Author Archives: Michelle Winters

Improving Your Wellbeing In Order To Start Sleeping Better

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We all know that sleeping well is integral to staying healthy, but it can be hard to even get a good night’s sleep if you’re unhealthy. That’s the irony of it all. You might find yourself locked in a negative health cycle. But you can make changes to help improve your sleeping pattern and start to lead a healthier life in general. The following suggestions should help you to start improving your wellbeing in order to start sleeping better.

Get into an exercise routine.

One of the best ways to improve your wellbeing and start sleeping better is to get into an exercise routine. Working out is beneficial for both your physical and your mental wellbeing. It keeps you fit but it also releases endorphins to keep your brain happy. In terms of your ability to sleep well, it helps in that it reduces stress (making it easier for your brain to unwind at night) and also tires you out (obviously, that helps when it comes to sleeping).

Take care of your mental health.

There’s no denying that the ability to sleep well comes down to your mental state. After all, falling asleep is all about allowing your body and mind to unwind at the end of the day. It’s about letting your thoughts drift away as you enter ‘the land of nod’. That’s why you need to take care of your mental health if you want to start sleeping better. Psychological wellbeing is just as important as physical wellbeing when it comes to your lifestyle. Rather than stimulating your mind before bed, read a good book or talk to your loved one so that you can allow yourself to relax before you try to fall asleep. Avoiding bright screens will be much more beneficial to you if you feel that your brain is overactive before bed.

You might find that therapy is beneficial if you’re struggling to sleep properly because you have lots of worries or a very hectic life. It’s essential to start addressing your mental health problems rather than allowing them to keep you awake when you close your eyes in bed. This will help you to start enjoying a happier life and a healthier sleeping pattern. You could even look into therapeutic solutions such as a Panchakarma treatment program to help heal your mind and body. By using herbal oils and massages, you’ll be able to achieve a state of equilibrium that might help you to sleep better.

Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.

Many people make up for sleep deprivation throughout the week by lying in at the weekend. However, this is not a solution when it comes to your long-term health. It’s much better for your body and your mind if you maintain a consistent bedtime pattern throughout the week. It’s about getting into a natural rhythm so that your body and mind can function properly. More importantly, it’s about ensuring that you can actually fall asleep easily on any night of the week. This will improve your physical and mental wellbeing. In turn, you’ll find that you’ll sleep better and find it easier to fall asleep in the first place. It’s a win-win situation.

“Can you come sleep coach my child for me?”

I hear this occasionally, parents asking me if I can come sleep train their child for them.  Some are joking when they ask, some are serious.  I wanted to talk a little about why I do not offer this service.

Children act differently for strangers and other people who aren’t Mom and Dad

If you’ve ever seen your child in school or daycare you may be amazed at how they are acting.  They are behaving and listening so well!  Some of that could just be consistency, they know exactly what to expect and when to expect it at school, whereas home can be a little more chaotic at times.  Also parents may be a little inconsistent at times – I know when I’m trying to do things around the house and my child is bugging me for something, I may be a little more willing to give in then their teachers may be!  So if I, or someone else, would come into their home and try to put them to sleep, they may very quickly and quietly start falling asleep, but then when Mom or Dad try to do the same thing, they may behave very differently.  Plus if Mom is nursing, baby will smell mom when she’s there, but not when the stranger is there.  (Speaking of this, I do sometimes recommend Dad do the coaching in the beginning until baby is used to not eating, but I always have Mom step in at some point as well).

Outsourcing?

I’m not crazy about the idea of parents “outsourcing” when they feel like the task is going to be hard for them.  (Of course if you have hired someone to come in, I’m not judging you – everyone needs to do what feels right to them).  I want parents to feel confident in their parenting ability.  No matter how competent or incompetent you feel, you can do this.  Your child will feel most comfortable with you, and yes that may mean they’ll fight longer or act out more, but I always want bedtime to be a calm, relaxing experience, and I cannot imagine it will be that calm or relaxed with a stranger in the room, no matter how comforting they are.

You can do it! 

You don’t need someone else to come in and coach your child.  You know your child best and you can read them better than anyone.  Plus you will gain more confidence in going through this process!

Yes, I can help!

This is not to say I cannot help you at all.  My services help you create a plan to follow to help your child get the sleep they need to be happy and healthy.  Sometimes I also add in text support where I can be available while you are doing bedtime, so you can ask questions and get immediate answers, or just general support.  I also have been available in a family’s house, I’ve stayed downstairs while the family is doing the sleep coaching upstairs.  I can watch on baby monitors and just be there for support.

 

Do you have questions or comments?  I would love to hear them!

How to Improve Your Sleep With CFS/ME

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CFS/ME, or to give the condition it’s full title Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/ Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, is one of the most frustrating conditions that affect sleep. Despite being tired all the time, CFS sufferers often find that they are unable to get to sleep and, even if they do, they wake up unrefreshed.

The causes of CFS/ME are still unknown and though the condition is hardly uncommon, scientists are still at a loss as to how to treat it. However, there are a few things you can try to help improve the quality of your sleep.

In fact, even if you don’t have CFS/ME, you might like to try these tips!

Combating Chronic Pain

Many people with ME suffer with chronic pain and/or fibromyalgia. This is a type of pain that can affect the joints and muscles as well as the glands and is often described as ‘flu-like symptoms’. Obviously, this is going to affect your sleep.

Getting the best possible mattress and pillow combination should be your first port of call. Make sure that you are comfortable, with your back in alignment. You should always try a few mattresses out before you select one and give yourself a full afternoon to make a good choice.

One option is to try CBD oil which can relax the muscles and reduce symptoms. Green garden gold’s website has some interesting articles on this topic that are worth reading before you try.

Give Weighted Blankets a Go

Weighted blankets were first developed to help anxious dogs calm down and sleep by imitating the sensation of being hugged. It’s hardly surprising that the demand for weighted blankets for the human population soon followed! Though you can imitate the idea of a weighted blanket by piling a few on top of each other, the likelihood is that you’ll just end up feeling hot.

The weight of the blanket is soothing for people who suffer with insomnia as well as stress and anxiety. For people with CFS, the blanket seems to help calm the body down and reduce restlessness which in turn improves sleep quality. The blanket is non-medicinal so anyone can try it.

Use Heat and Ice Smartly

Heat and ice therapies are well-known for reducing and mitigating pain. Ice is ideal for sore throbbing pain but heat is perfect for joint pain and general aches. As many people with CFS also find controlling their temperature a challenge sometimes, these therapies can also help to make you more comfortable at night.

At the most basic end, a hot water bottle is cheap and cheerful as well as effective. You can fill it with warm water or you can fill it with cold and pop it in the freezer on a hot night. Stepping up a little, you might also like to consider an electric heat pad. You can actually find these shaped like jackets online which provide wings to go around your shoulders too!

Though there is no current cure for CFS, making yourself as comfortable as possible will help alleviate some of your symptoms. And even if you don’t have CFS, these tips could work nicely for you too!

Saying Thank You

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If you’ve faced any problems in your life and found a solution that has helped you out of your tough time, very often you want to give something back.

As a young parent with a non-sleeping baby maybe you got some great advice or maybe you were in need of some help getting a job and a charity stepped in to help you back into employment. Whatever the case, sometimes it’s great to pay forward all the kind favors that have been done for you. We bring you some random acts of kindness that can make the world a better place for everyone.

Give…generously

If you feel passionately about a cause, maybe it’s time to put your money where your mouth is and make a donation. It might be that you’re not in a position to donate great sums of money so why not start today by setting up a Direct Debit to a charity of your choice for just a few dollars a month. These small but regular acts of generosity soon mount up and create a regular income stream for charities when they need it most.

Pay it forward…in coffee

Has anyone ever done you a real favor and expected nothing back in return? Do you think you could do the same? Next time you’re buying a coffee in a café, why not pay that favor forward and buy a coffee for the student in the queue or the older person behind you? These kinds of favors transform society. They change how people think about others. They put a smile on someone’s face and they might just be inspired to pay it forward again to someone else.

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Make a Will

No one wants to think about it but by leaving a donation to a charity in your Will you will be leaving more than money, you’ll be leaving a legacy of kindness and generosity.

Get involved

Perhaps you just want to help. Why not make a conscious decision to sign up to a charity that’s looking for help? As well as giving back to your community, like Elan Shukartsi, you’ll get to meet some like-minded people and see first-hand the difference volunteering just a few hours of your week can make.

You probably do have a charity or a cause that you feel passionate about and at one time in your life, you probably have had someone show kindness for no real reason other than kindness itself. It’s time for all of us to give something back so let’s pay it forward with some random acts of kindness or spend some time helping out at an animal shelter or charity clothes shop.

You won’t regret starting or that deep sense of satisfaction you’ll get from turning your down time into time spent helping other people. If you have a little extra cash, as well as time, find a charity that’s become close to your heart and set up that payment scheme today. Give back something and receive a whole lot more all over again.

What Are The Health Benefits Of Infrared Saunas?

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There are so many different reasons why you should consider purchasing an infrared sauna instead of going down the traditional route. This includes the ease of installation, as well as cost benefits too. Nevertheless, there is no denying that one of the main benefits is the many health advantages associated with infrared saunas.

Weight loss help

There are so many health benefits that have been proven when it comes to infrared saunas. Firstly, a lot of people use these saunas when they are trying to shed some pounds. Not only do saunas help to purify fat cells, but you could burn up to 600 calories in just one session! You can also expect to sweat out more toxins if you use an infrared sauna instead of using a traditional sauna. All of the following will be detoxified: heavy metals, hydrocarbon residues, alcohol, nicotine, sodium, and cholesterol.

Improve your skin

Do you have any sort of skin condition? From acne to psoriasis and eczema, saunas can help improve your skin tone and complexion. The same applies if you have any burns or scars, as well as cellulite. You can read about the psoriasis symptoms inspire has written about for a better understanding on how a sauna could help.

Feel less stressed

You can also lower stress levels and fatigue with a sauna. This is because saunas stimulate ‘feel good’ hormones and endorphins of the brain. This will increase your mood.

Stronger cardiovascular system

In addition to this, your cardiovascular system will become stronger thanks to the deep far infrared penetration. Bacteria and parasites, and other organisms, can be killed during a sauna session, which improves your  immune system.

Great for treating aches and pains

Finally, saunas are recommended for arthritis sufferers because they are great for treating aches and pains too.

How infrared saunas can help you to get a better sleep

Do you get the six to eight hours sleep you are meant to? A lot of people don’t! Infrared saunas can also help with this, which is important when you consider the negative impacts of a lack of sleep.

Not only will an infrared sauna help you to drift off, but they are proven to provide a sleep that is deeper and more relaxed. The slow and relaxing endorphins decline that happens between enjoying time in a sauna and going to bed can be monumental in the facilitation of sleep. This not only means you will find it easier to drift off but you will better in the morning too.

So there you have it: it is not hard to see why infrared saunas come so highly recommended.