Sleep is must for relaxation of the whole body and mind. The whole body systems slow down during the nigh. Sleep is also a time for rejuvenation as the cells of body are being repaired at the time of sleep.
There is a strong relationship of food and sleep. If one eats a lot of fruits, green vegetables light dals and chappatis, the amount of time of sleep automatically reduces. The timing of the food consumed also decides the quality and timing of the sleep. If one eats his dinner between 5 to 7 pm in the evening, the food is easily digested by the time one goes to sleep of 4 hours is even sufficient for the body.
Some people especially in old age get worried and anxious about lack of sleep. Worry and anxiety aggravates the problem further. Many old people easily and readily fall into the trap of tranquilizers and sleep inducing drugs. Though these medicines are helpful in the beginning but later on one becomes addicted to them. Also the side effects of such drugs start creating many imbalances in the various systems of body. Pains and aches due to some or other problem sometimes forces one to resort to such drugs.
Sleep inducing drugs must be restricted to emergencies one must be careful about their addiction. The other means of including sleep naturally should be adopted if one feels tired and listless in the day due to lack of sleep. Doing light walk after dinner tires the body and sleep comes easily. Early dinner is also, helpful and the digestive system slows down and sleep is sound and deep. Washing hands and feet with cold water, sitting on bed and chanting ‘OM’ also helps in inducing sleep. Practicing ‘Brahmari Pranayma’ 10 - 15 times before retiring to bed relaxes the whole system and helps greatly. ‘Shav asana’ (corpse pose) is also very very helpful as one does backward counting one’s attention on one’s own breath.
Even if after adopting all these measures, one finds sleep evading one’s being, one can do ‘nam smaran’ on a rosary (Mala). One can do mental japa of guru mantra, name of his Ishta devta or any other God that one has faith in. the time must be considered best spent thus. As night is quiet, mind also is comparatively at peace because there is no activity going on, no work to be done, no deadline. If one asserts one’s will power for 2-3 days and consciously avoids all unnecessary thoughts cluttering one’s mind, then one starts feeling good and at peace mentally.
It is our mental attitude of positivity that turns even an obstacle or unfavorable situation in our favour. So, I strongly believe that by filling oneself with the positive thought of using lack of sleep as a blessing in disguise and using that time in chanting God’s name will remove all the anxiety and worry gradually.