Looking to calm down and catch a few more z's during the frenetic last months of the year? Here's how to manage your stress by falling and staying asleep.
1. Reveille repetitionphoto credit: iStockPhoto. "Going to bed at the same time is good, but it's better to have a set rising time," says J. Kirby Pate, a Nashville sleep specialist
2. Don't panic if you wake up. "We sleep in about 90-minute cycles, and it's not unusual to rise after the second," explains Pate. "After four to five hours, sleep is not particularly restful. You may wake up a few times, but you'll typically go right back to sleep."
3. Keep dreaming. Find yourself half awake at 2:00 a.m.? Woodson Merrell, chairman of integrative medicine at New York's Beth Israel Medical Center, advises, "As you are coming to consciousness, hold on to your dream. Don't let other thoughts come in." Or take a few Boiron Quietude homeopathic tablets ($10.79), which won't make you drowsy later.photo credit: iStockPhoto
4. Take a dip. At least an hour before bed, take a bath with scented salts or calming lavender oil. Try Origins Calm to Your Senses Lavender and Vanilla Milk Bath ($17.50) or Jo Malone Amber & Lavender Bath Oil ($65)
5. Save the meds for jet lag. "It's safe to say that prescriptions [the big three: Lunesta, Ambien, and Sonata] aren't chemically addictive, but you can become psychologically dependent," notes Pate.
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