Help for insomnia
Summer or winter, insomnia is a big problem for many - but we have solutions that are easy as A, B, ZZZ... Here are holistic therapist Katie Light’s tips for a restful night...
Drink warm almond milk before bed (it contains hormone-balancing tryptophan and protein to sustain you) and avoid sugar, caffeine and alcohol, which cause restlessness.
Keep your feet warm: soft sloppy socks may help.
Jot down any worries before bed to avoid feeling anxious if you wake, and do a weekly ‘mind declutter’: draw a circle, put your to-do list inside it and your let-go-of list outside it.
If you wake, put one hand on your heart, the other on your tummy. Breathe in gently, letting your stomach rise. Exhale slowly through your mouth, letting yourself sink into the bed.
MY HEALTH: LORRAINE KELLY, 53, TV PRESENTER
I read all the time: newspapers, briefs, scripts, tweets, e-mails - and with two shows daily [Daybreak and Lorraine], I have about 12 interviews a day to prep for. I always have a book in my bag, too.
I used to have good vision, but ten years ago I had Lasik laser surgery for distance so I could read the Autocue. However, in recent years I started to need glasses – the clinic warned me this could be the case because as you age it becomes more difficult to focus on near objects [presbyopia]. Wearing glasses was so inconvenient because I kept losing them – down the sofa at work and sometimes on my head. I had to hold newspapers so far away to focus that I was running out of arm length.
Dr. Hilary Jones told me about a procedure called Blended Vision laser surgery [for presbyopia]. He explained that as we age, the muscles round our eyes, which help the lens to zoom in and out so we can focus on near and distant objects, weaken. Experts didn’t think it was possible to correct but Professor Dan Reinstein, a surgeon at the London Vision Clinic, developed a laser procedure, which has been performed on over 30,000 patients to date.
Each eye is adjusted slightly differently: one to see mostly at distance, the other mostly close-up. The brain combines the two images so you can see near and far much better. I had an intensive pre-op consultation to see if I was suitable. Dan Reinstein explained the procedure and that problems are very rare.
I was an ideal candidate. I only needed one eye adjusting, which took about a minute. I then had to use eye drops for a week and couldn’t wear eye make-up. Luckily I didn’t have dry eye [a temporary side effect] and recovered within a week. On average it takes four months to adapt fully. I got all I wanted – to be able to read without my specs. [This may not apply to every patient.]
London Vision Clinic is at www.londonvisionclinic.com. Laser Blended Vision costs about £4,800 for both eyes, including examination, surgeon consultation and aftercare. Initial screening is complimentary
BOOK OF THE WEEK: DON'T YOU DARE - OVER 100 FUN THINGS TO DO
According to Jools Oliver, this book by children’s entertainers Sharky and George ‘is a must-have bible for parents… It has made our long car journeys, dreary wet weekends and quiet afternoons at home a delight.’ Add the long summer holidays to Jools’s list – and think building dams, playing enemy spotlight in the garden at night, and making seaweed tails – where anyone who loses their tail becomes an arm-wiggling starfish.
• Don’t You Dare: Over 100 Fun Things to Do by Sharky and George/£12.99 - buy here