Menopause Insomnia. 10 Natural ways to stop tossing & turning and get a great nights sleep.

Number 10 is my secret weapon…

menopause insomnia
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I hope it can help you too x. Please read the disclaimer for more info.

Menopause Insomnia

Menopause Insomnia is one of the most frustrating symptoms of Menopause. Menopause and sleep are not words that generally go together comfortably. However, there are many helpful supplements and products that can help you sleep better. 

For someone who has slept pretty well all my life, I was shocked by the disruption that swinging perimenopausal hormones can bring to my night time shuteye.

If you are going through the Menopause you might be experiencing similar symptoms…

  • Do you wake up at 3 am and then start tossing and turning, unable to get back off to sleep until frustratingly a few minutes before the alarm? Then you wake up feeling wrecked and have to face the busy and exhausting day ahead.
  • Do you wake up drenched in sweat in a damp and uncomfortable bed?
  • Do you find your partner is just too hot {and not in a good way} to be beside in bed, making you feel like you are going to spontaneously combust?
  •  Do you wake up at the slightest sound and then find that you can’t get back to sleep. Pets moving around the house or snoring partners can make it impossible to snooze back off. 
  • Do you get restless legs which make it very difficult to lie still and feel calm enough to sleep?
  • Do you feel anxiety and depression creep over you as you lie wide awake and your brain decides to worry about every possible random thing it can at 3 am?

Yup. All the Menopausal Ladies in the house stand up! We have all been there. 

It’s extremely hard to cope with life and carry on with all the millions of things you need to do when you are running on empty. Sleep is so important for both physical and mental health. The disruption that menopause insomnia can cause can have a major impact on the rest of your life. It can affect your temper and relationships, your work and your mental and physical health. 

Getting your sleep back is one of the major challenges of the perimenopausal and postmenopausal transition period and probably one of the most important as it affects so much of the rest of your life.

Menopause Insomnia & Sleep Problems

Menopause Insomnia & Sleep Problems

Why does menopause affect sleep?

As with everything Menopause related it comes down to hormone changes. Both estrogen and progesterone drop during the menopause transition. Progesterone is a sleep producing hormone, so lower levels may make it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep, hence Menopause Insomnia. Awesome

How can I sleep better during menopause?

The good news is that there are many completely natural ways of improving your sleep.

Some of them are common sense ideas which if implemented can go a long way to helping you sleep better. 

The following ideas are classed as good “sleep hygiene”. However, I hate that phrase. It conjures up nightmare images of a starchy 1970’s style hospital matron chasing me with a bedpan [well, maybe that’s just me}, so let’s call it a bedtime plan instead. 

Your bedtime plan should incorporate the following.

  • Avoid eating a large heavy meal before bedtime. Processing heavy meals can trigger hot flashes 
  • Avoid alcohol before bed. It may seem like it helps you go to sleep but the action of your body processing the alcohol means you are much more likely to wake in a hot sweat with palpitations at 3 am.
  • Don’t have a TV in the bedroom and don’t watch depressing stuff like the news last thing at night. It will just stay in your subconscious and cause anxiety. Read a book instead which helps the brain to relax
  • Don’t nap in the daytime. It doesn’t make up for lost sleep but may make it harder to sleep at night.
  • Enter a calm state before bed. Listen to hypnotherapy or meditation recordings.
  • Try to have a fixed nighttime routine. Go to bed at the same time, not too late and spend some time winding down before sleep.

Hormone Imbalance and Sleep Problems

Balancing your hormones is KEY to getting your sleep back on track…

Most of the Menopause sleep problems that you suffer from stem from Hormone Imbalances. Some symptoms of hormone induced sleep problems can include:

  • Night Sweats
  • Waking in the early hours and being unable to get back to sleep
  • Night anxiety
  • Feeling tired and wired
  • Falling asleep during the day
  • Fatigue

If you balance your hormones your sleep will improve.

You can discover if you have a hormone imbalance by completing this 60 second quiz.

hormones


Natural Sleep aids that help with menopause insomnia

However, the ideas above can help so far but sometimes we need a little more assistance to find that elusive sleep. If like me, you don’t want to take heavy knockout sleeping tablets, there are some great natural ways that will improve your sleep.

I have become a connoisseur of sleep products, trying everything over recent years, so this is my top 10 list of things that I found helpful. 

Number 10 is my secret weapon and works like a dream every time for me.

Always consult your doctor or physician before you begin taking a supplement or make any changes to your existing medication and supplement routine. I am not giving medical advice nor am I qualified to do so. Herbal Supplements may interfere with your existing medication so please always check with your doctor first.

10 Natural Ways To beat menopause insomnia

Hops

Hops are renowned for their soporific properties. Scientific research shows that Hops can increase sleep time AND help to lower body temperature. Theres even evidence that Hops may decrease hot flashes. This is a major win/win when it comes to menopause and sleep so Hops are definitely worth trying.

They can be taken as a tea or a tincture or as a straight up supplement. I find this the easiest way to take Hops as I’m not keen on the taste. A gentle sleep aid that doesn’t make you feel hungover in the morning.

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Cool Pillow

These pillows are a genius idea. Memory foam on one side and gorgeous cooling gel on the other side. You can flip over to the cool side if you feel a night sweat happening and flip back if not. Really enables you to keep control of your temperature at night. Awesome.

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Menopace Night

Menopace Night is formulated to reduce hot flashes and promote deeper sleep. It contains good old Hops as discussed above which helps with sleep. Its other ingredients include Chamomile and 5HTP which can raise serotonin which in turn can prevent hot flashes.

Hot flashes and night sweats are a major cause of Menopause Insomnia so reducing these will really help.

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Gentle Non-Constipating Iron

Restless legs can be a big issue during Menopause. This twitchy jumpy and irritating  condition  can be awful and keep you from sleeping. I have had major trouble with restless legs over the years. At the height of my struggles I discovered I was severely anaemic. Iron supplements corrected this and the restless legs subsided. I can’t promise it will be the same for you but it is worth getting your iron levels checked at your doctors. {It’s also worth getting your calcium levels checked if you have restless legs.}

Its SO important to get the gentle non-conspitating kind when supplementing with iron. You KNOW its absolutely worth the slightly higher price right!.

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Magnesium Sleep Spray

Research shows that magnesium increases the neurotransmitter GABA in the brain, calming your thinking and helping you ease into sleep. Magnesium oil is easily absorbed though the skin and acts quickly and soothingly. It’s quite common to be low in magnesium too.

Magnesium can also help prevent cramps and muscle spasms as well as improving anxiety and depression.

One study found that magnesium improved insomnia caused by Restless Leg Syndrome as it can ease the muscles involved.

This sleep spray has the added advantage of other essential oils including Cedarwood, Lavender, Sweet Marjoram, and Clary Sage which add to its snooze inducing effect.

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Half and half warm and cool duvet

I have to admit that I haven’t tried this actual duvet {mainly due to cost} but its a brilliant idea. A duvet which has a warm half for your partner and a thinner side for you to prevent over heating at night.

In summer, my husband and I use a cobbled together version of seperate thinner and thicker single duvets and that really helps but it would be nice to have this proper version, rather than two duvets slipping all over the place. Maybe I will treat myself…

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Vitamin D

Several studies link low Vitamin D levels to poor sleep quality and shorter sleep duration.

It’s really easy to get low in Vitamin D too, especially if you live somewhere with shorter days and lower levels of sunlight. I live in the wild North of England where days and summers are short {and rainy} so it was no surprise to find that my Vitamin D levels were shockingly low!

Vitamin D, known as the sunshine vitamin, is a good all round vitamin to take for general health and wellness and is potentially preventative of some diseases whilst helping with the sleep issues.

I take Naturewise as its gluten free and high strength, but there are many different brands available.

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Valerian

Valerian is natures version of sleeping tablets. It works extremely effectively but doesn’t make you wake up feeling like you have been coshed over the head.

I like to use Valerian in tincture form as I add it to my pre-bed cup of tea to make a snoozy brew. It can taste a little funky though so in that case tablets may be better for you. {Don’t add it to teas that already contain Valerian}.

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Sleepy Tea

There are numerous different teas that you can make before bed in order to calm your mind and help you sleep. Most contain some variation of Chamomile. Experiment with different ones to see what you like. I love these Clipper Teas but there are so many different ones to choose from and I swap about all the time.

Having a cup of tea before bed has become part of my nighttime ritual, which is soothing in itself and something I look forward to. I think the heat of the drink helps you feel sleepy too.

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Epsom salts bath

This is my ultimate secret weapons against insomnia!. An Epsom salts Bath before bed.

Epsom salts are magnesium sulfate, so having an Epsom salt bath is a gentle form of magnesium therapy with all the benefits mentioned above. You absorb the magnesium through the skin. Combined with the relaxation of the bath and the warmth this is a highly effective and knock-out combination for making you sleep. I find that I will sleep through the night too.

Epsom salts baths are so effective that you really need to do this right before you go to bed. Don’t have a bath before you need to go and do anything sensible because you won’t get there! Half an hour after the Epsom Salts Bath you will be horizontal and knocking out the ZZZ’s if you are anything like me…

Brilliant for when you get into a run of nights of insomnia and you start to dread going to bed. This can help you break the cycle.

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BONUS – I couldn’t leave this one out!

Eye Mask

I know I do go on about the benefits of eye masks, but they are brilliant and such a cheap and effective fix that I want to make sure everyone knows about them.

As humans we are designed to sleep in cave like darkness. However, lights in the bedroom {street lights, lights from the alarm or phone etc} however dim, keep our brain on alert.

An eye mask allows your brain to “power down” properly and get better, deeper sleep with less chance of waking. It has truly changed my quality of sleep so much. Definitely worth a try.

I just buy these cheap packs of 3 as my cats tend to run off with them and hide them!

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I hope you can find a combination of methods that allows you to find that restful sleep that’s so elusive to us menopausal ladies.

I would love to hear your suggestions of natural sleep aids that worked well for you. Please share in the comments. I can then add them to the post to help other people discover them too. Hopefully this post can grow into a resource of tried and tested methods for stopping Menopause Insomnia.

Let’s support each other through this tricky period in our lives.

PS – If these tips have been helpful please download my FREE ebook below. The Complete Menopause Natural Remedies Checklist.

This ebook contains tips on supplements & strategies for healing Menopause Symptoms. Targeting common Menopause issues such as Hot Flashes, Night Sweats, Weight Gain, Anxiety & Depression, Loss of Libido and more with over 60 ideas to help you deal with menopause naturally.

FREE HORMONE SYMPTOM CHECKLIST

HEALING YOUR HORMONES IS KEY TO HEALING YOUR SLEEP.

HERES THE KEY TO GETTING YOUR LIFE BACK! [EVEN IF YOUR HORMONES ARE OUT OF BALANCE!]

Hormone Symptom Checklist EbookHave you struggled with sleep problems, fatigue, night sweats, weight gain, depression, anxiety, hot flashes, low libido, and other seemingly un-related menopause symptoms?
Do you just don’t feel like your old self and wonder how to get back there?.

It’s time to take your health into your own hands and heal your hormones.

Download the FREE E-book NOW to discover the hormone causes of sleep issues, fatigue  weight gain, mood swings, low libido and more…

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Helen

Menopause and Perimenopause can be a tricky time to pass through. I certainly had a turbulent journey. I learnt a lot from my intense battle. I rediscovered my Menopause Mojo and you can too. I truly believe that Menopause can be the start of the best part of your life. I am an Artist, Certified Transformation Life Coach, Holistic Health Coach, Hypnosis practitioner and woman's health researcher. NB. I am not a doctor or qualified to give medical advice. I merely share what has worked for me. I hope it can help you too. x