- Avoid watching television just before sleep time.
- Preferable read a book before you go to sleep.
- Avoid having radiation related gadgets, like mobile phones, laptops etc near you while you sleep as their radiation interferes with your sleep waves resulting in disturbed sleep.