Ayurvedic medicine is a more than 3,000 year old medical system. National Institutes of Health explain Ayurveda is based on concepts of universal interconnectedness, the body’s constitution, and life forces that are sometimes compared to the biologic humors of the ancient Greek system. The traditional Indian health care system is still used by the majority of India’s population. There’s a reason. It works.
The first step in using Ayurveda to target problems with sleep is to identify which type of sleep imbalance is plaguing you. Doing so can help you better treat your personal sleep woes.
There are three types of sleep imbalances, Mapi explains:
Vata is the problem of being unable to detach the mind from the events and feelings of the day. In this type of sleep imbalance, it is difficult to fall asleep and when you do fall asleep, you are restless. Those suffering from a Vata sleep disorder are advised to do a body tension exercise to help the body surrender to sleep.
In a Pitta sleep disorder, you fall asleep easily but wake up in the night and cannot fall back to sleep. This disturbance is often caused by emotional trauma. It is recommended those battling Pitta sleep in cold temperatures.
In Kapha sleep imbalance, you sleep deeply for a long time but still wake up feeling exhausted. For Kapha sleep disorders, waking before 6:00 AM and exercising between 6:00 and 10:00 AM can solve the problem.
In addition to these targeted home remedies, Gaia advises against caffeine after 3:00 PM and recommends drinking a cup of warm milk with 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg before bed. It is also suggested to massage soothing lavender essential oil into the temples and to give yourself a loving foot massage with sesame oil before cozying up under the covers.
Banyan Botanicals makes the point that sleep is effected by your actions throughout the day. Start the day on a good note by giving yourself a nurturing self-massage upon waking. In the below six-minute video, Alicia Diaz demonstrates the best techniques for a warm-oil self-massage that begins at the scalp and ends at the soles of the feet.