News

10-08-2016

Reading, seeing or hearing about traumatic events, even when you are not personally involved, can still result in an emotional response . For various reasons, such as associating with the victims or seeing children the same age as your own being affected,  it may generate a sense of powerlessness , vulnerability and anxiety in a person. Not sleeping is a natural response to watching or  hearing of traumatic events.  The stress hormones turn the sleep promoting systems off, even though your body is tired. Long term sleep deprivation can lead to more serious mental health conditions and problems.

  • Turn off the news at night, leave a news-free buffer before going to sleep, or limit your exposure to media coverage of violence. Reassure yourself that you are safe.
  • Give yourself permission to have a few nights poor sleep, the more anxious you become about not sleeping fuels the cycle. You don't have to return to normal immediately.
  • Find relaxation and meditation techniques to help ease stress , listen to music
  • Stick to a schedule of the same time going to bed and waking up, even on the weekends
  • Make a ritual before going to bed, a relaxing routine away from screens and  bright lights that reduces stresses and anxieties
  • Exercise daily, but not too close to bedtime
  • Be aware of how much tea and coffee you are drinking
  • Improve your bedroom to reduce noise ( consider earplugs), ideally keep a cool temperature, reduce light,
  • Sleep on a comfortable mattress ( said to have a lifespan of 9-10 years)  and pillow (comfortable and allergen free)
  • Expose yourself to sunlight in the morning to try and regulate circadian rhythms
  • Wind down in the last hour before bed with calming activities such as reading, avoid electronics just prior to bedtime
  • Talk about what is bothering you, expressing your emotions is helpful is dealing with tragedies, allow yourself to cry, talk about your feelings, if talking to your family is not enough, talk to a psychologist, particularly if you are feeling overwhelmed by sadness or helplessness, if the problem doesn't reduce over time or you find it difficult to maintain everyday routines
  • Speak to your doctor if you continue to have trouble sleeping, you may benefit from keeping a sleep diary to help evaluate patterns and issues connected to your sleep habits

 

 

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