February 3, 2011

A Practical New Book for Insomniacs: Master Your Sleep

An informative new book is on the market about sleep, it’s importance, why we don’t get enough, and what we can do about it. In Master Your Sleep: Proven Methods Simplified, author Tracey Marks, MD, tells us that more than one third of Americans – over 100 million people - have clinically-diagnosed sleep disorders!

What has happened in our society where people cannot rest properly? There are more folks awake in the middle of the night than we can imagine, tossing and turning, staring at the ceiling, chronically sleep-challenged.

We know that many more than this 100 million have occasional or frequent bouts of insomnia, causing frustration and even dread. Aside from a sense of helplessness, what is this doing to one’s ability to think clearly, be alert, and have energy throughout the day? To keep the immune system functioning? How are these millions managing on the job? Emotionally?

Dr. Marks says insomnia is underlying many quality of life issues such as anxiety and burnout. It also puts people at risk for weight gain, diabetes, heart disease, compromised mental abilities, and shortened lifespan.

What are your options if you are one of the 100 million with a bona fide sleep disorder? Or, even if you are an occasional insomniac? Pills aren’t the definitive answer. If taking sleep medication worked over time, returning you to the type of sleep required for good health and mental balance, the problem would be easier to solve. But this isn’t the case. Pharmaceutical and over-the-counter drugs have their drawbacks, as do natural and herbal remedies.

In her new book, Master Your Sleep, Dr. Marks outlines numerous simple methods that support the body to fall asleep at bedtime and wake up refreshed. She has an easy-to-read, straightforward style with a refreshingly sensible and practical approach. Her prescription for a “sleep hygiene” program encourages the body and mind to accept a more healthful sleep pattern. As an added bonus for parents, she discusses what to do if your children have sleep troubles.

I always appreciate an expert that can offer sound advice with the goal of addressing underlying issues. That is what Dr. Marks does in her new book. So, for those of you who find yourself looking up at the dark ceiling more often than you care to, get a copy of Master Your Sleep: Proven Methods Simplified and follow the advice of Dr. Marks. Meanwhile, consider doing my favorite of her suggestions: take the laptop out of the bedroom and keep your computer activities in another room.

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