Sleep is one of the most important aspects of life.
We spend a third of our life sleeping. Without adequate sleep, life can become unbearable.
Most people occasionally experience some difficulties with sleep.
This temporary difficulty is natural and does not indicate any condition or disease.
When sleep problem becomes chronic and begins to effect the individual’s quality of life, there is a need to treat it.
Different forms of sleep disorders include:
– Problems falling asleep.
– Waking up during the night with/without difficulty falling back asleep
– Dream disturbed sleep
– Restless sleep
While the causes of sleep disorders are many, the common ones are:
– Direct causes, which are usually Emotional, like Stress, Anger, Worry, Anxiety
– Other issues which may directly effect sleep like Diet, Eating habits, Over working, Shift work, etc.
– Different conditions which lead to sleep disturbances are Sleep Apnea, Restless Legs Syndrome, and more
Western medical science looks at sleep disorders as a disturbance in the Circadian clock, or the natural mechanism in our brain which regulates sleep and wakefulness.
The main two neurotransmitters that are involved in the regulation of sleep and wake time are Melatonin, which is the main compound that help us sleep and Serotonin which keeps us awake and alert.
Natural medicine’s approach to the treatment of Insomnia is first to try and eliminate the conditions that lead to the disturbance in the first place.
Looking at the different forms of stress the person in experiencing, different types of treatments and possible changes in personal lifestyle or habits is where treatment begins.
Counselling can be very helpful, and making long term changes with lifestyle, diet and supplements use is another common approach. Western natural treatment usually begins with the supplementation of Melatonin and possibly the Amino Acid Tryptophan, or the more available form of supplement, 5HTP.
Tryptophan is the brain’s building block for Melatonin and Serotonin. In the natural medicine field we use today a metabolite of Tryptophan called: 5 hydroxy tryptophan, or 5HTP.
(It is important the check with your family Dr. or practitioner before supplementing with anything, if you are taking any prescription drugs for sleep, depression and other emotional/ mental conditions).
Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) and Acupuncture are the best forms of treatments for sleep disorders/insomnia. In TCM, Insomnia is not addressed as one “disease” or “condition”, but as many different syndromes leading to sleep disorders. Also, in TCM the diagnosis of sleep disorders or insomnia is different from person to person. There are more than 6 common syndromes in TCM which lead to Insomnia in most people.
Dr. Lebel will spend the first visit – gathering information and listening to the patients in order to arrive at the correct diagnosis. He will then treat the patients, usually with Acupuncture and a Herbal remedies.
For many years now, Dr. Lebel has successfully treated many patients that suffer from Insomnia. The Acupuncture and TCM Herbal remedies are his first choice of treatments; however, he also uses Western Herbal remedies, Homeopathic remedies, supplement, diet and lifestyle changes as needed.
For any questions or for more information, please feel free to contact Dr. Lebel.
Dr. Eyal Lebel is both a Dr.of TCM, Acupuncture, as well as a Master herbalist of “western herbal medicine” in Vancouver, BC.