The foundation of human life rests on Three Pillars, namely Ahar (Diet), Nidra (Sleep), and Brahmacharya (Celibacy), any imbalance in these pillars can cause serious harm to our body. In this article we’ll know more about Nidra i.e. sleep. we can depict its importance as – Sleep is the rejuvenation program set for every live body by the creator, it not only nourishes and refreshes our body but also our mind and spirit. Peaceful sleep is the key to Physical and mental wellbeing.
While explaining the importance of Sleep Ayurveda states – an inappropriate sleep or lack of sleep for longer duration can be the cause for ill health, unhealthy weight loss, debility, impotency, infertility, memory loss, irritability, mental confusions and even death.
Sleep times vary with individual’s prakriti (body constitution) , but it is always best to take adequate amount of sleep at night only. In certain exceptional conditions person is allowed to sleep at daytime.
Ideally a person retires to sleep when all his sensory organs, mind and body gets tired; but altered work schedules, stress, illness, physical or emotional discomfort, some medications, depression, shift duties, repeated faulty lifestyles like late night parties, watching television till late hours, etc can lead to Insomnia or sleeplessness.
Deprived sleep patterns can be categorized into :
- Difficulty falling asleep
- Waking up often during the night and having trouble going back to sleep
- Waking up too early in the morning
- Feeling tired upon waking
You can try out these few tips to get adequate and sound sleep at night –
- Morning workout proves beneficial ,Yoga and meditation relaxes mind and body
- Have light dinner , avoid having fried, spicy or excessive sweets at night
- Avoid long naps at daytime
- Try and inculcate the habit of going to bed early
- Have a gentle body massage with seasme oil followed by hot water bath
- Apply coconut oil/Brahmi oil on your head, it pacifies vata and also gives a sense of relaxation
- Apply Shatadhaut Ghrit / coconut oil on palms and soles before retiring to sleep
- A glass of luke warm buffalo milk with some sugar can serve the purpose
- Read a book or chant Mantras at bedtime but avoid watching TV or playing mobile games
- Create cozy,dark, comfortable environment, added with soothing music and fragrance this calms the stress stress and helps you to relax.
- If insomnia is the result of any associated health issues or medications that needs to be treated under medical supervision.
Long term sleep deprivation can be benefited with Panchakarma treatments like –
- Shirodhara with desirable medicated oil or medicated milk or buttermilk this relieves mental stress and also pacifies vata thus helping the mind and body to calm down.
- Shirobasti and Shiroabhyanga
- Abhyanga, Udvartana and Padabhyanga gives the necessary body relaxation and pain relief if any.
- Medicines like Brahmi, Sarpagandha, Ashwagandha,Jatamansi ,Tagar are good brain tonics and act as good sedatives, these medicines can be taken singly or in combination in different forms like powder, decoction, or asav-arishtha
- Saraswatarishta plain or with gold, mixed with water at bedtime not only acts as good sedative but is a very good brain tonic. It helps you get a good sound sleep.
All these therapies and medicines should be strictly taken under the guidance of experienced Ayurvedic Practitioner.
Happy healthy sleeping with Ayurveda. ,