Do you really have a sleep problem?
Essential oils for sleep before bedtime are a lovely treat with or without insomnia but first let’s clarify with ourselves, do we really have a sleep problem? As we age, we need less sleep. Sometimes the so-called sleep problem is just a gap between our expectation to sleep for 8 hours a day and the reality that gives us 5-6 hours only and don’t necessarily have to be treated, we just wake up when we had enough sleep and that’s just how it meant to be, we are not tired anymore. In this case, all you have to do is to enjoy your waking hours, maybe knit? garden? learn something new? You choose! For most adults 7 hours of sleep are definitely enough and yes, that means you wake up at 5am if you went to sleep at 10pm.
Common sleep issues are a difficulty to fall asleep and interrupted sleep, yes, we have essential oils for this but before that, some lifestyle changes that can help. Called also sleep hygiene.
Sleep well tips
Adopt any of the tips that work for you, one at a time. You do not have to do it all at once.
- Use the bed only for sleep and sex! This will train your subconscious to sleep when you get to bed.
- Design your bedroom as a quiet sanctuary that will help you relax into sleep. No computers in the bedroom!
- Do not drink coffee and tea or anything with caffeine from around 4pm. Nicotine is also not recommended and not alcohol, alcohol can make some people sleep but the quality of this sleep is not good and you do not wake up refreshed.
- Do not eat 2-3 hours before sleep, especially not heavy food such as meat, fizzy drinks and heavy food in general, even big salad. If you absolutely have to eat at this time, prefer banana, nuts, oats or hot milk. Hot milk is especially famous for this matter, cow milk specifically but you can try vegan milk, might work just as well.
- Excercise – It’s better to excercise in the morning and for some people vigorous excercise is not a good idea before bedtime but if you have no other time, try to excercise before bedtime, hot shower and you may just sleep like a baby:) If you are into yoga you can do this instead.
- Clean sheets – It’s hard to sleep in a bed full of crumbs or sheets that do not smell good anymore, the bed should be inviting.
- Routine – Go to sleep and wake up at the same time everyday, the recommendation is even in weekends. Just do the best you can according to your lifestyle.
- Turn off Wifi if possible.
- Try not to watch screens 2 hors before sleep.
If nothing else works – Sleep boosters
- Read a book in bed before sleep – This one is a killer for me.
- There’s a new trend ASMR videos, drive me crazy personally but it is a big trend for some reason, if it works for you, who am I to argue with that?
- Essential oils for sleep can be useful.
- you can try a meditation guide like this one, I love it. You do need internet for this though so I don’t use it much because I turn off the wifi at night, but certainly can help.
Essential oils for sleep
If the problem is chronic and you suffer for a long time it’s best to try some combinations or single essential oils and see what is working for you. Then use the same blend every day, it’s important to make your brain connect this scent with sleep as part of your sleep routine.
If it is something temporal, like a time of stress, life changes or you just feel unwell use an oil or a blend according to the situation.
You can also use essential oils just for fun even if you do not have sleep problems. In this case you can play with the scents as you want, see what kind of dreams do you get etc. Going to sleep with your favourite scent can be a real treat at the end of the day.
How to use? Easy! Just a few drops on your pillow.
Choose or combine some of these essential oils for sleep:
Lavender – First choice when we are looking at essential oils for sleep, will work for most people and great even for babies. Even when you make a blend, I would recommend at lease 30% lavender oil unless if you absolutley do not like it. It’s very reaxing and make you sleep longer and without interruptions. If you are used to waking up 4 times a night you’ll be surprised to just wake up in the morning after straight 6- hours of sleep.
Chamomile – Sweet flowery scent, relaxes the muscles and nervous system and calms the mind and quiets the buzz in your brain. Suitable for kids too. Especially good for times of worry and stress and for those of you who do not like lavender this is a great alternative.
Jasmine – very strong so use only 1 drop or blend with other oils. For some people it can be too strong and cause headaches for others it can be very powerful for sleep. Sedative and relaxing for both body and mind.
Bergamot – Masculine citrus scent, improves sleep quality, sedative and balances the hormones. For many people it can bring nice, calming childhood memories since it is the dominant scent of brut, a very popular aftershave back in the days when there were only 3-4 brands of aftershave. Oh yeah!
Cedarwood – Very grounding, especially for sleeplessness due to grief, divorce, breakup, birth or other life changes.
Frankincense – A nice relaxing effect. Relieves stress, focuses the mind and releases feelings of despair. Encourages deep breathing and this helps to calm the mind. Helps to put aside disturbing thoughts, obsessive thoughts, nostalgic thoughts and helps to release the past.
Orange – reduces anxiety by cheering up and relaxation of the nervous system. Relaxes but at the same time promotes a feeling of happiness. Great for those of us who find it hard to fall asleep, kids for example. Brings a feeling of inner peace. I like to mix lavender with orange for kids, both are safe for the.
Lavender is usually the first choice when you think about essential oils for sleep. It’s great for babies in the bath or before bed time massage, will make them sleep a bit longer, recommended for a longer night sleep, do not use during the day. Babies sleep a lot anyway it’s just that they do not tend to sleep at night and give their parents a well deserved rest.
For children it’s a good idea to add orange. Works great and the scent is more appealing for kids.
You can add some other essential oils according to your mood and situation.
Please let me know if you have any question down here in the comments below.