There are many herbal teas on the market for sleep problems such as insomnia. Insomnia means you are having a hard time going to sleep. It also can mean that you are having a hard time staying asleep. Most people who suffer from insomnia say that they remember turning and tossing all night long or remember being awake at night. Nights when I have insomnia I just can’t seem to turn my mind off and often can’t even close my eyes.
The best way to fall asleep is to have good sleep habits or to use natural sleep aids. There are behavioral or natural treatments for insomnia. One relaxation techniques is practiced by tensing different muscle groups and then relaxing them. Another method calls for repeating a set of visualizations to produce a state of relaxation. My favorite visualization is lying in the sun on a beach in the Bahamas.
It is also good to be able to manage the stress in your life as this can allow you to more easily relax at night or when it’s time to sleep. Another helpful method is to associate the bedroom with sleeping by limiting the time spent in the bedroom for non-sleep activities. So take your television, computer and office out of the bedroom. Also reduce the use of stimulants such as caffeine and avoid large meals just before bed as this can help reduce insomnia. A person can also try soaking in a hot bath to relax or listening to some soft music before going to bed.
There are several herbs that are known to be helpful for people suffering for insomnia. One herb used as a sleep aid is Valerian recognized for years in Europe as being helpful with insomnia. It is sold in the United States only as a dietary supplement. It has shown that it help with insomnia, as well as stress. Because of side effects that have been reported, I strongly recommend that you should talk with a pharmacist because taking Valerian, especially if you are taking any prescription for other medical conditions. A tea from Valerian root has the odor of cat urine so it is best to take this herb in a pill.
Kava is an anti-anxiety herb that may be helpful for anxiety-related insomnia. But this herb has been banned in some countries as it has been shown to cause liver damage.
Several plants have sedative action. Plants commonly prescribed as aids in promoting sleep include passionflower, skullcap, and chamomile.
There is also a tea made with lemonbalm, flavor of mint, chamomile, and some professionals put in catnip.
For insomnia, take one or two cupfuls of an herbal tea in the evening about one half to one hour before bedtime. An additional cup can be taken in the night if you wake up.
Reduce the dosage of herbs taken by 50% for children under five years old and by 25% for children under twelve. But I would strongly recommend talking to a professional herbalist and your family doctor before giving any herbs to children. In fact, I strongly recommend not giving any herbs or drugs to children as this buys into the mindset to take a pill or substance for every problem a person has and in children this can lead to problems later in life with drugs or substance abuse.
This is an overview of available herbs for sleeping.