How to Overcome Sleep Disorders – Using Ayurvedic Approach March 20, 2019 – Posted in: Lifestyle – Tags: Ayurveda, ayurvedic lifestyle, sleep
Do you suffer from irregular sleep? Perhaps you’ve difficulty to fall asleep. Maybe you wake up in the middle of the night, wanting desperately to keep sleeping, but are unable to. Or is your tendency to spend more time sleeping, which can be equally problematic? The truth is that imbalances in our sleep patterns can be very disturbing and the task of getting back on track can feel incredibly daunting. But with the right set of tools, it is possible to find and return to balance. Being the timeless art of living that it is, Ayurveda offers a refreshingly simple and practical approach to balancing sleep cycles.
Ayurveda recommends that everyone keep a regular bedtime and morning routine. Bedtime should be at the same time each night, preferably at 10:00 P.M. The hours before bed should be spent with quiet activity, Yoga, and meditation. You should awaken at dawn, between 6:00 and 8:00 A.M., and proceed with your daily rituals.
From an Ayurvedic perspective, the doshas – Vata, Pitta and Kapha predominate at different times of life, different seasons but also different times of the day- Kapha is the most prevalent dosha from 6 AM-10 AM in the morning and 6 PM-10 PM at night. Pitta prevails from 10 AM – 2 PM and 10 PM-2 AM. Vata is King from 2 PM – 6 PM and also 2 AM- 6 AM.
In Ayurveda, sleep disorders are classified according to dosha. There are Vata-type, Pitta-type, and Kapha-type sleep disturbances—each with a distinct character, and a corresponding line of treatment. You don’t need to be a Vata to have a Vata-type sleep disorder. Similarly, you are maybe a Pitta, but having a Kapha-type sleep disorder.
Of course, the doshas can have a distinctive influence on your sleep preferences and habits. As with many things in Ayurveda, one’s constitution and current state of balance will influence the types of sleep imbalances that are most likely to crop up. A Vata-predominant individual is more likely to experience Vata-type sleep disorders; Pitta-types will tend toward Pitta sleep complaints, and Kapha-types toward Kapha sleep issues. But any imbalances overlaying the constitution will also influence the situation. If you do not know your constitution or your current state of balance, click here to find out by taking a quiz.
The following sections will help you understand how each of the three doshas shapes your experience of sleep. Look for which one you identify with—both in terms of your sleep habits and preferences, as well as the types of imbalances that tend to influence your sleep patterns. We also offer some Ayurvedic tips to help you to overcome your sleep disorders, if any.
Vata-Type Sleep and Sleep Imbalances
Vata mind/body types often have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. Their minds are active, imaginative, and restless and may be hard to quiet down at night. Vata mind/body types need a lot of sleep or they become groggy and ineffective. *1
Vata-type sleep tends to be irregular and light, but can be profoundly deep when one is exhausted. Vata-types typically crave a soft bed to cushion their protruding bones, and tend to sleep fewer hours than other types. Interestingly, Vata is better supported with more sleep rather than less. Vata is also behind the tendencies to grind the teeth, sleep walk, or talk in one’s sleep. Vata-type dreams tend to be spacious and airy and often focus on movement, adventure, or being chased; Vata-types dream a lot, but they frequently have trouble recalling their dreams. While Vata can cause difficulty falling asleep, the classic Vata-type sleep imbalance is to wake up during the night but unable to return to sleep. This is particularly common during Vata time, from about 2–6 a.m.*2
How to Overcome a Vata Sleep Imbalance – Before Bed: *3
1. Avoid too much stimulation at night.
2. Massage Vata Oil onto your scalp, face, hands and soles of feet. This therapeutic oil is designed to pacify Vata dosha.
4. Let go of body tension. It helps to have the attitude of total surrender when going to bed.
5. Let go of your problems. Bedtime is not the time to try to solve your problems.
Pitta-Type Sleep and Sleep Imbalances
Pitta-types generally sleep well, though somewhat lightly. They tend to prefer a firm bed and few covers, due to Pitta’s tendency to overheat. Pittas crave a moderate amount of sleep—somewhere between Vata and Kapha, which is generally supportive of their physiological needs. However, pitta-types can easily forego sleep when they are preoccupied with a project or are up against a deadline. Pitta sleep is often disturbed by fiery, vivid, and active dreams, but Pitta-types typically return to sleep easily if they are awakened. Difficulty falling asleep is the classic Pitta-type sleep disorder because Pitta is elevated in the mind and in the atmosphere from about 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. This can activate the mind, stimulate ambition, and can completely overwhelm any desire to sleep. As a result, many Pitta-types are night owls and can be incredibly productive at night. *2
How to Overcome a Pitta Sleep Imbalance – Before Bed: *3
1. Keep your bedroom cool while sleeping. Research shows that people sleep deeper in a slightly cool environment. If the bedroom is too hot and stuffy, it increases the likelihood of night awakening.
2. Massage cooling Pitta Oil onto your scalp, face, hands and soles of feet. This therapeutic oil is designed to pacify Pitta dosha.
3. Drink Pitta Tea (containing a delicious combination of fragrant Rose Petals and refreshing spices) to help cool down your mind, body and emotions. *1 In the day, take Pitta Supplement.
Kapha-Type Sleep and Sleep Imbalances
Kapha-types are heavy sleepers, can generally sleep soundly anywhere, and are not easily disturbed or awakened. They adore being in bed and like to sleep more hours than any other type—preferably on a soft mattress, under an abundance of comforting, fluffy covers. Interestingly, Kapha-types actually need less sleep than Vata- and Pitta-types. Kapha dreams tend to be calm, smooth, watery, and emotional. When out of balance, Kapha tends to cause excessive sleep, a feeling of heaviness, sluggishness, and difficulty waking up. Kapha is elevated in the mind and in the atmosphere from about 6–10 a.m./p.m., which can increase Kapha’s natural heaviness and sluggishness, making it easy for Kapha-types to sleep for many extra hours. *2
How to Overcome a Kapha Sleep Imbalance – During the Day : *3
1. Rise before 6:00 a.m. Sleeping past dawn, into the Kapha time of the morning (6:00-10:00 a.m.) causes ama (toxins) to accumulate in the shrotas and creates a dull, tired feeling when you awaken.
2. Gradually decrease coffee consumption. Instead, drink Kapha Tea or green tea to reinforce the body’s efforts to remove ama, and invigorate the whole system.
3. Eat a Kapha-pacifying diet. This includes avoiding desserts, especially heavy, cold sweets such as ice cream. Take Kapha Supplement.
4. Follow Kapha-pacifying lifestyle tips. Vigorous exercise is essential for balancing Kapha. The best time to exercise is during the Kapha time of the morning (6:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.).
5. Breathe deeply and easily while exercising and throughout the day. 6. Massage Kapha Oil onto your scalp, face, hands and soles of feet. This therapeutic oil is designed to pacify Kapha dosha.
Note *1 : http://www.whatsyourdosha.com/
Note *2 : https://www.banyanbotanicals.com/info/ayurvedic-living/living-ayurveda/health-guides/an-ayurvedic-guide-to-balanced-sleep/
Note *3 : https://www.mapi.com/ayurvedic-knowledge/sleep/balance-your-body-with-ayurved-to-sleep-better.htm