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Putting the day to bed really matters

Published on: 1 July 2024

In our latest podcast, Dr Mike Scanlan talks about achieving good, restorative sleep. 

Dr Mike Scanlan

Listen to our latest podcast entitled Putting the day to bed really matters, where Dr Mike Scanlan, a retired therapist and lecturer in mental health, talks about sleep and achieving good restorative sleep.

Many people worry about getting a good night’s sleep and the more you worry about it, the harder it is for your brain to allow you to get to sleep. In this podcast Mike covers the architecture of sleep, difficulty getting off to sleep and how this varies from insomnia, and getting back to sleep after waking during the night. He also addresses the particular problems people may have if they have symptoms of lymphoma, such as itching or peripheral neuropathy.

In this podcast Mike talks through a number of techniques that people can try that may prove helpful. The first of these is the technique of writing things down that are playing on your mind, so your brain feels that anything troubling is being addressed. He then talks about cognitive shuffling, where you create pictures in your mind to help you try to get back to sleep, and later Mike provides visualisation techniques where you place your worries on a ‘Leaves on a Stream’ and let them float away.

Mike explains that we have a sleep window when people are more likely to be able to achieve good restorative sleep. He talks through a number of gentle changes that can have a big impact. These include sleeping in complete darkness, controlling the time you have caffeinated drinks and cooling the body in preparation for sleep. He also talks about the benefit of exercise, especially if it is taken in the morning and outdoors. For many people, having dropped off to sleep, they wake up during the night. Mike provides ideas to try and minimise the disruption of this and offers strategies to drop off again quickly. In this podcast to nap or not to nap is discussed as well as alternatives that may prove valuable. This includes NSDR (non-sleep deep relaxation), which is a type of meditative yoga which puts you into a relaxed restorative state which feels like a nap but without going to sleep. 

Putting the day to bed really matters

Dr Mike Scanlan talks about achieving good, restorative sleep.