One of two scenarios can happen to you once your head hits that pillow at night. You can either feel a sudden rush of energy preventing you from being able to fall asleep, or you look at the clock wide awake and realize it's only 2 am. You thought for sure it was already time to get up, with your body feeling awake and way too alert for it to still be the middle of the night. It's another night of tossing and turning with little hope of getting that peaceful sleep your body and mind need. This is the fourth night this week you've suffered from a lack of quality, uninterrupted sleep.
WHY DOES THIS KEEP HAPPENING?
The answer lies much deeper than the wrong kind of mattress or eating Chinese food before bed. Read on to learn why this could be happening to you.
1) Your adrenal glands are misfiring. Those two little masses that rest on top of your kidneys are two of the most common reasons my patients at The Acupuncture Center of NJ have trouble falling and staying sleeping. What exactly is it that the adrenals are misfiring? The stress hormone cortisol is being released at the WRONG TIME. The only time it should be fired is during the day or when you're in a fight or flight mode, aka when a threat is present. But when a person's adrenals are weak from mental, emotional and physical stress, the adrenal glands fire cortisol at night when you are trying to sleep. Therefore making you feel like you have a second wind, and making restful sleep impossible.
2) Candida. No not the song from the 70's, but the fungus that when in excess, can attack every major system in your body. So how exactly does it effect your sleep? Let me explain. Sleep is governed by the central nervous system and the brain. When both of these are healthy and working in sync with each other, sleep issues are not an issue. However, when a persons body becomes overloaded with the fungus Candida (from a high sugar/alcohol diet, excess stress, or over antibiotic use) the Candida will first begin to attack the liver. Once the liver is compromised it can no longer properly filter toxins out of the bloodstream, causing them to irritate the central nervous system and indirectly the brain. This irritation becomes most evident between 1-3 am when the liver begins its natural "nightly change." During this time you can wake up feeling anxious, with a racing mind, or with a surge of energy, signifying that the liver is overloaded and needs detoxification. So if between 1-3 is when you're most vulnerable to sleep issues, it may be time to rethink your diet and lifestyle to see where possible changes can made to fix this underlying issue.
There are many many causes of insomnia; but in my acupuncture practice these are by far the two main ones that I come across. What can be done to fix these issues? The answer is not as simple as taking a pill. It involves lifestyle changes such as stress management through things like yoga or mediation, dietary changes, supplementation and detoxification.
Here at The Acupuncture Center of NJ we aim to help restore you to a state of peace and tranquility where you can fall asleep with ease and wake up feeling rested. If you're suffering from insomnia, come set up and appointment with us, and we can help get you back on a path of wellness.