At this Perth naturopathic clinic we offer treatment for all the major sleep disorders: insomnia, sleep apnoea, snoring, restless leg syndrome (also known as restless legs syndrome or RLS), jet lag and shift-work sleeping difficulties. Problems with dreams, such as nightmares and night terrors in all age groups are also resolved by homeopathy.
As sleep disorders are a symptom of many different causes and imbalances in the whole person, mentally, emotionally and physically, it is important that we target the real cause and fix the problem for good, not just provide a band aid. Homeopathic medicine helps by balancing the individual on all levels; but we may also provide remedies that temporarily help insomnia in the short term, when individually prescribed to your pattern. To assist this, naturopathy as applied by us aims to look at dietary and lifestyle factors that could be contributing to sleeping difficulties.
It is important to resolve insomnia because poor sleep can result in a host of problems: poor immunity, hypertension, obesity and increase in body mass index, increased risk of heart problems diabetes, depression and substance abuse, poor attention, memory and concentration and an increased risk of accidents, especially while driving.
Insomnia may be transient or short term, often in response to a period of stress. In this case constitutional homeopathy and remedies that help symptomatically at bedtime work very effectively. They do not have the side effects of drugs and improve sleep quality. Nor do they have the milder side effects that herbal medicines for sleeping often have. In fact we find the same herbal remedies when used in homeopathic potency work more effectively, with no unwelcome effects, and our knowledge and experience allows us to prescribe them very accurately to your exact needs. Our homeopathic understanding helps us prescribe them more precisely to your individual case.
Intermittent insomnia is a little more serious. This occurs when the periods of sleep disorder come closer together and occur for longer periods. It is more important for us to look at the underlying mental and emotional patterns of imbalance that may be contributed to by anxiety and depression. Constitutional homeopathy that covers the full spectrum of the emotional symptoms, as well as any physical problems, can fix the problem. Naturopathic dietary and lifestyle advice will be applied where necessary: this may include exercise and meditation techniques.
Once sleep problems become permanent it is known as chronic insomnia.
Once again, the constitutional homeopathic remedy, in conjunction with naturopathic advice, helps us heal the underlying causes effectively. The results are usually apparent from the first few nights.
Insomnia may also be named for the different patterns that occur. Initial insomnia describes where the person has difficulty falling asleep, but then sleeps through. This is the most common kind. With middle insomnia, the person falls asleep then wakes through the night, often at specific times. Late insomnia describes the situation where the person wakes early, usually a couple of hours before the optimum time.
Homeopathy has remedies that address each situation, even for waking at specific times through the night. But as always, it is important to use constitutional medicines that treat the underlying problem and not just the symptoms; in fact, mostly, to achieve any result, that is what we have to do.
Dreams have an important function in relation to our emotional health and well-being. People with sleep difficulties often report an absence of dreams, or on the other hand profuse, exhausting or fearful dreams that interfere with their quality of sleep. This may be to the extent of night terrors, especially in children. With constitutional remedies that work on the emotional level, patients who don’t dream usually report an immediate return of normal dreams.
Here we often find that certain mineral remedies may be indicated by their individual symptoms. We can also promptly and effectively relieve fearful and exhausting dreams with specific homeopathic remedies that treat the underlying emotional cause.
Interference with the normal pattern of sleep and waking can have serious consequences. Both jet lag and the effects of shift work have similar results: difficulty in re-establishing a normal sleep pattern, tiredness, irritability, disorientation and confusion. There are very effective homeopathic remedies that help relieve these symptoms, when prescribed to the individual case.
However, only a small proportion of the population can do shift work for any period of time without long term health effects. In this case, with homeopathy and naturopathic advice we can at least help support the body and minimise the consequences, even if we can’t fix the problem.
Constitutional homeopathic treatment is often effective in both snoring and sleep apnoea, providing the individual is not too overweight, which is the main contributing factor. With overweight individuals we will apply naturopathic dietary and lifestyle measures to assist and also commence homeopathy treatment. Often we see patients of relatively normal weight who have these problems, and with these people we usually see a rapid improvement in symptoms.
Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) is a relatively common disorder affecting five to ten percent of the population. In our experience it responds well and rapidly to homeopathy and naturopathic treatment. Symptoms are aching and an irresistible desire to move the legs when at rest. It commonly occurs in bed at night and continues all night long, interfering with sleep. In turn, this leads to all the consequences of insufficient sleep. Sufferers are often chronically depressed. Some researchers believe it is related to a deficiency in dopamine, but we have found that in some patients it is definitely aggravated by sensitivity to certain foods.
In any case, we find the way to treat Restless Leg Syndrome is with constitutional homeopathic treatment. Often these are similar remedies we find appropriate in ADHD or hyperactivity, and many researchers believe there is a connection.