Dealing with exam stress

Exam NervesExam stress getting to your teenager? Did you know that gelsemium, also known as yellow jasmine, can help to calm nerves if you're feeling shaky or jittery before an exam.

A Good Night's Sleep

Getting a good night's sleep is more than just feeling well-rested, as it has a huge effect on our overall physical health and our mental wellbeing. Research has shown that good sleep levels directly correlate with our ability to make decisions, our emotional regulation, concentration and productivity. So we really need to be getting uninterrupted, peaceful sleep in order to be functioning well and feeling good in ourselves!

However, when faced with a fast-paced work life alongside social commitments, as well as busy home lives – it can be hard to prioritise sleep. Add technology, 24-hour social media, and multiple screens into the equation – and sleep can often be compromised.

Here are some top tips on how to improve the quality of your sleep – backed up by the research and advice provided by the NHS, Mind, and the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School:

Establish a sleeping pattern

Going to bed and getting up at roughly the same time every day will programme your body to sleep better – and start to naturally shut down in anticipation of sleep.

Make an effort to wind down and avoid tech

The use of bright, back-lit screens from laptops and phones in the evenings has been shown to negatively affect sleep. Try and distance yourself from screens before bedtime and do something relaxing, such as listening to music or reading a book – which has been proven to help people prepare for sleep.

Create a restful space

Try and ensure that your bedroom is peaceful and sleep-friendly. Temperature, light and noise can all affect how easy it is to fall asleep and stay asleep – and can be quite easily altered.

Exercise early on

Exercise is a really good way to tire you out, and relax you – all helping with falling straight to sleep and sleeping soundly. However, if you exercise right before bedtime, then the endorphins pumping around your body could keep you awake. So try and schedule your workouts earlier, or give yourself time to unwind after – perhaps a warm shower and a good book.

Cut off the caffeine

Caffeine is a stimulant, so consuming it close to going to bed will interrupt your ability to sleep, and your body will struggle to shut down. The advice is to cut down on caffeine after 18:00, or at least four hours before you want to go to sleep.

Try not to clock watch

If you are struggling to get to sleep, then avoid clock-watching, as this only makes you more stressed and frustrated, which in turn will keep you awake. Moreover, looking at a screen to 'tire yourself out' will actually reactivate your brain as it is stimulated by the light! Instead, you could try doing something you find relaxing until you feel sleepy again.

Bowen Therapy for Children

The UK's Bowen Therapy Professional Association has recently launched it’s “Bowen Therapy for Children” video outlining the benefits of Bowen treatment for children. Parents and carers have reported improvement in symptoms of many childhood ailments and problems after their children have received Bowen Therapy. They notice better posture, balance, co-ordination and the ability to cope better with the effects of trauma.

Watch the video: Bowen Therapy for Children

Benefits may include:

  • healthier children with better concentration,
  • improved sleeping patterns,
  • enhanced motor control & behaviour,

leading to quieter, happier children

Some childhood ailments may require regular Bowen treatments.

A child's Bowen treatment is very gentle. Many report finding it a pleasant and relaxing experience. All treatments are carried out through light clothing, whilst the parent / guardian remains in the room.

Portrait Paul Black

Portrait Patricia Clark

natural healing for the whole family