We were tired enough when we went to bed, but the minute the light went out, our eyes were stuck open. Staring, thinking, pondering, and worrying. It makes for a long night of listening to sleep sounds next to you, and an even longer day at work tomorrow. Worse yet, age seems to make the problem worse. A night of insomnia every few months becomes a night a month. Then a few nights a month. Some folks experience insomnia for a little while, while other unfortunate souls battle insomnia for 2-3 months or more. We try every remedy we can think to try, and every over-the-counter medicine advertised by CVS on late-night television. Finally, we are ready to try something else. This is where pressure points can come in.
What pressure points put us to sleep?
Pressure points, otherwise known as acupressure, may provide relief for occasional insomnia. Acupressure involves the use of physical touch to stimulate places on the body corresponding to mental and physical health. A professional acupuncturist can do it. But you can also find your own pressure points. Here are some ideas for how to activate your body for a better night of sleep.
First, find the crease on the outside of your left wrist, a couple of inches below your pinkie finger.
- Feel the hollow space, and apply mild pressure in a circular movement.
- Continue for 2-3 minutes.
Repeat on the right wrist. This should help to quiet your mind. Next, try the area known as the three yin intersection., located on the inside of your leg, above the ankle.
- Start at the highest point of the ankle.
- Count 1-2-3-4 finger-widths up your leg.
- Apply firm (even hard) pressure, massaging with circular motions for 4-5 seconds.
*Note* Do NOT try this if you are expecting, as it is associated as a natural way of inducing labor.
How Can I Go to Sleep Instantly?
Almost no one goes to sleep instantly. Twenty minutes is considered normal. But, if you find yourself exceeding that amount of time, try the Bubbling Spring. Its a pressure point located on the sole of your foot. Lie on your back with your knees bent so you can reach your feet with your hands.
- Take your left foot in your right hand and curl your toes.
- Feel for the depression on the sole.
- Apply firm, but not hard, pressure. Massage this point for 3-5 minutes using a circular motion.
How Can I Make Myself Sleep Deeply?
If you can go to sleep within that twenty-minute mark, but have trouble with sleeping as deeply as you would like, consider another kind of acupressure. The inner frontgate point is on your inner forearm between the two tendons.
- Turn your palms facing up.
- Count three fingers down from the wrist crease.
- Apply steady downward pressure, and then massage with a circular motion for 4-5 seconds.
Besides helping you sleep more deeply, the inner frontier gate is good for nausea, digestive pain, and headaches.
All Good, But at what point should I call my doctor?
While any or all of these techniques can help you sleep, persistent insomnia that can’t be alleviated with acupressure could require a visit with a medical professional. Make an appointment with your doctor if your lack of sleep is resulting in:
- weakened immune function
- weight gain
- decreased cognitive function
You could have an underlying condition that needs treatment.
What if I sleep fine, but can’t seem to shake the sleepy? Is there a pressure point to wake you up?
While the very act of sleeping prevents you from activating pressure points, there is some help from acupressure for staying alert. Acupressure stimulus points include:
- The top of the head
- The back of the neck and on both sides
- On the top of the hands, between the thumb and forefinger
The routine consists of applying light-to-medium pressure by tapping the fingers, followed by massaging with the forefingers.
Gildshire knows that sleep issues on either end of the spectrum can be detrimental to your well-being if not to your overall health. That’s why pressure points can be so much help. So, here’s to a solid night of sleep tonight and to a better-than-ever tomorrow.