natural cures for insomnia

Welcome to the February 2013 Natural Living Blog Carnival: Addressing Sleep Challenges.

This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Natural Living Blog Carnival hosted by Happy Mothering and The Pistachio Project through the Green Moms Network. This month our members have written posts about how they address sleep challenges in their homes.


Last week I got stressed which meant I didn’t sleep well.

This is not an unusual story for me. I go through phases of it every few months, but it can feel like it’s going to go on for ever once you’re in the midst of it.

The trouble is, I’m a worrier, so my mind goes round and round which further exacerbates the problem.

Although I might not have the definitive answer to insomnia, I have plenty of tried and tested methods to share with you today in the hope that something will help you too.


We all know that a diet high in processed foods, sugar and caffeine can keep us awake but there are herbs that can actually be beneficial when sleep evades us. A cup of warm camomile, catnip or lemon balm tea are gentle enough for the entire family.


Full body or back massages are suitable for the entire family too and a great way to spend some quality time. When Little Miss Green was a baby I used a gentle blend of mandarin, lavender and chamomile essential oils which I rubbed into the soles of her feet if she was restless.


You don’t have to sit as still as a statue in the lotus position to benefit from meditation. Simply lying down and focusing on your breath can still your mind and help you rest. There are meditation cds for children and hypnosis cds available for adults, so have a browse and see what you can find.

Wind down

I work from home running my own business, so the temptation can be to stay up late to ‘get ahead’. Whether you have homework, are studying or are running a business it’s important to create a calming rhythm before bed. Create boundaries around work and leave plenty of time for rest. Try playing a game, having a warm bath or sitting with a good book

Avoid the TV

Even if you’re watching something passive, have you noticed how you or your children can get agitated when watching the screen? All those moving images stimulate the brain so make sure you turn the TV off at least an hour before you go to bed.

Alternative medicine

There are plenty of ways to treat insomnia than using sleeping tablets. Alternative medicine treatments provides us with many safe and effective ideas such as acupressure holding points, reflexology or cognitive hypnotherapy. Ask your friends for recommendations of a good therapist.


As well as a cup of soothing herbal tea, think about changing your eating habits. Don’t eat after 6pm to give your body time to digest your food and don’t eat anything too heavy for your last meal of the day – the adage “breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dine like a pauper” makes a lot of sense to your digestion!

What about you? What safe and effective methods do you use to help treat insomnia?


Visit Happy Mothering and The Pistachio Project to learn more about participating in next month’s Natural Living Blog Carnival!

Please take some time to enjoy the posts our other carnival participants have contributed:



  1. Mauro on February 21, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    Thanks for the tips. Watching certain TV shows before bed can get you agitated making it more difficult for a person to sleep. I will try the meditation technique.

  2. Charise @ I Thought I Knew Mama on February 21, 2013 at 3:48 pm

    This is all great advice! Herbal tea before bed goes a long way for me.

  3. CelloMom on February 21, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    I’m completely with you on limiting TV before bedtime! I can feel my adrenaline levels react to just the sound of it. As for meditation: when I took yoga lessons, they always had a 15 minute meditation period, during which I invariably fell asleep. I can only hope I did it soundlessly… I didn’t know that catnip helps with sleep: should try that!

  4. Tracey @ Dont Mess with Mama on February 21, 2013 at 10:47 pm

    I love to have a warm cup of tea (or two) before bed. Great tips!

  5. Alicia@ eco friendly homemaking on February 22, 2013 at 12:33 am

    This is such a great post full of wonderful information. I know a lot of people deal with this problem and take such awful medications with horrible side effects. The Lord has put such awesome herbs here for us to use with no bad side effects!! I am always so ecucated after reading your posts!!

  6. Brittany @ The Pistachio Project on February 23, 2013 at 6:03 pm

    Love my cup of tea to help relax before bed! Thanks for all these wonderful tips.