Dr. Kevin Sadati Can Now Help Sleep Apnea Patients With The Septoplasty Turbinate Reduction Surgery

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snoringSleep apnea patients suffer from a variety of different symptoms, including difficulty breathing and trouble sleeping through the night. Dr. Kevin Sadati now offers the septoplasty turbinate reduction surgery as a solution to his patients who suffer from this disorder.

Many people associate sleep apnea with loud snoring, but the fact of the matter is Orange County patients with sleep apnea actually stop breathing when they enter deep sleep. This causes many different issues for the person who suffers from this disorder, including disrupted sleep and difficulty getting the fulfilling rest that they need. While the Continuous Positive Airway Pressure therapy, or CPAP, has commonly been used to treat sleep apnea, ENT surgeon Dr. Kevin Sadati has found that the septoplasty procedure can be an even better solution.

The septoplasty surgery is actually designed to correct a deviated septum in the nose. However, this same surgery also reduces the size of the nasal turbinate. Turbinate surgery can actually improve the symptoms associated with sleep apnea and may eliminate the need for CPAP therapy all together.

“Many patients in my Newport Beach practice have benefited from this unique procedure. Obstructive Sleep Apnea is a difficult disorder to live with every day, so I am always pleased to find a solution that allows patients to live a happy life filled with long, restful nights of sleep,” explained Dr. Kevin Sadati.

An enlarged nasal turbinate can often contribute to Obstructive Sleep Apnea, and in addition, a deviated septum can make the situation worse for the patient. The septoplasty surgery will reduce the size of the enlarged nasal turbinate, which allows for improved air flow through the nasal structure. Ultimately, the patient will be able to breathe better throughout the night and can enter deep sleep after the procedure is complete.

Some patients may find that they still require the use of a breathing machine after the surgery, but it’s important to realize that a traditional CPAP machine cannot be used immediately following the operation. The traditional CPAP will put too much pressure on the sensitive nasal structure, which needs to be allowed time to heal. Full face masks or oral breathing machines can be used as a supplement. It should be noted, however, that some patients do not need to use a breathing machine after this operation is complete because the work done during the surgery corrects the issue.

“Ultimately, most patients find that the septoplasty combined with turbinate surgery will allow them to breathe better and sleep longer through the night. I love when my patients come back to me, finally feeling rested after years of long, sleepless nights,” exclaimed Dr. Kevin Sadati.

Dr. Kevin Sadati is not only an ENT surgeon, but also a facial plastic surgeon who specializes in the rhinoplasty procedure. Patients who are interested in their cosmetic improvement options can discuss the possibility of having a septorhinoplasty procedure performed at their consultation appointment.

Dr. Kevin Sadati has been practicing in Newport Beach for the last 10 years and has performed thousands of surgical procedures on patients. He is well-known for his natural-looking cosmetic surgery results, and his breakthrough medical research. For more information on the septoplasty turbinate reduction surgery, contact his office today.

– Courtesy of PRWeb

10 Steps To Getting Your Child To Stay In His Own Bed

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cutekidsFamilies who are transitioning away from co-sleeping or even those who are new to dealing with a child who won’t stay in his own bed after moving to a toddler bed that’s easy to escape are no stranger to the challenge that is mastering the full night’s sleep. There are as many reasons why kids won’t stay in their beds as there are kids themselves, and as many motivations for coming to find a parent after waking abruptly as there are sleepless nights. Finding a method that works for your family may require a bit of trial and error, but with a bit of dedication, you’ll find your child sleeping the night away in his own bed before you know it.

* Find the Root of the Problem – The first step to getting your child to successfully spend the night in his own bed is to find out why he’s having trouble doing so in the first place. Some kids will get out of bed at night because they’re afraid of imaginary monsters, other because they’re simply awakened by something and aren’t able to self-soothe until they fall asleep again. To solve this particular problem, you’re going to need to uncover the root of it and work around what you discover.

* Start a New Routine – Allowing a bit of wiggle room in your child’s bedroom routine can have a major impact on the success or failure of your ability to keep him in his bed at night, especially if he’s getting up because he’s having bad dreams or is afraid. Make room for a “monster check,” take the time to work a bedtime story into the routine, or allow him to wind down a bit by starting the routine earlier and working towards the goal of getting in bed with less pressure.

* Encourage Self-Soothing – If part of your child’s established routine includes you spending time in his bed or in his room until he falls asleep, it may be time to rethink your strategy. After all, a child who’s dependent upon you in order to get to sleep will naturally come searching for you when he wakes up and can’t accomplish the task on his own. Start working on helping your child to fall asleep on his own and you may find that the bulk of your problem is already solved.

* Keep Your Language Positive and Optimistic – When you talk to your child about staying in his bed, make sure that your language is upbeat and positive, rather than stern or overly authoritarian. Make spending a night in his bed sound like the major milestone it is, not something he must do because he’s afraid he’ll be punished or you’ll be disappointed.

kids* Work Gradually Towards Your Goal – You may not be sleeping in a child free bed the night you start working towards that goal. You may not even be there a week from starting your routine. It’s important to keep the end game in mind, though, rather than focusing on immediate results. After all, you want a lasting solution, not one that’s temporary.

* Get Kids Involved in the Process – Giving your child a bit of ownership over the situation by letting him pick out new sheets, select a special animal to sleep with or even have a bit of say in his bed time can go a long way when you’re trying to reach an understanding about sleep. Let your child know that you want him to be excited about this new chapter in his “big boy” life, and give him some control to reflect that status.

* Make a Game of The Situation – If you set up a system of rewards for every successful night in bed or make each night seem like a fun, new challenge, you may find that you’re having better results than if you’re just trying to lay down the proverbial law to your struggling child.

* Maintain Consistency – When little feet come padding into your room in the wee hours of the morning, it can be easier to just let it slide than to get out of bed and meet the challenge. Consistency is key, though, because you don’t want to send mixed messages to your child. Just get up, lead him back to his bed and avoid engaging with him along the way. With consistent repetition, your child will learn that coming to your room is not a means of getting the results he had in mind.

* Be Patient – It’s not easy to keep your cool when you’re sleep deprived and frustrated, but losing your patience and lashing out is a surefire way to inspire a setback. Make a concerted effort to be patient and understanding, rather than exasperated and angry.

* Reward Successes, Don’t Punish Setbacks – Instead of shaming your child or punishing him when he’s struggling, make a point of rewarding his successful efforts. Understand that your child wants you to be proud of him, and wants to earn your approval, even though the change you’re asking him to make is a big and sometimes scary one.

– Submitted by Ethel Wooten of houstonnanny.com

4 Most Common Child Sleep Problems

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By Rania Paula

stresssleepingPsychologists and physicians estimated that almost 30% of children are suffering with sleep problems at some point during their childhood.

Child sleep problems may affect both emotional and social behavior, which shows an effect on their school performance. Due to this it is very important for the parents and teachers to understand how important sleep is and how sleep disorders can affect teenagers and children.

Here are the common types of child sleep problems:

• Chronic Lung Disease
• Obstructive Sleep Apnea
• Central Apnea of Prematurity
• Central Hypoventilation Syndrome

Chronic Lung Disease:

Usually this is a result of the premature birth, however this may be secondary to lung injury following neonatal period like in sickle cell disease, aspiration syndrome, and neuromuscular disease like muscular dystrophy.

This disease can lead to low levels of oxygen and high carbon dioxide levels in the blood. Sleep study can determine the lung disease. This can be treated with non-invasive ventilator support, oxygen supply, or during severe conditions tracheostomy may be required.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA):

This is one of the most common child sleep problems, which is due to abnormalities in breathing when they are asleep. This condition occurs approximately in 2% of kids, and it is most common problem in preschool aged kids.

OSA diagnosis can be done by evaluating your child during his sleep in the sleep laboratory.

OSA diagnosis can be done by evaluating your child during his sleep in the sleep laboratory. Sleep study is also needed to identify the children of high risk of difficulties from surgery and anesthesia. If this is left untreated this may lead to poor academic performance, high blood count, and heart failure.

Central Apnea of Prematurity:

This is very common in newborn babies. This can be associated with the low heart rate and color changes and it is because of an immaturity of central respiratory drive.

Premature apnea can be evaluated by daytime sleep study or even by cardio-respiratory monitoring. Making your baby to sleep in head elevated tilt position and three-stair-position can help to reduce the problem during the initial stages only.

Central Hypoventilation Syndrome:

This is a problem to the central nervous system that induces signals to breathe. Frequently this can be worsened in the sleep and it is characterized by shallow or even slow breathing, which is inadequate to remove carbon dioxide from lungs.

This may occur while in birth or due to pressure on brainstem. Overnight sleep can be helped to diagnose this. Treatment will be required to relieve brainstem pressure based on the cause.

The support and advice of the health professional or in complex or severe situation a psychologist is necessary for a plan to be successful in dealing with child sleep problems. Sleep programs and educational materials can also be helpful.

– Guest Author, Rania Paula writes for www.sleepwellblog.com. A weblog providing information about various sleep disorders such as insomnia, sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome, sleep deprivation, etc. and there by helping you to have good night sleep.

Healthy Sleep Hygiene Extends Life Expectancy – Part 2

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By John Redfern

sleepContinued from part 1 of this article…..

Well-planned strategies are essential to deep, restorative sleep you can count on, night after night. By learning to avoid common enemies of sleep and trying out a variety of healthy sleep-promoting techniques, you can discover your personal prescription to a good night’s rest. The key is to experiment because what works for some might not work as well for others and it’s important to find the sleep strategies that work best for you.

The first step to improving the quality of your rest is finding out how much sleep you need. How much sleep is enough? While sleep requirements vary slightly from person to person, most healthy adults need at least eight hours of sleep each night to function at their best. Children and teenagers need more, estimated at around 9-10 hours, and babies and infants of course much more than that.

It is worthwhile to observe certain key rules in order to establish a beneficial sleep pattern, or as it is referred to, your circadian rhythm.

● Set a regular bedtime and try to stick to it. Choose a time when you usually feel tired and stick to it even at weekends when tempted to stay up later. If you need to change your current bedtime adjust it gradually by 10 minutes per day.

● Wake up at the same time every day. If you’re getting enough sleep you should wake up naturally and not need to use an alarm, but if you do it usually means that you’re not going to bed early enough.

● Take a nap if you lose some sleep. If you need to make up for a few lost hours, perhaps due to occasional social events or other reasons, take a daytime nap rather than sleeping late.

● Be wise about taking naps. Although this is a great way to recharge the batteries, particularly for older adults, try to do it in the early afternoon and limit it to thirty minutes, so not to cause insomnia.

● Fight evening drowsiness. If you find yourself getting sleepy way before your bedtime, get off the couch and do something mildly stimulating to avoid falling asleep, because if you give in to the drowsiness, you may wake up later in the night and have trouble getting back to sleep.

Many disturbed nights are also caused for couples by one of them snoring and this will keep one of the bedfellows awake – whilst the snorer may also have a disturbed night, but in a different way. This is a recipe for Health disaster and can so easily be overcome and prevented with little trouble or expense. Simple NHS approved remedies like mouthpieces will readily solve the problem. They are effective, fast-acting and a low cost solution that is readily and quickly available without prescription.

The key factors of course are to exercise more, to drink and eat less – particularly late at night, and to stop or reduce smoking. These are all areas where your GP or local Health Service will offer advice and support you as you aim for better sleep, better health, and a longer life.

– John Redfern worked for 15 years at leading London Advertising agencies writing on many international products and markets during that time, before moving into a consultancy role, where he has gained long experience of writing on important matters of personal health. John has had in-depth involvement in a broad spectrum of subjects in this area, covering all possible age groups. Through his work as a consultant to Sleeppro, John has acquired an in-depth knowledge of snoring and sleep apnoea, and the many serious health problems with which they are so closely associated.

Healthy Sleep Hygiene Extends Life Expectancy – Part 1

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By John Redfern

SleepingWomanGetting good quality sleep every night is imperative to both good physical and mental health and keeps us functioning normally as human beings.

On the physical side, poor sleep patterns, late nights and sleep deprivation over extended periods of time can lead to several chronic health-related conditions, among them obesity, heart disease, diabetes, chronic headaches and depression. In addition, sleep deprivation is known to influence other physical aspects of our well-being particularly immunity levels, growth and weight control.

As far as mental health is concerned, the key areas that a lack of good sleep can affect are mostly cognitive, including both memory and learning skills, along with influencing your mood, creativity and imagination. These facts apply not only to adults but also to children where good regular sleep patterns are critical to their long term health and development.

New research suggests that the UK is lagging behind progress being made by similar countries on many indicators for ill health – particularly with sleep disorders such as snoring and sleep apnoea which are often overlooked as being a serious contributor to poor health as we age.

During the 20 years from 1990 to 2010 a study in The Lancet study stated that average life expectancy increased by 4.2 years in the UK to 79.9 years. Across the same time period however, the premature death rate had hardly changed in the UK for both men and women aged 20-54 and among the leading causes were heart disease, cancers and chronic lung disease. These are linked to avoidable risk factors such as smoking, alcohol excess, high blood pressure, snoring and obesity, all still too common in the UK.

Leading UK Health Risk factors

● Tobacco smoke (including second-hand smoke)
● High blood pressure
● Obesity
● Too little exercise
● Alcohol use
● Poor diet

Many of these can be identified through sleep disorders such as heavy snoring and are closely related to these factors – something that can be easily taken in hand and is often very preventable with co-operation.

Stay tuned for part 2 of this article shortly…..

– John Redfern worked for 15 years at leading London Advertising agencies writing on many international products and markets during that time, before moving into a consultancy role, where he has gained long experience of writing on important matters of personal health. John has had in-depth involvement in a broad spectrum of subjects in this area, covering all possible age groups. Through his work as a consultant to Sleeppro, John has acquired an in-depth knowledge of snoring and sleep apnoea, and the many serious health problems with which they are so closely associated.

Understanding Chronic Sleep Disturbance

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By Stefanie Gomez

sleepYou can feel it when it happens and when you begin to wake up after a night of restless sleep. It’s hard to get out of bed when your body is telling you that it hasn’t had enough sleep to be alert, energetic or ready for the day. You can hit that snooze alarm a few times before you get up, and when you do get moving you don’t feel quite right. Thankfully for most of us this is a pretty rare occurrence but for some, chronic sleep disturbance is an every day ordeal with a variety of negative health and emotional consequences.

The first step is to identify whether you meet the criteria for a chronic sleep disorder. In an article by Health Central titled “How Do You Know If You Have a Sleep Disorder” – Allen Blaivas, M.D., goes through an inventory of questions patients should ask themselves in order to identify the frequency and causes of the problem. There are also a variety of sleep disorder inventories or surveys that a medical professional can administer to identify the presence of a formal chronic sleep disturbance, and identify some of the stressors or causes.

The Impact of Bad Sleep

There are a variety of health implications for people who experience a poor quality of sleep, and long term deprivation can have a tremendous impact on performance, mood, weight and other health aspects. According to Dr. Susan Redline, a sleep specialist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (Boston) “Sleep deficiency can affect mood and the ability to make memories and learn, but it also affects metabolism, appetite, blood pressure, levels of inflammation in the body and perhaps even the immune response.”

ABC News reported on the topic in 2012 with their investigative report “5 Health Hazards Linked to Lack of Sleep” which outlined the specific known emotional and physical health consequences of sleep deprivation. The article reported on a recent study of 5,600 participants which was presented at the 26th annual meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies in Boston.

bellymeasurementsmallThe report found conclusive evidence of:

• Increased obesity

• Increased hypertension and risk for heart attack and stroke

• Increased diabetes risk (carbohydrate rich diet)

• Depression and Anxiety (reduced serotonin)

The Causes

Chronic sleep disturbances can be caused by lifestyle factors or existing health issues including back and neck pain or sleep apnea. It can be frequently sourced back to obesity, which puts an added strain on the body creating neck, leg and lower back pain. Sleep apnea is also more common with individuals who are over weight

Frequently the quality of the bed and pillows can be blamed for bad sleep. Back and neck pain can be aggravated and worsened by pillows that do not provide adequate lumbar support. Talk to a sleep specialist to evaluate your preferred sleeping position and the appropriate pillow for you.

How to Improve Your Sleep

Before consulting a physician you can explore some common suggestions that might help you restore your quality rest. Sometimes it is a matter of making a few small changes to your diet or sleep routine in order to resolve the issue.

http://yourhealthjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/kickhabit.jpg• Avoid eating at least two hours before bed. An active digestion will make it difficult to sleep.

• Unplug electronics, laptops, mobile phones and other devices and do not bring them into the bedroom. You may be tempted to check messages rather than relaxing and focusing on getting a good night of rest.

• Put a “worry book” beside your bed and write down your concerns, check lists or other items that are keeping you from getting to sleep. Writing them on paper will help you remove the worry and get back to sleep.

• Seek medical advice if sleep problems persist for more than two weeks.

– Stefanie Gomez is associated with Essentia, manufacturers of the world’s only natural memory-foam mattresses. She understands the importance about green/Healthy living hence she generally blogs about eco-friendly lifestyle, health/wellness, healthy and sustainable living options. She is also passionate about reading, photography, cooking, gadgets and yoga.

Cure Insomnia Naturally

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By Dr. Greg Eckel

sleepOptimum health requires consistent, adequate and restful sleep. One biological fact appears indisputable: any accrued “sleep debt” will have to be repaid, that is, we’re going to have to catch up with our sleep or we run the risk of compromising our health.

The health benefits of regular, adequate and restful sleep include a stronger immune system, a healthier heart, and unimpaired cognitive function and memory. So, if we know that we need 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night, then why do 50-70 million Americans still suffer from some kind of sleep disorder? And why is insomnia prevalent in 10-20% of the global population?

Many factors can interfere with our ability to “hit the hay:” technology, alcohol, caffeine, depression, stress and anxiety, and/or lack of nutrition. Reducing and managing the varying influences of these factors in our daily lives can lead to better “sleep hygiene” and “fatigue management.”

Insomnia costs US citizens $16 billion a year in extra medical costs. So, what can we do about it now? And where do we start? First, let’s look at some new research demonstrating the toll insomnia is taking on our health.

healthyheartbpA new Norwegian study (March, 2013) from the European Heart Journal shows that insomnia sufferers are three times more likely to experience heart failure.

The study directly showed that the greater the self-reported number of three particular symptoms of insomnia, that is, difficulty in falling to sleep, difficulty in maintaining sleep, and non-restorative sleep, the greater the risk of heart failure. A 17% increased chance of developing heart failure was associated with having one symptom, while a 92% increased chance was associated with having two symptoms. And having all three symptoms nearly tripled the likelihood of heart failure!

Evaluating the symptoms of insomnia may play a large role in cardiovascular prevention. Chronic insomnia can lead to increased blood pressure and increased heart rate, which are two known risk factors in heart failure. In other words, nipping insomnia in the bud could make it significantly less likely for developing heart failure down the road.

Insomnia is multifactorial. Hormone balance plays a significant role: no natural or pharmaceutical agent will be strong enough to counteract your own cortisol, a stress hormone that your body produces. Reducing stress is key to healthy sleep patterns.

Getting technology out of your bedroom is imperative. Electronic devices with back lit screens have a detrimental influence on your melatonin release and can significantly impact your sleep.

Other sleep hygiene tips: don’t eat too close to bed time. Eat large meals at least four hours before bedtime. Alcohol is detrimental for getting a restful night’s sleep. People who drink a glass of their favorite alcoholic beverage do not sleep through the night for a few reasons. Alcohol is a diuretic which means more trips to the bathroom through the night. Alcohol interrupts the sleep cycle.

yogaposeBlood sugar dips will wake an individual from sleep. A few nuts (almonds, cashews) before bed will provide a healthy solution. Exercise is a mixed bag: some really enjoy a vigorous workout at night, though most should develop low impact exercise habits before bed like walking, stretching, and meditation activities. Engaging in sex near bedtime releases the potent relaxing hormone oxytocin, which will help sleep.

Waking up consistently at 3 am is a tip off that you have liver-lung block—a Chinese medicine term that responds favorably to acupuncture and herbs.

– Dr Greg Eckel N.D and co- owner of Nature Cures Clinic can be reached through his website naturecuresclinic.com

How You Can Fight Common Sleep Disorders Like Snoring Or Sleep Apnea

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By Brandon Travis

sleepSleep disorders affect a large percentage of Americans, up to 40 percent as some studies have suggested, debilitating one of our most precious resources: sleep. We need sleep to perform even our most elemental tasks not to mention the more difficult ones like cognition, concentration, athletics or even operating a car. Getting a good night’s sleep is tantamount to being able to perform well in life and sleep disorders like snoring or sleep apnea make getting a good night’s sleep a constant struggle. However, there are plenty of tools you can use to combat snoring and sleep apnea and the rest you deserve.

While there are a plethora of known and unknown sleep disorders out there, ranging from night terrors, to narcolepsy, to work-shift sleep disorders, to restless leg syndrome, insomnia, snoring and sleep apnea are three of the most common. But in order to look at ways to fight these common sleep disorders, we first have to understand what causes them in the first place.

Insomnia is a very common sleep disorder, so common in fact that there really isn’t one specific reason for it; the causes depend upon the person and can range from anxiety, depression and other mood disorders, to lifestyle problems like diet and lack of exercise to stress to allergens. And though there are many prescription drugs available that can help you get to sleep, most of these medications leave you feeling groggy and unrested. However, simple lifestyle changes can sometimes be enough to pull you out of your insomniac funk and get some sleep: exercising regularly, amending your diet to include more natural foods, eating a bed-time snack of dairy and carbs, meditating, getting into a sleep schedule—all of these can bring about solutions to insomnia.

snoringSnoring and sleep apnea are often comorbid and have some of the same underlying causes and treatments. Snoring is the result of occluded breathing passages in the nose or throat; sleep apnea is when breathing is abruptly halted during sleep, resulting in gasps and oxygen depletion, and if untreated can have dire consequences. Both have their own different kinds and causes. The occlusion in snoring is often caused by blockage of the throat, either through fatty tissue, allergies, posture or a general degradation of the throat muscles; it’s most commonly found in adults over 40, the obese or overweight, chronic users of alcohol, cigarettes or other drugs/medication and more often in men than women. Sleep apnea has a couple different kinds: the first, obstructive sleep apnea is a result of the same blocked airways seen in snoring, and snoring is usually precipitant; the second kind is called central sleep apnea and has to do with failures of the central nervous system; the third is a combination of the first two and is called, appropriately, complex sleep apnea.

Thankfully, snoring and sleep apnea can be treated in many of the same methods. Losing weight and getting your body back to its recommended weight is one of the best ways to fight these sleep disorders, as is eliminating or minimizing alcohol and cigarette use—especially in the last couple hours before bed. You can also help to control these sleep disorders by adjusting your sleeping position, sleeping on your side or stomach instead of your back. If allergens are the reason, making your bedroom into a hypoallergenic chamber might be the way to go; which might mean that your dog or cat has to sleep elsewhere at night. Certain vocal exercises have also been found to alleviate some of the symptoms of snoring and sleep apnea as they build up the muscles in the throat. For more info on vocal exercises check out http://www.thestopsnoringexerciseprogram.org/. Changing your diet and getting into a regular sleep schedule can also be a big step in fighting these unpleasant sleep disorders.

Sleeping is a crucial part of our lives, and making sure we get the sleep we need sometimes seems like an uphill battle. By using these techniques, you should be able to turn the tide of the nighttime war and start your sleep disorders on a, hopefully permanent, retreat.

– Brandon Travis likes to spend his free time swimming and training for his next triathlon in the spring. He works in the health and wellness sector, helping people live better and healthier lives. When he’s not working out he likes to review sites like iRollover snoring device.

Take One Mandala Before Bedtime And Rest Easy

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by Janet F. Williams

sleepCan’t sleep? Today’s multitasking lifestyles mean many of you are go-go-going until it’s past bedtime. Research shows turning off the TV or computer at least an hour before bed rest is ideal, but in real life that doesn’t always happen. Over-stimulation compounds your racing thoughts about work, family, and other responsibilities. You can’t be at your best when you don’t get your rest. What to do? Draw a mandala!

Much of the mental churning keeping you awake at night takes place in the left side of your brain. Drawing a mandala helps move you out of the analytical left side and into the right side, where creativity flows. There’s no on-off switch to control your thoughts, but you can activate certain brain activity centers and calm others. Drawing a mandala can help.

Simply put, a mandala is a circle. Cultures around the world embrace the mandala design as a representation for the universality of wholeness. Mandalas appear in many forms. No doubt you have seen them, from the ying-yang symbol to the Mayan calendar to a dangling pendant. All you need is a blank piece of paper and a pen, and you, too, can create a mandala.

Start with a dot or small circle in the center of the page. That center is you. Draw out from there – shapes, flower petals, squiggles or lightning bolts. Don’t worry about being a great artist. Give yourself permission to let the lines work for you, irrespective of how beautiful, misshapen, or odd your drawing may appear. Don’t fixate on perfection, erasing, or somehow correcting your artwork to fit an idea of how the picture should look. Let it happen and let it out. Journaling is another helpful bedtime exercise. However, words require a different part of the brain and may get you thinking again. Instead of words, use lines, shapes, shading, or an actual picture to keep using the right side of your brain.

sleepfaceYou can put emotion into your picture – joy, fear, gratitude, or anger, using the pen (or other drawing instrument) to press lightly, or hard, to help express yourself. Let your feelings pass through your pen. The object is to draw long enough to move out of your left brain while quieting unwanted noisy thoughts so you can sleep. When you have shifted your brain activity and sense completion, turn out the light.

Buy a small book of blank pages to keep by your bedside. Get into the habit of drawing a mandala before you sleep. You will be amazed at how different each picture looks depending on what kind of day you had. As with many exercises, your ability to use the mandala will improve with practice, as might your artistic ability, and you may find some of your mandalas take less than a minute. And guess what? That gives you more time to enjoy your rest. Good night!

– Janet F. Williams is a consultant for personal and professional development, and is the author of “You Don’t Ask, You Don’t Get: Proven Techniques to Get More Out of Life.” Please visit: www.janetfwilliams.com.

Why Am I So Tired??

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By Judy Bennett

mansleepingatdeskDo you wake up before your alarm clock? Do you feel rested and refreshed, ready for the day’s challenges? Do you have enough energy to sail through your workday, and participate in activities you love after work?

I didn’t think so.

I’m not talking about the kind of fatigue that happens after working a double shift, or from shoveling wet snow, or being up all night with a colicky baby. I’m talking about the draggy, foggy feeling that clings to you even after a decent night’s sleep. This kind is often called adrenal fatigue. When the body is under persistent physical, mental, or emotional stress, the adrenal glands work overtime to secrete fight-or-flight hormones. Chemically speaking, you are on high alert all the time, and this is exhausting to your system. These stressors include inadequate sleep, not enough exercise, poor nutrition, and good old-fashioned stress. Let’s look at each of these habits to see how they impact your energy level and what you can do to change them.

Sleep: Yes, you do need eight hours of sleep. If you’re sick or have thyroid problems, you need even more. Sleep is when your cells repair themselves and it’s very important for your brain function, mood, and energy. Try this formula to help you get the sleep you need. Pick the time you want to get up, then deduct eight and a half hours. The extra half-hour is the time you’ll start getting ready for bed. Allow ten minutes for preparing for tomorrow, ten minutes for hygiene, and ten minutes for reading, meditation, etc. Then it’s lights out eight hours before your alarm is set to go off.

malepushupExercise: Regular, vigorous exercise goes a long way toward dissipating those fight-or-flight hormones. But let’s back up a step. What can you do when that after-lunch slump hits? Here’s an easy exercise that will perk you up wherever you are. Clasp your hands behind your back, lift them as high as you can, and look up. Hold that pose for 30 seconds. Or, if your office is more casual, do thirty jumping jacks.

Nutrition: There are countless volumes of information devoted to how and what you should eat, but we’ll stick to the two biggest energy-stealers: caffeine and sugar. Sure, they make you feel good for a little while. But they take your metabolism on a roller coaster ride that leads to fatigue, irritability, and brain fog. The rapid crash also creates cravings for even more caffeine and sugar. Eliminate them from your diet, period. When you feel sleepy, try this instead. Breathe through your nose as fast as you can for 10 seconds. Instant energy boost!

stressStress: Giving your adrenals a break can be as simple as taking the time to have fun. It sends good versus stressful chemicals coursing through you. What makes you happy? Reading? Crafting? Gardening? Whatever it is, do it. Ideally, you should make time for yourself each day, but several times a week is okay too. Start with ten minutes and build up from there.

Have a fabulous, energy-filled day! Your couch will miss you.

– Judy Bennett is a board certified holistic health practitioner and a member of the International Association of Wellness Professionals and the Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior.