How do you sleep when you are mourning a loved one and are overwhelmed by grief? It’s a common question that those in mourning are often left asking themselves. Grief can rob you of the ability to do even the most basic tasks, and that includes sleep. While there are no easy ways to lessen your grief, there are some simple ways to improve your sleep, even when you are working through loss. Below are some things you can try to help relieve your sleep issues.
Breathe Easier After Loss
When you lose someone you love, it can seem difficult to carry on with life as usual. If you have recently lost a spouse, you may even find breathing to be a challenge. Grief is a very personal experience, so allow yourself some time to process all the emotions and thoughts you may have right now. If you want to improve your sleep, improving the air in your home could help you to breathe at least a little easier. Indoor pollution can make health issues so much worse, and your immune system may already be compromised when mourning. So, try to give your body a break from the effects of indoor air pollution by having someone help you change out filters and clean up around your home. For convenience, as well as to give yourself one less thing to worry about during this time, you can sign up for air filter subscription services that deliver filters right to your door. Also, consider adding an air purifier in your bedroom to help you feel better and get better rest during this difficult time. If you still have troubles breathing or experience snoring at night, you may also want to consider treatment for sleep apnea.
Bring a Sense of Renewal to Your Bedroom
When you are grieving, you may often feel the need to refresh some areas of your life. When sleep has become an issue, making changes to your bedroom can be just the kind of refresh you need to better relax. Start with your wall colors, and consider getting rid of any bright hues. Bold, bright shades may add some style, but they often take away from your ability to sleep. Opt for neutral bedroom colors instead to make it easier for you to stay calm.
You may also need to think about looking for a new mattress as well, especially if yours is old or worn out. If you have a preferred sleeping position, keep this in mind when you are out looking for a new mattress. Your sleeping position can determine what level of support you need at night. If you have a TV in your room, take it out, as this is an activity that affects sleep, but do consider adding some devices and gadgets that might make it easier for you to relax or that will help you improve your sleep in other ways.
Take Care of Your Body and Mind
When you lose sleep, you lose the ability to process emotions in a healthy way. Lack of sleep can lead to mental health issues. However, if your grief has turned into depression, not sleeping will only make your symptoms worse. So, try to make yourself practice habits that will nurture your mind, body, and soul. When you wake up, try to go for a walk or get some kind of exercise. Physical activity can actually improve your sleep habits and will provide some endorphins that can make pain feel lesser. Of course, it’s also important to take care of your mind and soul as well. Many people find comfort from stress and sleep issues by beginning a daily meditation practice. Guided meditations can help ground your emotions and relieve any feelings of anxiety that could be interfering with your ability to sleep, and to process your grief.
Working through grief is already hard enough, but mourning without sleep can be devastating to your health. Showing yourself extra care during this process is the only way to get through it, and helping yourself sleep better is the best form of self-care you can commit to right now. So, do what you need to get the rest you deserve and the sleep your body needs.
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Guest Post Author Lucille Rosetti created TheBereaved.org as a means of sharing tools to help people through the grief process. Having lost some of the people closest to her, she understands what it’s like and how it can be an emotional roller coaster that doesn’t always seem to make sense. She’s currently writing a book, Life After Death: A Wellness Guide for the Bereaved.