Monday, July 20, 2009

Health Benefits of Marine Phtyoplanktons

at 10:35 AM 0 comments
What is Marine Phytoplankton?


Plankton is a Greek word which means wanderer or drifter and it is used to describe the class of marine plants and animals which have limited ability or no ability to to move or swim.Thus they simply drift in the ocean currents and occupy most of the surface area of the earth's oceans.Marine means "of the ocean", so marine plankton are organisms which can live and grow in salt water. Some marine plankton, like the microscopic animal organisms called zooplankton,do have limited movement,as do a few species of the microscopic plant organisms called phytoplankton.

Marine Phytoplankton,also known as marine micro algae,are microscopic single-cell plants that are the most abundant "vegetation" in the ocean.They are capable of turning water and light energy from the sun (phyto means light) into nutrients and oxygen,through a process called photosynthesis. According to NASA, marine algae are responsible for producing up to 90% of the Earth's oxygen supply!

The Amazon rain forest may be an important producer of oxygen, but the marine phytoplankton in the oceans that cover 80% of the Earth's surface are by far the greatest producers of the oxygen which sustains human life.Marine phytoplankton produce far more oxygen than all other plant life combined. They are vital in maintaining the earth’s atmosphere and the oxygen we need to survive.

Phytoplankton are also the plant organisms most likely to be affected by global warming and climate change.So do not think that "global warming" will not affect you personally, for if it limits the phytoplankton growth then you will have much less oxygen to breathe!

With the ability to convert sunlight, warmth, water, and minerals into proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins and amino acids, marine phytoplanktons are considered to be the basis of all other life forms on earth. And they are the basic food source which directly or indirectly supports all life in the oceans of the world - from microscopic shrimp to gigantic whales.

    While marine phytoplankton is at the very bottom of the sea's Food Chain, it should be at the very top of your shopping list of life-sustaining, nutritious foods!



Why? The elements and electrolytes in marine phytoplankton are ideal for the human body.

When the human body has the nutrients it needs, it is able to maintain all its complex systems in balance - a state which is called "homeostasis". But when critical components are missing or deficient, the body becomes unbalanced - a state we often refer to as "disease" (dis-ease)

.

    Most degenerative diseases are the consequence of deficient nutrition - yet it is a sad fact that in the years-long training of medical doctors in North America, less than a day is devoted to teaching anything about nutrition and its importance in disease prevention. Medical students learn all about using man-made drugs to treat disease after it occurs, but little about promoting healthy nutrition as a means of disease prevention. Drugs can be effective in treating the symptoms of a disease, but many fail to deal with the disease which is causing the symptoms.

    Doesn't it make more sense to find out how NOT to have arthritis or heartburn or a headache, than to just keep taking a drug that only stops the pain for a while?


Health and Nutrition

Healthy nutrition is the basis for good health and longevity, but we seem to be on our own when it comes to getting good nutrition and staying healthy. Even the "Recommended Daily Allowance" (RDA) which the FDA requires manufacturers of vitamin and mineral products to cite on their labels is really nothing but the minimum nutrition needed to keep a person alive, not necessarily healthy and free of disease. Many people take vitamin supplements which are pressed into hard tablets and pills that are only 10 to 20 percent absorbed by our bodies, and are of little help in ensuring healthy nutrition. Liquid vitamin and mineral supplements can be up to 90% absorbed by our bodies, and when they are of the whole food type they also contain all the natural enzymes necessary for the proper digestion and assimilation of the nutrients they contain. Nutrients which cannot be absorbed into your cells cannot help you be healthy.

So it makes sense that consuming the entire body of tiny single-celled plants like phytoplankton means you will ingest ALL of the nutritious substances which the living organism contains and uses to sustain its own life. This is what makes Marine Phytoplankton such a potent source of nutrition that can feed us at the cellular level.

Supplying the missing substances allows the body to regain its optimal state of health and well-being.



Add Diatoms to Your Diet


Marine micro algae consist of hundreds of species of single-celled plant organisms. The temperate waters off the coast of Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada, are home to a variety of more than 200 micro algae species, including the primary producers called diatoms.

    Under the right conditions of light, nutrients, and mixing, these diatoms grow very rapidly. Each year at springtime in the Northern Hemisphere when conditions are optimal, the growth of diatoms in the ocean waters is at a peak - an event known as "spring bloom" - which dramatically changes the colors of the ocean in the photos taken by orbiting satellites.

    These rapid growth conditions are now being reproduced at a 30 million dollar Sea Farm on ocean-front property in a special controlled environment in large million-liter tanks near Vancouver BC on the Pacific coast of Canada. In a patent-pending process, the fast-growing marine phytoplankton is cultivated and harvested - from 25 to 45 metric tons per day! There is no farm on earth which can come close to producing that amount of nutritious food so quickly and on so little land - and without putting phosphates and pesticides into the ground.


Diatoms reproduce by cell division, and under optimal conditions like those created at the Sea Farm, a diatom can divide up to three times per day! That means the original diatom cell creates one more new cell three times per day, so at the end of the day there are four diatoms instead of one. But each of those new cells also divide into two more cells, which each divide into two more cells, and so on. As all the new diatom cells keep feeding and reproducing three times per day, the number of diatoms grows at an astounding rate!

A plant which can grow this fast is a powerful food for gigantic whales - so why not for humans too?,

With this patent-pending technology, spring bloom conditions are reproduced in a controlled environment, both indoors and outdoors, so the amazing natural rate of growth can be duplicated or even exceeded. The plankton harvested from the growing tanks of the Sea Farm is not contaminated by the many kinds of tiny animal life found within the open ocean plankton, or by any toxic chemicals dumped into the open ocean waters.


Taking vitamin and mineral pills is fine, but with a "whole food" product containing marine phytoplankton supplements, you are consuming the entire body of a vital and nutritious plant and the whole range of nutrients each of these rapidly-growing plants contains.

The exclusive extraction process allows the Sea Farm to combine the benefits of phytonutrients with a natural and balanced composition of sea minerals. Phytonutrients are natural plant-based chemicals that promote proper metabolic functions in the cells of the human body.



Why Would Whale Food Be Good for You ?


Plankton is the source of nutrition for the majority of marine animals, from the smallest fish and crustacean hatchlings which compose the masses of tiny animal life called "krill", to the largest fish and mammals that live in the sea.

The largest marine mammals (blue whales, which grow 80 to 95 feet in length) and the largest fish (whale sharks) eat only krill and marine phytoplankton. An average-sized blue whale will eat 2,000 to 9,000 pounds (900 to 4100 kg) of marine plankton each day during the summer feeding season in cold, arctic waters. They tend to live from 80 to 150 years or more, and are sexually active well into "old age".

That tells us something about the incredible potential of marine phytoplankton as an ultra-healthy food source for land mammals like us!

Maybe we should be eating some of this plankton "whale food" if we want to remain as healthy and active as those long-living blue whales and whale sharks?

    We live in a society which has come to accept the ever-growing incidence of disease as almost "normal", and relies on man-made drugs to simply treat symptoms while ignoring the root cause. It is important to understand that "disease" is NOT normal, and proper nutrition enables our natural immune system to deal with almost any of the organisms that cause disease.

    Many ailments and degenerative diseases are actually caused by a lack of specific vitamins or minerals that are necessary for certain important chemical processes to take place in the body. So it becomes quite obvious that getting certain nutrients may prevent the diseases which may be caused by a lack of those same nutrients.

    Yet the medical doctors who diagnose the diseases and prescribe the drugs seldom try to determine whether the patient is getting healthy nutrition or not. According to Linus Pauling, winner of two Nobel Prizes, a human body which is receiving proper nutrition is quite capable of dealing with almost any disease - from degenerative diseases to the diseases caused by bacteria and virus infections.


Did you know that the human body is constructed to work well for over 100 years? We could have a long and active life if we would only put as much effort into maintaining our bodies as we put into maintaining our short-lived automobiles! Some people do remain in a healthy and active state well into their nineties; while others are diseased and decrepit (or dead from a disease) before they even turn seventy.

You do NOT have to accept the common belief that degenerative diseases are just a "normal" part of getting older. The truly "normal" state of health for senior citizens is "healthy" and "drug-free" - not "diseased" and "drugged"!

Think about this... after retirement at age 65 you could live for another THIRTY YEARS - if you take care of your health and nutrition. Would you want to be healthy and active and enjoying life throughout many years of hard-earned retirement - or be sitting and suffering in a wheelchair in some nursing home, taking five different drugs for five different disease conditions?

The way to optimal health and longevity is through optimal nutrition. We need to supplement our diet with healthy whole foods that provide all the nutrients missing from our regular diet of factory-farmed and over-processed foods.

For many of us, a food supplement with marine phytoplankton is the best solution to getting the wholesome and healthy nutrition which we have been seeking.




Phytonutrients from Marine Phytoplankton offer potentially promising effects in human physiology:


  • immune system enhancement

  • general nutrition - provide ultra-potent lipids to enhance brain function

  • energy - increases energy and vitality

  • promotes better sleep - more restful and restorative

  • antioxidant protection from cancers and degenerative diseases

  • cardiovascular health - supports a healthy heart

  • blood pressure control

  • cholesterol reduction

  • liver health - supports a healthy liver

  • neurological support - mental alertness, ADHD, Parkinsons, and general dementia

  • alkalizing - the balancing of body pH away from unhealthy excess acidicity

  • anti-inflammatory effects on membranes - promotes relief from joint pain

  • cell wall improvement through increased permeability and flexibility

  • detoxification and cleansing - supports removal of toxins from cells and organs

  • skin care - such as acne, psoriasis, dermatitis

  • better vision - more effective than Lutein

  • blood sugars - stabilizes blood sugar levels (aids those who are diabetic or hyperglycemic)

  • supports weight loss


Now you can consume this super whole food and get a healthy dose of phytonutrients each day.







Recommendation»



References»

  • APHA"

  • Nutrition 500
  • Monday, July 13, 2009

    Signs and Symptoms of Autism

    at 9:31 AM 0 comments
    Autism is a pervasive developmental disorder (PDD), a group of illnesses that involves delays in the development of many basic skills, most notably the ability to socialize or form relationships with others as well as the ability to communicate and to use imagination (including fantasy play).Children with autism and related disorders often are confused in their thinking and generally have problems understanding the world around them.In addition to problems with social interaction, imagination, and communication, children with autism also have a limited range of interests. Many children with autism (nearly 75%) also have mental retardation. In many cases, children with autism are unable to emotionally bond with their parents or other family members.
    The forms of autism are thought to overlap considerably. But the fact that there is wide variation in symptoms among children with autism led to the concept of autism spectrum disorder.
    Autism seems to be on the rise, and autism spectrum disorders affect between two and six children out of every 1,000 in the U.S.That's because detection leads to treatment.

    Symptoms typically appear before a child is 3 years old and last throughout life. Children with autism can display a wide range of symptoms, which can vary in severity from mild to disabling. General symptoms that may be present to some degree in a child with autism include:

    Difficulty with verbal communication, including problems using and understanding language.
    Inability to participate in a conversation, even when the child has the ability to speak.
    Difficulty with non-verbal communication, such as gestures and facial expressions.
    Difficulty with social interaction, including relating to people and to his or her surroundings.
    Inability to make friends and preferring to play alone.
    Unusual ways of playing with toys and other objects, such as only lining them up a certain way.

    Lack of imagination.
    Difficulty adjusting to changes in routine or familiar surroundings, or an unreasonable insistence on following routines in detail.
    Repetitive body movements, or patterns of behavior, such as hand flapping, spinning and head banging.

    Preoccupation with unusual objects or parts of objects.
    People with a form of autism, called savantism, have exceptional skills in specific areas such as music, art, and numbers. People with savantism are able to perform these skills without lessons or practice.

    Babies develop at their own pace, some more quickly than others. However, you should consider an evaluation for autism if any of the following apply:
    Your child does not babble or coo by 12 months of age.

    Your child does not gesture, such as point or wave, by 12 months of age.
    Your child does not say single words by 16 months.
    Your child does not say two-word phrases on his or her own (rather than just repeating what someone else says) by 24 months.
    Your child has lost any language or social skills (at any age).


    What Causes The exact cause of autismis not known, but research has pointed to several possible factors, including genetics (heredity), certain types of infections, and problems occurring at birth.Recent studies strongly suggest that some people have a genetic predisposition to autism, meaning that a susceptibility to develop the condition may be passed on from parents to children. Researchers are looking for clues about which genes contribute to this increased vulnerability. In some children, environmental factors may also play a role. Studies of people with autism have found abnormalities in several regions of the brain, which suggest that autism results from a disruption of early brain development while still in utero.

    Other theories suggest:
    The body's immune system may inappropriately produce antibodies that attack the brains of children causing autism.
    Abnormalities in brain structures cause autistic behavior.
    Children with autism have abnormal timing of the growth of their brains. Early in childhood, the brains of autistic children grow faster and larger than those of normal children. Later, when normal children's brains get bigger and better organized, autistic kids' brains grow more slowly.Treatment for autism may include a combination of the following:
    Special education:Education is structured to meet the child's unique educational needs.
    Behavior modification:This includes strategies for supporting positive behavior and decreasing problem behavior by the child.
    Speech, physical, or occupational therapy:These therapies are designed to increase the child's functional abilities.

    Medication:There are no medications currently approved to treat autism, but medications may be used to treat specific symptoms, such as anxiety(nervousness), hyperactivity, and behavior that may result in injury. A recent study found that a drug often used to treat schizophrenia in adults, called Risperdal, might benefit children with autism.

    In Conclusion;It's very important that all children see a pediatrician regularly so that any signs of autism can be detected early in order to help to maximize risk of speaking and Learning Disability.

    Recommdation »

    Reference »

  • Autism Society Of America
  • National Institute of Mental Health
  • JAMA
  • Tuesday, July 7, 2009

    How to improve Health with meditation and exercises.

    at 2:01 PM 0 comments
    Meditation is a technique millions of people use to help focus and calm the mind.The techniques used are designed to help a person gain insight and to manage life's processes,which may include physiological, mental or emotional issues.
    The American Heart Association recommends that heart patients spend 15-20 minutes daily on quiet reflection, deep breathing and visualization of a peaceful scene.The National Institutes of Health also recommends reducing risk factors for heart disease by trying stress management techniques such as meditation or yoga.Meditation exercises have been shown to be beneficial for people with various other conditions,such as chronic pain,irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

    Workaholics or for people with busy lifestyles, meditation exercises help to reduce stress and re-focus themselves in the midst of a tight schedule,concerns and worries.Meditation exercises are better done with relaxation exercises or a breathing exercises.


    There are numerous basic meditation exercises that people can do to lower stress levels and improve health.A more structured form of meditation called transcendental meditation-which involves sitting and repeating a word or a phrase called a mantra -has also shown heart health benefits.People interested in learning this form of meditation are encouraged to find a class,instruction book or videotape on the subject.It's important that patients consult their physician(s) before starting a meditation program.A certified physician will be able to suggest ways in which meditation can be used in conjunction with standard treatment methods.A meditation exercise can be helpful in starting the day in a healthy, strong, enthusiastic frame of mind. The steps for this exercise are as follows-Close your eyes,take a few deep breaths in through the nose and out through the mouth.With each breath,imagine the body getting stronger and healthier,until it is radiating with energy.Imagine speaking in a deep,clear and powerful voice while stating the intentions for the day despite any obstacles.Then take a moment to feel the effect of those words,reflect on them and then act on it.And you had be surprised at the way you stress level reduces.

    Video Presentation by Christopher Lee May.

    Recommendation »

    References»

  • American Heart Association
  • National Institute of Health
  • Wednesday, July 1, 2009

    Signs and Symptoms of Insomnia

    at 6:40 AM 0 comments
    Insomnia is defined as difficulty initiating or maintaining sleep, or both, despite adequate opportunity and time to sleep, leading to impaired daytime functioning. Insomnia may be due to poor quality or quantity of sleep.

    Insomnia is very common and occurs in 30% to 50% of the general population. Approximately 10% of the population may suffer from chronic (long-standing) insomnia.

    Insomnia affects people of all ages including children, although it is more common in adults and its frequency increases with age. In general, women are affected more frequently than men.

    Insomnia may be divided into three classes based on the duration of symptoms.

      ♦Insomnia lasting one week or less may be termed transient insomnia;

      ♦short-term insomnia lasts more than one week but resolves in less than three weeks; and

      ♦long-term or chronic insomnia lasts more than three weeks.


    Insomnia can also be classified based on the underlying reasons for insomnia such as sleep hygiene, medical conditions, sleep disorders, stress factors, and so on.

    It is important to make a distinction between insomnia and other similar terminology; short duration sleep and sleep deprivation.

      ♦Short duration sleep may be normal in some individuals who may require less time for sleep without feeling daytime impairment, the central symptom in the definition of insomnia.

      ♦In insomnia, adequate time and opportunity for sleep is available,whereas in sleep deprivation, lack of sleep is due to lack of opportunity or time to sleep because of voluntary or intentional avoidance of sleep.


    What causes insomnia?

    Insomnia may have many causes and, as described earlier, it can be classified based upon the underlying cause.

    Situational and stress factors leading to insomnia may include:

      ♦jet lag,

      ♦physical discomfort (hot, cold, lighting, noise, unfamiliar surroundings),

      ♦working different shifts,

      ♦stressful life situations (divorce or separation, death of a loved one, losing a job, preparing for an examination),

      ♦illicit drug use,

      ♦cigarette smoking,

      ♦caffeine intake prior to going to bed,

      ♦alcohol intoxication or withdrawal, or

      ♦certain medications.


    Most of these factors may be short-term and transient, and therefore insomnia may resolve when the underlying factor is removed or corrected.

    Sleep hygiene

    Sleep hygiene can play an important role in insomnia. Poor sleep hygiene includes physical factors such as:

      ♦using the bedroom for things other than sleeping,
      ♦eating or exercising prior to sleep,

      ♦going to bed hungry,

      ♦sleeping in a room with too much noise or lighting, or

      ♦doing work in bed.


    Medical and psychiatric conditions

    Medical and psychiatric conditions may also contribute to insomnia.

    Some of these common medical conditions may include:

      ♦breathing problems from chronic heart or lung disease (asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD),

      ♦congestive heart failure,

      ♦obstructive sleep apnea),

      ♦obesity,

      acid reflux

      hyperthyroidism,

      ♦urinary problems (frequent urination, urinary incontinence),

      ♦chronic pain,

      fibromyalgia,

      ♦Parkinson's disease, or

      ♦dementia.


    Common psychiatric problems can be responsible for insomnia including:

      ♦depression,

      ♦psychosis,

      ♦mania,

      ♦anxiety, or

      ♦post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).


    Some common physiologic conditions can lead to insomnia such as:

      ♦menopause,

      ♦menstrual cycle,

      ♦pregnancy,

      ♦fever, or

      ♦pain.


    Other causes of insomnia may be related to sleep disorders including:

      ♦sleep walking,

      ♦sleep apnea,

      ♦restless leg syndrome (creeping sensations in the leg during sleep, relieved by leg movement),

      ♦periodic limb movement disorder (involuntary repeated leg movement during sleep), or

      ♦circadian sleep disturbance (unusual sleep time due to disturbed biological clock).


    Besides the conditions listed previously, there are other types of insomnia that are not necessarily linked to an underlying condition. Some of the common types of insomnia are listed in this section.

    Psychophysiological insomnia

    Psychophysiological insomnia or primary insomnia is a type of insomnia in which learned behaviors prevent sleep. Individuals with this condition are unable to relax their minds (racing thoughts) and have an increased mental function when they try to fall sleep. This may become a long-term issue, and going to bed becomes associated with an increased level of anxiety and mental arousal, leading to chronic insomnia. This condition may be present in about 15% of people who undergo formal sleep studies for evaluation of chronic insomnia.

    Idiopathic insomnia

    Idiopathic insomnia (without an obvious cause) (childhood onset insomnia or life-long insomnia) is a less common condition (1% of young adults or adolescents) that starts in childhood and may continue into adulthood. These individuals have difficulty initiating and maintaining sleep and have chronic daytime fatigue. Other more common conditions need to be evaluated and ruled out before this diagnosis is made. This condition may run in families.

    Paradoxical insomnia

    Paradoxical insomnia is also called subjective insomnia or sleep state misconception. In this condition, individuals may report and complain of insomnia;, however, they would have a normal pattern of sleep if they were to have a formal overnight sleep study done.

    What are the risk factors for insomnia?

    There are no specific risk factors for insomnia because of the variety of underlying causes that may lead to insomnia. The medical and psychiatric conditions listed earlier may be considered risk factors for insomnia if untreated or difficult to treat. Some of the emotional and environmental situations that were also mentioned above may act as risk factor for insomnia.

    Impairment of daytime functioning is the defining and the most common symptom of insomnia.

    Other common symptoms include:

      daytime fatigue,

      ♦daytime sleepiness,

      ♦mood changes,

      ♦poor attention and concentration,

      ♦lack of energy,

      ♦anxiety,

      ♦poor social function,

      ♦headaches, and

      ♦increased errors and mistakes.


    When should I call the doctor about insomnia?

    In general, insomnia related to transient situational factors resolves spontaneously when the provoking factor is removed or corrected. However, medical evaluation by a doctor may be necessary if the insomnia persists or it is thought to be related to a medical or a psychiatric condition.

    There are also specialized doctors who evaluate and treat insomnia and other sleep disorders. Sleep apnea may be evaluated and treated by pulmonologists (lung doctors) who have specialized in sleep disorders. Other doctors who evaluate and treat sleep disorders are neurologists with a specialty in sleep disorders.

    How is insomnia diagnosed?

    Evaluation and diagnosis of insomnia may start with a thorough medical and psychiatric patient history taken by the physician. As mentioned above, many medical and psychiatric conditions can be responsible for insomnia.

    A general physical examination to assess for any abnormal findings is also important, including assessment of mental status and neurological function; heart, lung and abdominal exam; ear, nose and throat exam; and measurement of the neck circumference and waist size. Assessment of routine medications and use of any illegal drugs, alcohol, tobacco, or caffeine is also an important part of the medical history. Any laboratory or blood work pertinent to these conditions can also be a part of the assessment.

    The patient's family members and bed partners also need to be interviewed to ask about the patient's sleep patterns, snoring, or movements during sleep.

    Specific questions regarding sleep habits and patterns are also a vital part of the assessment. A sleep history focuses on:

      ♦duration of sleep,

      ♦time of sleep,

      ♦time to fall sleep,

      ♦number and duration of awakenings,

      ♦time of final awakening in the morning, and

      ♦time and length of any daytime naps.


    Sleep logs or diaries may be used for this purpose to record these parameters on a daily basis for more accurate assessment of sleep patterns.

    Sleep history also typically includes questions about possible symptoms associated with insomnia. The physician may ask about daytime functioning, fatigue, concentration and attention problems, naps, and other common symptoms of insomnia.

    Other diagnostic tests may be done as part of the evaluation for insomnia, although they may not be necessary in all patients with insomnia.

    Polysomnography is a test that is done in sleep centers if conditions such as sleep apnea are suspected. In this test, the person will be required to spend a full night at the sleep center while being monitored for heart rate, brain waves, respirations, movements, oxygen levels, and other parameters while they are sleeping. The data is then analyzed by a specially trained physician to diagnose or rule out sleep apnea.

    Actigraphy is another more objective test that may be performed in certain situations but is not routinely a part of the evaluation for insomnia. An actigraph is a motion detector that senses the person's movements during sleep and wakefulness. It is worn similar to a wrist watch for days to weeks, and the movement data are recorded and analyzed to determine sleep patterns and movements. This test may be useful in cases of primary insomnia disorder, circadian rhythm disorder, or sleep state misconception.

    How is insomnia treated?

    The treatment of insomnia depends largely on the cause of the problem. In cases where an obvious situational factor is responsible for the insomnia, correcting or removing the cause generally cures the insomnia. For example, if insomnia is related to a transient stressful situation, such as jet lag or an upcoming examination, then insomnia will be cured when the situation resolves.

    Generally speaking, the treatment of insomnia can be divided into non-medical or behavioral approaches and medical therapy. Both approaches are necessary to successfully treat insomnia, and combinations of these approaches may be more effective than either approach alone.

    When insomnia is related to a known medical or psychiatric condition, then appropriate treatment of that condition is in the forefront of therapy for insomnia in addition to the specific therapy for insomnia itself. Without adequately addressing the underlying cause, insomnia will likely go on despite taking aggressive measures to treat it with both medical and non-medical therapies.

    What are non-medical treatments for insomnia?

    There are several recommended techniques used in treating people with insomnia. These are non-medical strategies and are generally advised to be practiced at home in combination with other remedies for insomnia, such as medical treatments for insomnia and treatment for any underlying medical or psychiatric disorders.

    Some of the most important of these behavioral techniques are sleep hygiene, stimulus control, relaxation techniques, and sleep restriction.

    What is sleep hygiene?

    Sleep hygiene is one of the components of non-medical treatments for insomnia and includes simple steps that may improve initiation and maintenance of sleep. Sleep hygiene consists of the following strategies:

      ♦Sleep as much as possible to feel rested, then get out of bed (do not over-sleep).

      ♦Maintain a regular sleep schedule.

      ♦Do not force yourself to sleep.

      ♦Do not drink caffeinated beverages in the afternoon or evening.

      ♦Do not drink alcohol prior to going to bed.

      ♦Do not smoke, especially in the evening.

      ♦Adjust the bedroom environment to induce sleep.

      ♦Do not go to bed hungry.

      ♦Resolve stress and anxiety before going to bed.

      ♦Exercise regularly,but not 4-5 hours prior to bed time.


    How can stimulus control help with insomnia?

    Stimulus control refers to techniques used to help with initiating sleep. These techniques are used to induce an environment in the bedroom that promotes sleep. Some simple steps include:

      ♦Use the bed only for having sex and sleeping, not working, reading, watching TV, eating, or other mentally stimulating activities.

      ♦Go to bed only when you feel ready to sleep.

      ♦Turn off the lights and all the noise in and around the bedroom.

      ♦Get up at the same time every morning to avoid over-sleeping.

      ♦If you do not fall asleep longer than 20 minutes after going to bed, get up and try some relaxation techniques until you are ready to sleep again.


    Relaxation techniques, which are also a part of non-medical therapy for insomnia, involve sitting or lying comfortably and relaxing muscles of the body in one area at time. This may be combined with deep, relaxed breathing to promote further body relaxation.

    What is the outlook for insomnia?

    Insomnia overall has a favorable outlook. Many cases of insomnia are related to transient situational stresses and are easily reversed when the situation is resolved. In cases of long-standing (chronic) insomnia, any medical or psychiatric cause needs to be assessed and treated. Medical and non-medical home remedies are available for treating insomnia and are generally successful.

    Insomnia At A Glance

      ♦Insomnia is a condition characterized by poor quality or quantity of sleep, despite adequate opportunity to sleep, which could lead to daytime functional impairment.

      ♦Many medical and psychiatric conditions may be responsible for causing insomnia.

      ♦Insomnia may, at times, be unrelated to any underlying condition.

      ♦There are several useful non-medical behavioral techniques available for treating insomnia.

      ♦Medications are widely used to treat insomnia in conjunction with non-medical strategies.

      ♦Sleep specialists are medical doctors who can play an important role in evaluating and treating long-standing (chronic) insomnia.


    Credits»
    Reviewed By Melissa Conrad Stoppler,MD

    Author:Daniel Emojevwe

    References »

    American Insomnia Association



    Recommendations »

     

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