Insomnia, that intruder in the hours of sleep, affects a significant number of people in Spain, making it a challenge that many face on a daily basis. Here are some keys to overcoming it by rigorously following the recommendations of the experts. It is estimated that around 30% of the Spanish population experience some degree of insomnia in their lifetime, underlining the magnitude of the problem. According to the Spanish Society of Neurology, a total of 4 million people in Spain suffer from chronic insomnia. Insomnia affects daily performance and causes cognitive and memory deficits as well as anxiety and depression problems, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, among others. It is estimated that if you don’t sleep well, you spend 25% more energy to perform the same task. Day by day, fatigue, irritability, lack of concentration and digestive problems accumulate. TYPES OF INSOMNIA: Experts classify insomnia into two main categories: **Time: Experts classify insomnia as acute (short-term) or chronic (long-term). The chronic form is known as insomnia disorder. **Cause: Primary insomnia means that it occurs on its own. Secondary insomnia means that it is a symptom of another condition or circumstance. Habits Harmful to Rest: Our modern life, marked by stress and constant demands, often contributes to insomnia. Excessive exposure to sleep screens, consumption of caffeine or heavy meals close to sleep and lack of a regular routine (going to bed and waking up at the same time) are common factors that can disturb our rest. A common habit among people suffering from insomnia is watching the clock, which causes more frustration and stress, so we recommend that you avoid it. Toxic Factors in the Home: Inside our homes, various toxic elements can interfere with the quality of sleep. Air pollutants, such as formaldehyde and volatile organic compounds present in some products, can negatively affect air quality in the bedroom. VOCs (volatile organic compounds) can now be found in almost all common household products; from carpets to microwaves, paints, sofas… even mattresses, according to the EPA (US Environmental Protection Agency). Formaldehyde is found in many products used daily in the household, e.g. antiseptics, medicines, cosmetics, dishwashing liquids, fabric softeners, shoe care products, carpet cleaners, furniture polishes… You can start using eco-friendly detergents to wash your bed linen, non-toxic cleaning products and as far as possible opt for non-toxic mattresses. In this other article you will find good recommendations, such as mattresses made of natural latex or wool combined with organic cotton. Using natural materials and fibres in our home, and especially in the bedroom at bedtime (sheets, pyjamas, blankets, duvets, pillows, mattresses…) will prevent us from being exposed to countless toxic substances that we breathe in while we sleep. Opt for certified chemical-free wool, cotton and linen for your bed linen. Foods that Impact on Rest: Diet also plays a crucial role. Foods rich in saturated fats and sugars can cause slow digestion, interfering with the process of getting a good night’s rest. Caffeine and nicotine, present in many everyday products, act as stimulants that make it difficult to fall asleep. Serotonin-promoting foods include bananas, almonds, white tahini, whole grains, dates and cassava. Natural Habits and Remedies to Improve Sleep: **Incorporating relaxing practices before bedtime, such as meditation or reading, can help calm the mind. Herbal teas, such as chamomile or valerian, have been shown to have relaxing properties. On our Spotify profile you will find lists of relaxing, sleep-inducing music that you can listen to while meditating or reading a good book. **Establish a regular sleep routine (going to bed and getting up at the same time) following our circadian rhythm. **Maintaining a comfortable temperature in bed (e.g. by using merino wool duvets, because they are thermo-regulating) and limiting exposure to screens by opting for soft, warm lights before bedtime are simple but effective measures. **Eating dinner 2 hours before bedtime, opting for light foods that promote the production of serotonin will help you improve your insomnia. **Be careful not to put the heating in the bedroom, as it dries out the atmosphere too much, leading to an increase in static electricity and respiratory problems. Sleeping with wool is the guarantee of sleeping at the perfect temperature, as well as being an antistatic fibre. **Aromatherapy is also a great ally; go for mandarin, lavender and Roman chamomile essential oil for your diffuser. Here you will find more oils to improve your rest. **The therapy that has proven most effective for the treatment of insomnia is cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT). It can resolve approximately 70% of insomnia. Long Term Health Consequences: Did you know that chronic insomnia not only affects daily performance, but can also have serious long-term health consequences. It has been linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and mental disorders such as depression and anxiety. Measures to Improve the Bedroom: Optimising the sleep environment is crucial. Ensuring adequate darkness, maintaining a comfortable temperature and keeping electronic devices away from the bedroom are essential steps. In addition, investing in quality mattresses, pillows and bedding can make a difference to the quality of sleep. In conclusion, tackling insomnia involves a holistic approach ranging from daily habits to creating an environment conducive to sleep. Awareness of these factors and the implementation of positive changes can pave the way for restful nights and a significant improvement in quality of life. Fuente: businessinsider.com, myessentia.com, cuerpomente.com, epa.gov, atsdr.cdc.gov.