We all know that we need to sleep, but there’s always so much to DO! Preparing for this, finishing that, plus occasionally getting so caught up in your favourite health and supplement site (ahem) that you just forget where the time went. Somehow, in all that we need to get some sleep, but it can be hard to drift off easily with so much to think about. If you’re having trouble getting enough good sleep, a sleeping aid supplement can be exactly what you need.
What are sleep aids?
Sleep aid supplements
are designed to prepare your body for sleep. They’re like a lullaby in a pill form. They won’t knock you out like a sleep sedative will, but they will help you drift off to a nice, natural sleep.
Why would I want them?
Sleep is when your body does most of it’s recovery and muscle growth, so if you’re not getting the proper amount of good quality sleep, you’re not getting the maximum return on your hard exercise! They’re also a great alternative to a sleeping sedative. Besides needing a prescription for those, you can risk overdosing, or being too drowsy if you need to wake up and do something; like look after a pet, baby or go to the toilet. If you’ve taken a sedative and need to pee, it’s worse than trying to find the bathroom while drunk. Sleeping aids don’t have the same problem. They simply prepare your brain for sleep and let it do it’s thing naturally. If sleep was a night club, sleeping aids are like having your name on the VIP entrance, red carpet and all, whereas sleeping sedatives are like having four masked men bundle you into a van then throw you into the club through the sky-light, then bar the doors so you can’t leave.
How do they work?
Sleep aids can use several different active ingredients, some are designed to calm you by reducing your adrenalin levels, or increasing your relaxation hormones. Others give you the nutrients that your body uses to make these hormones, so your body can relax enough that you fall asleep. The road to sleep goes from being a winding, dingy track to an eight lane highway!
When should I take them?
As you’d expect, sleeping aids should be taken just before going to sleep. If you take them and then change your mind, you won’t be too knocked out to stay awake, though you may be a little more drowsy than usual. It's probably best taking it after working out and not before working out.
Who is it best for?
Sleeping aids are best for anyone who feels like they’re having a hard time getting quality sleep. If you’re laying there at night looking at the ceiling trying to remember who played that guy in that movie you saw three years ago, then went on to date that girl from that other movie that also had Adam Sandler as a woman in it, you might benefit from a sleeping aid. And better taste in movies. Seriously.
What are the side effects?
As with all supplements, read the dosage guidelines carefully. Also take note of the interactions, as they generally don’t go well with alcohol, tranquilisers or barbituates. If you’re worried, it’s always best to consult a health professional, especially if you regularly take other medication. Keep in mind that sleeping aids are a helper, not a magic pill. If you’re stressed because you’re about to lose your house, your being sued by a neighbour and you think your partner may be cheating on you, you should seeking professional help, not simply taking a pill.
Is it safe for women too?
Sleeping Aids are perfectly fine for women to use, as long as they take into account any other medication they may be taking. If you are on any medication, ALWAYS speak to a medical professional before taking regular or specialty supplements. It’s better to know ahead of time any potential problems.