Answered by: Susan Eagles
Question from: Wade
Posted on: November 10, 1998

I have have chronic insomnia. Working nights is my profession, so sleep during the day is critical to me. I wake up every hour. Sometimes the total sleep without interruption is about 3-4 hours. I don’t want to take the narcotic types of medicines. I found some information here in Austin on line that Gotu Kola is for the use of chronic insomnia. I however, found out later that this herb has nothing to do with insomnia. I cut out the right foods and watch what I eat before I go to bed. I’ve even taken benadryl but it has reverse effects. What herb would work best: chamomile, valerian, lime/linden flowers, passion flower? I’m mostly interested in the tincture/liquid forms. Can the herbs above be taken together and are they all available in liquid forms?

I assume that in watching your diet, you are not consuming any stimulants such as caffeine (tea, coffee, chocolate) or colas, and that you are eating a small, fat-free, non-spicy meal as your "evening meal".

Chamomile, valerian, passionflower and limeflowers are all good relaxants, are available in liquid format, and can be mixed. Particularly good sedatives are Valerian and Hops. Hops is known to be so sedating that it must not be taken in depression, as it can lower the mood. Watching your dosage so that you do not exceed the recommended daily dosage on the tinctures you purchase, you are best to take a dose an hour before bedtime, one as you are getting into bed, and another if you wake up a few hours later. Once your body has settled into the routine, you will probably be able to decrease the dosage.

Lavender is very relaxing. You could try bathing an hour before bedtime with a few drops of lavender essential oil added to your bath water.

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