Improve Your Sleep Through The Use Of Biofeedback
Sleep. Sounds like such a natural thing for the body to accomplish, yet more than 30% of the population suffers from insomnia. For the vast majority of people, the inability to fall asleep stems from stress and anxiety. We lay awake thinking about the events of the day, our chores for tomorrow, relationships, finances, or a host of other stressful situations going on in our lives. The secret to solving the issue is to take your mind off the problems of the day and stop your mind from going 100 miles per hour. Thus the concept of counting sleep.
Better than counting sheep to relax your mind and stop it from spinning is the use of biofeedback. Biofeedback generally relies on machines that measure heart rate, muscle tension, or even brain waves. As you calm your mind with pleasant thoughts or breathing techniques and your body transitions from a stressed state to a relaxed state, your body undergoes physiological changes which are measured and identified by the biofeedback machine. As you relax, the machine picks up the changes in your body and generates a pattern of lights and tones to let you know that you are headed towards a state of biofeedback therapy relaxation. The feedback from the machine reinforces the fact that you are ridding your mind of stress, and it helps you identify internal changes within in you. In other words, you learn to control your body and stress levels with your mind. It is a practical, drug free solution for insomnia and other sleep issues.
My own personal experience with curing my insomnia through the use of biofeedback began 6 months ago. For months my mind would be spinning at bed time with thoughts of all kinds. I would often resort to taking over the counter sleep medication or having a couple of drinks to fall asleep. There were many times when I would still be wide awake at four in the morning. After informing my holistic doctor of my issues, he recommended the use of a small portable biofeedback machine. I was skeptical at first, but after much research, I decided to purchase the device. Each night when I went to bed, I would connect the clip-like sensor from the biofeedback device to my thumb. I would concentrate on my breathing and my heart, and replace the stressful thoughts of the day with thoughts of joy and relaxation. As the device measured the smoothness of my heart beat, its LED lights would change from red to blue to green if it detected a change in my heart rhythms indicative of coherence, or a sense of relaxation. Guided by the lights along with a series of tones emitted by the machine, I was able to tell if I was reaching a state of relaxation or not, and adjust my thoughts accordingly. It took about an hour a night for a couple of weeks to get used to the device and learn how to guide my thoughts to achieve the desired results. Now, after using the biofeedback machine for a half hour each night, I am able to fall asleep within 15 minutes. In addition, I obtain a much deeper