It’s hard to imagine anything more blissful than 8 hours of a deep undisturbed sleep. Apart from the rest and restoration many functions that are important to good health are carried out while we sleep. For varying reasons most of us don’t get enough restful sleep; this results in chronic stress and tiredness that compromise us both physically and mentally.
Homoeopathic remedies may be a great help during episodes of sleep disturbance and we have listed a few scenarios and common remedies. If problems recur and are serious or very distressing, consult a professional homoeopath or health professional.
The following information may be helpful and relates to homoeopathic remedy pictures and information available in traditional homoeopathic texts. Homoeopathic principles should be applied when using any homoeopathic remedy. Always read the product label. If symptoms persist consult your health care practitioner promptly.
CHILDREN & BABIES’ SLEEP PROBLEMS
Nightmares: Aconite – acute fear caused by nightmares. Arsenicum – wakes 12-3 am restless and fearful from anxious dreams and nightmares. Calc carb – nightmares and dreams of monsters in stubborn, sweaty children who are growing quickly. Silica – anxious dreams and sleepwalking in slight children with low stamina. Sulphur – disturbed and un-refreshing sleep with vivid nightmares. Hot and sleeps in catnaps; wakes at the slightest noise.
Teething: Belladonna – restless sleep with twitching during teething and fevers; the child has a hot head and can sleep with eyes partially open. Calc phos – painful teething in restless, anxious, irritable babies who scream in their sleep and need lots of attention. Difficulty falling asleep. They whinge, whine and dislike routine. Chamomilla – irritable, restless babies who can’t be calmed, wanting to be picked up, put down and picked up again. Moaning while asleep.
Growing pains: Calc phos is the most common remedy for children who are growing quickly and tend to suffer tummy aches, headaches, leg pains and cramps. They have trouble getting to sleep and then find it hard to wake up in the morning.
FOR PARENTS & CARERS
As all parents and carers know sleep deprivation is extremely debilitating and taxing. Cocculus – dizzy, exhausted, hollow feeling. Sepia – irritable, fed up and dragged down, wants to run away. Nux vomica – irritable and relying on coffee and stimulants to get through.
STRESS, GRIEF & WORRIES
Aconite – acute insomnia with anxiety, fear and restlessness; often this comes on after a shock, fright, bad news or grief. Arsenicum – anxious, fussy people who fret about every little thing stopping them from falling asleep. Restless despite their deep weariness and exhaustion. Dreams can be full of fear and insecurity. Cocculus – exhausted and dizzy from sleep disturbance. Worse from loss of sleep for instance when caring for the sick, a restless baby or adjusting to shift work, jet lag etc. Gelsemium – for the insomnia of businessmen and women, who spend restless nights, awaken early in the morning and worry over their business affairs. Ignatia – sleeplessness after a shock, emotional stress, or grief. Yawning, sighing and overwrought in the daytime yet unable to sleep at night. Nat mur – sleep disturbed by a recurring tendency to stew on disagreeable thoughts.
OVER-WORKED & OVER STIMULATED
Arnica – good for the effects of physical overwork resulting in a ‘bruised and beaten’ feeling. Kali phos – this nerve tonic remedy is great when exhausted by stress, study or overwork. It supports the nervous system and can be used in conjunction with other indicated remedies. Nux vomica – the remedy for over study, overwork, too many late nights or for a disturbed routine. Sleepless after waking up very early in the morning, goes back to sleep just before the alarm goes off, and is then irritable from lack of sleep. Rhus tox – restless and stiff after over-exertion, must get up out of bed and walk about.
When menopausal hot flushes disturb sleep consider Sepia, Pulsatilla or Sulphur. Check our Homoeopathy for the Home Prescriber book page 47, and our Women’s Health Infosheet or Menopause Factsheet to help you choose the remedy that best fits your symptoms.