If you practise meditation, a variety of changes occur in your mind and body. These changes influence certain processes in your body and may also help initiate sleep. If you are having trouble sleeping and going through insomniatic episodes very often, then it’s time you consider meditation therapy.
Sleep problems usually stem from worry and stress, but meditation helps improve your cognitive performance. It improves control over the autonomic nervous system, which impacts your time and duration of staying awake.
How Often Should You Meditate to Cure Insomnia?
Meditation is a skill learnt through practice over time. Those who practise it too often experience many benefits. Studies have shown that meditation produces many psychological and physical effects, so practising it daily is very much recommended to reap its benefits.
Meditation benefits in several ways and can be customized to every person’s physiological needs. It also helps in:
- increasing melatonin (the sleep hormone)
- increasing serotonin (precursor of melatonin)
- decrease in blood pressure
- activate parts of the brain that control sleep
- reducing heart rate
Your body goes through various changes during the sleep cycle. So, meditation promotes sleep by initiating these changes.
When done regularly, meditation can also:
- reduce anxiety
- relieve stress
- increase focus
- improve your mood
- improve cognition
- reduce smoking habit
- improve your pain response
- control hypertension
- improve cardiovascular health
- reduce inflammation
Here are basic steps of meditation to help with insomnia:
· Find a quiet area and lie down in a comfortable position.
· Close your eyes and breathe slowly. Focus on your breathing and inhale, exhale deeply.
· If a thought pops up, refocus on your breathing.
Start by meditating for 3 to 5 minutes before bed daily. Gradually, increase the time to 15 to 20 minutes. You will soon learn to control your mind.
Mindfulness meditation is a type of meditation that involves focusing on the present. It is practised by increasing your consciousness. If you develop a thought or emotion, just observe it, and let it pass. Yoga is also a great way to practise mindful meditation. You can practise yoga with meditation which will prove much beneficial for your physiological needs.
How to do Mindful meditation
- Remove every distraction from your room, even your phone. Lie down in a position you find comfortable.
- Focus on breathing. Inhale and count to 10, then hold your breath for 10 seconds, and then exhale and count to 10. Repeat this process five times.
- Feel every movement and part of your body. If any part feels tense, consciously relax it.
Other Types of Meditation:
- Guided Imagery and Music: This promotes relaxation by asking the person to imagine themselves in a calming place. This is often done with the help of a video recording or audio clip.
- Body Scan Meditation: In this type of meditation, participants focus on different parts of the body and note any feelings of tension or pain. This resembles muscle relaxation, in which participants tense and relax each muscle.