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  • Writer's pictureMonica Fauble

Sleep Advice from Acupuncture That You Haven’t Heard Before



Monica Fauble, Licensed Acupuncturist

Some of you might know that I’m an early bird. 9pm is my favorite bedtime, but, lately, I’ve been finding myself with a bedtime closer to 10pm while still waking up at 5:30 or 6:00. While most sleep-hygiene advice tells you to keep a regular bedtime, and that’s more or less sound advice, what that doesn’t account for is seasonal rhythms.


The Huang di nei jing su wen (one of the oldest source texts of Chinese Medicine) has this advice for seasonal sleep rhythms.


Spring & Summer: “Go to rest late at night and rise early.”

Fall: “Go to rest early and rise early.” 

Winter: “Go to rest early and rise late.” 


With the sun being brighter in the spring and summer, going to bed a bit later might work well for you. Sleep is seasonal, and is a part of seasonal rhythms, just like everything else! 


There is a “second wind” in Chinese Medicine that happens around 11pm, so I do advise most everyone to try to be in bed by 10pm or so, when possible. 


Some of my other favorite non-traditional sleep advice includes:


  1. Sleeping in natural fabrics (cotton, linen) and sleeping on cotton (or linen) bed sheets. Microfiber traps heat, and it also isn’t great for those of us with sensitive skin. If you’re sleeping entirely on/with non-natural fiber sheets, get one set of cotton sheets and see if it makes a difference. Once you’ve switched your sheets and sleepwear, you don’t even need to think about this tip anymore. 

  

  1. When you start to settle in your bed, ask yourself: “Am I allowing the mattress to hold my full weight?” This might seem silly to you, but this question from my restorative yoga teacher Jillian Pransky, has helped me find deeper relaxation. We often don’t allow ourselves to rest back into the support of our beds, or of support in general. Try this out and let me know what you discover! 


  1. Avoid caffeine. Ugh, this one. I know! I love the taste of espresso and black tea but I’ve weaned myself off both as a daily substance and now only drink these once or twice a week in small quantities as a total treat. I’ve learned that either will negatively impact my sleep (even when I finish drinking them well before lunch) but, for now, the enjoyment is worth it. Sometimes we make trade offs and that’s ok. 


Did you know that acupuncture can help with anxiety, sleep disturbances, and perimenopause-related shifts? Reach out to schedule a free consult and to learn more about how acupuncture can help you recover your natural restfulness.


Do you have favorite tips to help you sleep? Do you find that your sleep shifts seasonally? I would love to hear what’s true for you.


Happy Summer,

Monica 



Out of town June 15th? I am also offering “Summer Solstice Reset” on Zoom on Saturday June 22nd at 1pm. Register on my website

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