Can meditation really help you sleep better?
There’s no smoke without fire, and sleep deprivation continues to motivate people to try meditation. Meditation’s ability to help sleep is a benefit that deserves the buzz it has sparked.
In 2016 a UK Sleep Survey revealed that over 61% of people living in the UK are dissatisfied with their quality of sleep. 64% have also occasionally expressed not waking up with as much energy as they would like. Having sleepless nights are common culprits of a short temper, poor levels of concentration and a fragile immune system. If you’ve started the day desperate for another hour of sleep, meditation is a good place to start.
How does meditation lead to a better night’s sleep?
Meditation guides you through ways to gain control over your behaviour in the present moment by focusing on your physical, psychological and emotional sensations while you experience them. With a stronger awareness, it becomes possible to make conscious decisions to help yourself have a restful sleep.
1. Meditation reduces stress
Arguably one of the most common root causes of lack of sleep is underlying stress. Meditation has been proven to reduce stress by bringing our minds to the present moment, so that we worry less about the future and ruminate less about the past. In the moment, we realise that there is no need to activate our “flight or fight” response over casual matters such as spilling coffee. With practice, meditation reduces our exaggerated stress response in daily life, as we gain more perspective and become calmer.
2. Meditation boosts melatonin
Melatonin is a hormone in the body that encourages sleep. Vincent Giampapa, MD, discovered that melatonin levels for regular meditation practitioners were boosted by an average of 98%.
3. Meditation triggers relaxing brain waves
When we are awake, our brain is lead by beta waves that keeps us present and engaged; however when it comes to going to sleep our brains need more Alpha, Theta & Delta waves as these encourage deeper relaxation and deep sleep. Meditation keeps beta brain waves at bay. By meditating before sleep, our brains cancel out any Beta waves that may be carrying anxiety or stress into the night and prepare the brain to sleep.
To start reclaiming your healthy sleeping habits through meditation have a look at Inhere’s sleep programme.