Insomnia
Natural Remedies

Natural Remedies for Insomnia: A Comprehensive Guide

| Modified on Feb 24, 2024
Castor Oil
Posted by Ve (Dayton, Ohio) on 02/17/2018 3 posts
★★★★★

I developed insomnia after menopause. I tried lots of remedies. One remedy was melatonin which gave me strange dreams and made me groggy during the day. Then Magnesium which also made me groggy during the day. The third remedy I tried was Castor Oil. Since I am a big fan of castor oil I noticed that when I used it for other ailments I would sleep thru the night. So I experimented after reading an article that in the 70's there was a clinic in California that would have great success in curing all sorts of ailments when they gave people full body castor oil packs. I started rubbing castor oil all over my skin and I slept wonderfully thru the night. I don't use a pack at night just rub the oil on every night. Sometimes I cover most of my body and other nights a 1/2 a teaspoon anywhere and it still works! I use an oversized cotton pj with long arms or cotton pajama type leggings if I do my legs.


Castor Oil
Posted by Mama To Many (Tennessee) on 11/21/2016
★★★★★

Has anyone tried a castor oil pack for insomnia? I have seen that some use a drop in the eyes or on the eyelids for sleep.

I find that when I use one overnight I seem to sleep better and longer. I find them cozy and relaxing and that effect seems to last into the next day.

I put castor oil onto a piece of flannel (folded over a couple of times – maybe the end result is 6 inches by 6 inches – not too scientific.) I cover that with some plastic wrap. If I wear a long stretchy camisole under my night clothes, it seems to hold it in place pretty well. (But use old pajamas and sheets anyway, just in case! ) Then I apply a heating pad. I confess I do leave the heating pad on all night. This is not recommended for diabetics, the elderly or children. (Maybe for anyone. A warm rice sock would be an alternative.)

You are supposed to wash off the castor oil with a baking soda rinse in the morning, but I don't actually do that.

Castor oil packs are commonly used to detox the liver. I have heard that the liver detoxes overnight. Maybe the castor oil pack helps this process? Maybe sleep troubles is in part caused by a sluggish liver? Just wild guesses here.

Anyway, castor oil packs do help me to sleep well (even when I am using them over an ovary or my gall bladder.) I would be interested to hear if anyone else experiences this.

~Mama to Many~

Melatonin
Posted by Lisa (Westport, Ct) on 03/28/2018
★★★★★

For months I have been waking up at 4:00 am and unable to get back to sleep, either because I need to use the bathroom or someone moving around in our house or anxiety attacks. In the past, magnesium supplements have done the trick keeping me asleep but lately they have not helped much. Exercise that tires me out definitely helps keep me asleep all night, but on the days I don't exercise hard I wake up. I bought 3 mg melatonin and tried that. Helped the first night, but not after that.

Finally I tried 1 melatonin and 1 magnesium l threonate capsule before bed. That was the winning combination. I am sleeping deeply until the morning and feeling extraordinarily refreshed and energized. Don't want this to become less effective, so I'm only doing it 2-3 nights in a row, then taking a break from the supplements until I feel the need to do it again. Usually another 2-3 days off. Hope this helps someone.

Castor Oil
Posted by Robin (Rural, VA) on 11/03/2008
★★★★★

This is amazing. I have been on a quest for a good nights sleep, which didn't include medications, for several months. I fall asleep in a reasonable amount of time, but wake up several times, sometimes for a few hours at a time. I have tried everything posted on this site, but the Castor Oil works! My boyfriend laughs at me and my crazy remedies. Well he has insomnia too, and I'm sleeping through the night. Does anyone have any ideas about why this works?


Castor Oil
Posted by Parag (Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA) on 10/29/2008
★★★★★

Castor oil is great to get that deep, restful sleep. Apply about a drop of castor oil to your eye lids only. It is okay if it enters your eye. This is the normal, regular castor oil you get at the stores. Initially you will fall to sleep the moment you hit the bed. So make sure you are ready to sleep when you use it. If you plan to sleep only 3 to 4 hours, i.e. not you full normal sleep, do not use castor oil as it will make getting up very difficult indeed! I use it when I have anxieties or when I find it difficult to sleep. I and my wife have been using it for decades now.

Hope it helps you too. Wish you sweet dreams!

Castor Oil
Posted by Mel (Katy, Tx) on 01/16/2010
★★★★★

Castor Oil cured my insomnia and a Pterygium on my left eye. A pterigium is fatty deposit from wind/dust that affects one or both eyes. There is no pain, but it looks gross. I first got this while living in West Texas and was diagnosed by an Ophthalmologist. My doctor told me that it is not serious unless it starts growing towards the pupil and therefore, should be removed because it will affect my eye sight. My pterigium over the years was getting closer and closer to my pupil as the years have gone by. I knew that very soon I would have to have surgery to have it removed. I started the castor oil therapy about 2 weeks ago for my insomnia and just about 2 days ago I was looking in the mirror and look at my eyes and had to do a double take. The pterygium is almost gone! It is very thin and is not noticeable at all. I am so happy! I started using castor oil for insomnia and that was successful and at the same time cured my pterygium. Thank you so much. :D

Calcium
Posted by Clatterbuck (Beltsville, Md) on 08/26/2020
★★★★★

I have no problem getting to sleep, but for the last couple of years I keep waking up after 5 or 6 hours of sleep and then can't get back to sleep. I've tried everything but nothing worked. I think I've discovered the solution to this problem. I always take my calcium supplement at night because it seemed to help me get to sleep. Recently, once again, I was up at 3:00 in the morning and couldn't get back to sleep. As I lay there frustrated with my inability to get a full night's sleep, I thought about how my low dose calcium supplement seems to help me get to sleep so I got up and took another supplement at 3:30 a.m.

I took the pill and started reading my book (with a book light) and after about 15 minutes, I couldn't keep my eyes open. I slept until 7:15 that morning. I now keep my calcium supplements and a glass of water beside my bed. I can't believe something this simple has cured my early morning waking.

Melatonin
Posted by Deirdre (Ct) on 06/24/2020
★★★★★

I have been experimenting with melatonin after reading Art Solbrig's extensive two articles on it in the Coronavirus and Supplements section of EC. I want to report my results as they have been quite amazing. I hope this will be helpful for those with sleep issues, stress, and anxiety.

Starting a few weeks ago, about 30 minutes before bed, I took 10 mg of melatonin with magnesium L threonate. I slept very deeply and woke up the next morning feeling like my brain had finally gotten a chance to recuperate after YEARS of sleeping poorly. I was astounded at the sensation of deep, restorative sleep. You don't realize how badly you've been sleeping until you start sleeping deeply again. It must have been like that for 10 years, at least.

I continued the 10 mg melatonin with magnesium protocol for one week. The first few days, like many report, I was extremely tired during the day. But I didn't fight the sleepiness, I just took a nap or went back to sleep in the morning, figuring I needed the extra deep sleep time. I felt so much calmer and more peaceful as the first week of melatonin and magnesium went on.

After 1 week, the sleepy effects wore off as Art said they would, so I upped it to 20 mg (still with magnesium ) at night. More deep and restorative sleep.

Now on week 3, I am testing 30 mg of melatonin and finding it wonderful. I no longer have the drowsiness issue that people report from melatonin.

Note to Art Solbrigh - thank you so much for writing so extensively on the health benefits of melatonin! Had it not been for all your research and pubmed studies, I probably wouldn't have experimented with it as I didn't like the drowsy feeling it gave when I tried it in the past. Very grateful to you!

Ginger Tea
Posted by Famcoll (Tennessee) on 10/23/2017
★★★★★

I discovered quite accidentally that a strong cup of ginger tea brewed from fresh ginger slices taken one hour before bedtime makes me sleep. After years of using medications, both prescription and over-the-counter, to induce sleep I found that ginger tea, for me, has a soporific effect. Since I couldn't find anything on the web explaining this phenomenon, I looked up information on some Chinese language websites. Only one explained the use of ginger as a sleep agent. Apparently, it works only for people who are "pa leng" or "afraid of cold." This means, if you have the tendency to have cold fingers and toes you may benefit from ginger tea as a sleep agent. Anyway, it works for me.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Anonymous (USA)
★★★★★

Mix two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar with one cup of honey and store this mixture in an air-tight container. Anytime you have trouble drifting off, take two teaspoons of this mixture and you'll drift off in less than a half hour. And you won't be groggy in the morning like over-the-counter sleep aids.


Hot Milk
Posted by Deirdre (Ct) on 08/26/2020
★★★★★

My mother, for her entire lifetime, would make herself a hot cup of milk if she got up in the middle of the night and couldn't get back to sleep. (1 cup of milk contains 300 mg of calcium. ) She also added a touch of honey. She said it never failed to knock her out after 15 minutes. She also used to give this to us as children about 30 minutes before bedtime. I haven't done it in a long time, but perhaps I shall again. Great night-time ritual memory.


Nettle Tea
Posted by Mama To Many (Tennessee) on 07/18/2016
★★★★★

Well, a friend and I have stumbled upon something for insomnia. Nettle tea! I gave my friend some dry nettle (with some peppermint for flavor) for a health issue. (I don't recall which health issue, but it wasn't insomnia.) She has had trouble sleeping for decades. Since childhood even. She started making and consuming a very strong nettle infusion. After several days she realized she was sleeping 7 hours a night and not waking up and having trouble getting back to sleep. The only thing she was doing differently was taking nettle.

I do not know why nettle is helping her. I have guesses. Nettle is a highly nutritive herb. Perhaps a simple undetected vitamin or mineral deficiency was causing the sleeping trouble. Nettle is a blood purifier. Perhaps the nettle is dealing with something in her system that was causing trouble sleeping. I can't explain it, but I can say that nettle is generally very safe. For someone who has tried "everything" for insomnia, strong nettle tea might just be the solution.

To make a strong nettle infusion:

Put 4 tablespoons of tea leaves (3 T. nettle, 1 T. peppermint) in a quart jar.

Pour very hot water over the leaves.

Cover with a lid.

Steep overnight.

Strain in the morning and drink throughout the day. Keep in the refrigerator. Discard 24 hours after you begin the brew.

This tea is also great for allergies and asthma and general poor health.

~Mama to Many~

Castor Oil
Posted by Mark (Phoenix, Az) on 12/27/2009
★★★★★

A drop of Castor Oil on each eyelid makes you reach REM sleep and stay asleep. It's the best cure I've found for waking up often in the night.


Apple Cider Vinegar and Baking Soda
Posted by Beth (New Jersey) on 10/27/2017
★★★★★

I never had trouble sleeping until I got older(50 plus).. For ten years now, I would go to sleep for two hours then wake up for several hours. I discovered by listening to a naturopathic doctor on the radio that the culprit was the digestive system. Before bedtime I put a pinch or two (about 1/8 TSP.) of baking soda into 1-2 tsps. of ACV until the fizzing stops. Add about a half cup of water. Unbelievable results on my sleeping issue. No more waking up during the night, but if I do, I am able to go right back to sleep. This remedy is a God-send.


Apple Cider Vinegar and Baking Soda
Posted by Josie (New York) on 07/30/2013
★★★★★

I've tried 1 tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar plus 1/4 teaspoon Baking Soda remedy (mixed into 1 cup hot water) for insomnia for the past 2 nights. I have no idea why, but it seems to be working. Both nights, I fell asleep within 10 minutes of going to bed, whereas I usually don't fall asleep for 4- 6 hours, or until the sun comes up. My question is, can I take this mixture every night for insomnia, or do I have to take days off? From the ACV + Baking Soda recipe page, the instructions appeared to be take for 5 days on and 2 days off, but those were listed under an instruction for people with Acid Reflux, so I don't know if the 5 days on/2 off is for everybody or only for people with Acid Reflux. Thanks!!


Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Nicole ( Seattle, Wa) on 03/13/2010
★★★★★

If you get constipation from taking ACV you may need to add baking soda to your ACV. This is why I believe Ted recommends to add the baking soda to ACV. Some of us are just too acidic and therefore do not have enough "buffers" in order to drink the ACV alone. This method has eliminated the constipation issues for me.


Insomnia
Posted by Mama To Many (Tennessee) on 08/12/2021
★★★★★

Last week I started taking some Motherwort twice a day. (2 droppers of the tincture twice daily - once in the morning and once before bed)

After a few days, I noticed that my sleep was better. I have a fitbit and each morning take note of how my sleep was the night before. It has been interesting to see what helps my sleep. Definitely, 15 mg of melatonin at night has improved the ratio of deep sleep and REM sleep to light sleep. After a few days of the Motherwort, I realized that my deep sleep is improved further. I wasn't taking it for sleep and it took me a little bit to even realize what in my routine had changed.

Motherwort is a relaxing herb. It is sometimes used for racing heart or for anxiety - I guess often the two go together. And apparently, it can help improve sleep!

I make my own motherwort tincture. I have used Herb Pharm's Motherwort tincture in the past and find it to be a quality brand if you are looking for Motherwort!

~Mama to Many~


Calcium
Posted by Maria (Canberra, Australia) on 08/28/2020
★★★★★

A well known Homoeopathic doctor once told me that during sleep the blood leaches calcium from the bones and that taking an alfalfa tablet at night is a good way to take calcium in. (If burned in the field, the ash from an alfalfa crop tests 90% calcium.)

Importantly, being easily absorbed, it doesn't leave deposits in the joints. I've found that for me a low dose is best, the higher strength caused constipation.


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