If you're having trouble sleeping, natural sleep aids may solve your problems. People have been using herbal sleep remedies for centuries to encourage restful nights. If you're unable to sleep, you have nothing to lose by giving these old remedies a try.

Valerian

Valerian root has been used for centuries by insomniacs in search of a peaceful trip to slumberland. This safe and gentle herb is a popular alternative to medications prescribed by the doctor. The best part about it is, no side effects!

One thing to keep in mind is that it affects people differently. Some people find relief from sleeplessness right away with valerian, while others have to take it for a month or more before it starts working. Don't give up on it too quickly if it doesn't work right away.

Valerian does have a distinctive odor. It smells something like dirty socks, which can make drinking valerian tea a bit of a challenge. But once you get used to the smell, you'll find it helpful for those nights when you're unable to sleep.

Passionflower

This calming herb has a long history as a remedy for insomnia and anxiety. In fact, it's still used today for these problems. A small study of 36 people found that passionflower is as effective as oxazepam, a drug used to treat symptoms of anxiety disorder.

Passionflower is a bit milder in its effects than valerian. The combination of valerian with passionflower produces a great natural sleep aid.

Melatonin

Melatonin is a hormone that's essential for maintaining the body's circadian ryhthm. This 24-hour internal clock tells us when to go to sleep, and when to wake up. If the circadian rhythm gets messed up, it can be just about impossible to drift off to dreamland easily.

Melatonin is mostly produced at night. Bright lights reduce its production, which is why shift work, too much light at night, and too little light during the day can cause reduced levels.

Kids have high levels of melatonin, which probably explains why they can nap at the drop of a hat. Melatonin levels tend to drop as people age, which is why older folks often suffer more from insomnia than younger ones do.

5-htp (5-Hydroxytryptophan)

We all know what happens after eating a turkey dinner...zzzzzz. Why? Because turkey contains an amino acid called tryptothan. When you eat turkey, your body converts the tryptothan into 5-hydroxytryptophan, and then into serotonin. Serotonin regulates your mood and appetite, as well as causing you to feel like you need a snooze. Not enough serotonin in your system? You may have problems with your sleep cycle.

Having trouble sleeping? Natural sleep aids may be just what you need.

Author's Bio: 

Want to take charge of your own health, but don't know where to begin? Start with a visit to Natural Health And Wellness Tips, where Darlene Norris shares the latest buzz on natural health. Darlene is a mom and grandma who has been using natural remedies for many years to keep her family healthy and happy.

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