Are you spending more time trying to fall asleep than actually sleeping? From drinking chamomile tea, to counting sheep, to supplementing melatonin and magnesium, we’ve tried everything.
What you may not have heard of, is the 4-7-8 breathing technique! It can work wonders before bedtime (as well as any other time you are feeling stressed).
The 4-7-8 breathing technique is a breathing pattern developed by Dr. Andrew Weil. It is based on an ancient yogi technique called Pranayama, which helps practitioners learn control over their breathing and mind. Here’s how it works:
- Sit or lay comfortably in a straight up position
- Place the tip of your tongue on the ridge of your gums, just under your front teeth
- Inhale quietly through your nose to the count of four
- Hold your breath for the count of seven
- Exhale through your mouth to the count of eight, while making a ‘woosh’ sound
- Repeat the cycle four times
What are the benefits?
This three-step breathing technique is intended to slow your heart rate, decrease anxiety, manage food cravings and control emotional responses like anger. Deep breathing is one of the BEST and easiest practices you can learn to achieve calmness.
A slower breathing rate cues your body to enter sleep mode because your resting heart rate lowers while you snooze.
Feature Image by Kinga Cichewicz