Insomnia: Part 2

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Insomnia: Part 2

While sopping up some rays of warm Hawaiian sunshine a few days before Christmas, I began writing this article. (Someone has to support their economy! Why not me?)

I experimented by not using any type of clock or electronic rooster to guide my sleep cycle. I went to sleep when tired and got up when I awoke in the morning.

As most studies of this type report, I more or less followed the same schedule I follow at home in California: rise around 5-6 a.m. and go to sleep between 8-9 p.m. (Obviously, I flunked partying in college, or I've lost a step since then. Naw!)

I, and most everyone else, function best on eight to eight and one half hours sleep. When volunteers are put in caves with no access to windows, clocks, or Geraldo, they usually sleep for eight hours each day.

It appears that all creatures have an inner sleep clock, but it varies widely from species to species. Gorillas sleep 14 hrs/day. Teenagers (gorillas-in-training), need nine and a half hours. Grazing cattle rarely sleep.

But only humans experience insomnia. With indoor lighting and an "open 24 hours a day" lifestyle, we disrupt our inner clock which is set to put us to sleep when the sun goes down, and to wake us when it rises. Not much is known about inner clocks.

Leslie Gamble's inner clock and life were changed by an auto accident that happened 11 years ago. While not permanently injured, he hasn't slept at all since then!

No, I didn't read that in a supermarket tabloid along with a report that Dick Clark is really a 200 year old android. (I believe that.) The story was reported in a BBC special on sleep. For three days, Leslie was monitored 24 hours/day by British researchers.

When he went to bed, all his brain wave measurements indicated that he was still in the awake state. However, one day he actually fell asleep for a full four minutes! He was quite thrilled.

Even though awake 24 hrs/day his body and mind go through cycles that indicate he is resting, if not sleeping. No one can explain his condition. Except for this, he appears normal.

While he is unique in having total insomnia, tests indicate that one-half the population doesn't get a good night's sleep. How can we tell? By monitoring brain wave activity.

There are four basic brain wave patterns. Beta is the normal awake state. Alpha is the daydream state when your creative juices are at a max. Theta is light sleep or drowsiness and delta is the deep sleep state. "REM" sleep is the dream state in which we function as if awake.

REM stands for rapid eye movements because your eyes are moving under your eyelids.

If you do not reach the delta state, you wake up feeling achy and lethargic even though you spent enough time in bed. It just wasn't quality time.

If your delta sleep is mixed with alpha, you have insomnia.

Sleep Aids

Besides taking a level teaspoon of honey in a cup of warm milk about 20-30 minutes before retiring, and prescription and non-prescription potions, are there any sleep aids other than those mentioned in part 1 (issue #57)?

Yes, a few. The one I am most familiar with sounds like something found in pages of that renowned scientific journal, the National Enquirer.

It is a device that Edgar Cayce, the founder of modern holistic treatments, recommended for recharging your internal batteries. As a side effect, it provides a great night's sleep and was also recommended for that purpose.

It was also suggested to help with arthritis, neuritis, and hypertension. Since Cayce's recommendations were for one individual, you should not generalize that a particular treatment would be good for you because you have a similar problem.

However, if that same recommendation was given to many people, you are on safer ground assuming it might work for you. Cayce recommended this device over 450 times, often for rest and sleep.

Currently, medical science says it is a totally useless device. In the past, this same group also said that about pap smears, antiseptics, hypnosis, and chiropractors. However, they do, on occasion, save us from some harmful treatments.

Cayce called this sleep aid the Impedance Device. Impedance is an electrical term, a cousin to words like volts and kilowatts. Abetter name for the device might be "capacitor," another electrical term.

A capacitor is a device that stores electricity and releases it when needed, much like a sponge absorbs water and holds it until you squeeze it.

Cayce, along with all of the Eastern traditions, maintains that there is a subtle electric energy flow in the body. This current is so subtle that modern instruments can't detect it, and never will, he says.

Since no current can be detected, modern medicine rejects its existence. That's not unreasonable.

However, the oriental healing arts such as acupressure and acupuncture are based on manipulating this subtle energy, and they have a good track record.

Cayce said that things like colds, injuries, diet, and negative emotions, can alter the flow of this energy in the body. As a result, some parts get overstimulated and some get understimulated.

A common example would be cold hands and feet. While this can be caused by a low thyroid condition, Cayce said it was often due to an imbalance in the subtle energy flow, resulting in less blood flow to the extremities.

Is that all tabloid mumbo-jumbo, or does that really happen?

I often have cold hands during winter. When I consistently use the Impedance Device, my hands return to their normal temperature. People touching them no longer think they stuck their hand on an ice cube tray.

Cayce made many other claims for this device which others manufactured and sold. He was only interested in helping people and never received income from it.

He said that it was good for everyone, and that it would bring about better digestive forces, better circulatory forces and -- most of all -- better coordination in the nervous systems.

Concerning weight loss he said, the use of the device keeps nearer the normalcy as to weight, if any pressures are removed from the spine. This would be true for most anybody.

And if the body were to use the device...it may keep its body in almost perfect accord for many, many, many days. That's why I use it, to stay in great health for many, many, many days.

Again, he stated it would bring rest to the weary, rest to those who have been inclined to depend upon sedatives and narcotics for rest. To another he said, restlessness, insomnia, and irritation will disappear.

While these claims may seem extreme in 1992, imagine someone in the early 1900's saying that adding molds to your blood stream can cure disease. Today we know that molds like penicillin can kill bacteria and blood is the perfect transport mechanism for medication.

Someday the device will be accepted as a wonderful, non-intrusive healing device.

Using it is simple. You "charge it" by leaving it outside in the sun for a few hours. A half-hour before using it, place it in a non-metal bucket containing water and ice. Then you attach two wires from it to your body and rest or meditate for at least 20 minutes. It can be left on for hours, or all night if you use it as you retire.

It uses no source of power and has no moving parts. "The capacitor" simply absorbs your excess energies and redistributes them where needed.

I've had mine for many years and use it about eight times/month for a general tuneup. Every time I use it I wake up one hour earlier filled with pep. In the Winter I don't always get up one hour earlier, but that's another story.

You can order an impedance device from Heritage Store. Call 1-800 862-2923. The cost is $175. (I receive no commission.)

That's a lot of money to spend for something you just read about. But if I lost mine, I would not hesitate to purchase another. Since there is nothing to wear out, this device will last your entire life. If you use it each month, as I do, it will more than pay for itself.

If you want further information on this device, both for its reported preventative and curative powers, send $5 to Phil Thomas, PO Box 1379, Va. Beach, VA 23451-1379. He'll send you a lot of information.

RelaxMate

Dr. Norman Sheely, a world famous neurosurgeon, has developed another device for producing rest and sleep.

Sheely is an interesting man. After years as a renowned neurosurgeon, he gave up neurosurgery to focus on alternative ways to relieve chronic pain. Faster than you can write a prescription, he was branded a nut by the same doctors who previously revered him.

He has now reestablished his credibility as his pain clinic is one of the best in the world for helping people without the use of drugs.

In his research with thousands of pain patients he found that brain wave activity can be influenced by sound and light. His RelaxMate System includes a flashing light which can be set to different brain frequencies (alpha, theta, etc.), and an accompanying set of relaxation tapes.

Earl Staats, a subscriber and delightful, positive thinking being, markets the RelaxMate. You can contact him at: 22 Clark Ave., Box 281, Milford, DE 19963. Again, I receive no commission from the sale of this item which lists for $189.

Herbs For Sleep

While no safe herb will instantly send you off to the dream world, many herbs will relax you enough to let sleep happen. Remember, it's a natural process that we interfere with, often by being tense.

In Back to Eden, Jethro Kloss says to add a teaspoon of hops or valerian to a cup of hot water. Let it steep for 20 minutes before drinking. Hops and valerian can be ordered from the Penn Herb Co by calling 1-215-9253336. It's worth a try. Just don't expect them to react as quickly as drugs.

Dr. Reilly's Insomnia Cure

Howard Reilly, a great healer in his day, has a remedy for insomnia that he says is fool proof, though I think our modern fools have improved so much they could defeat it.

Reilly says to cover your bed with a water proof material like plastic sheeting. Then get a towel large enough to wrap around your waist and a hand sized one.

Soak the smaller towel in cold water (below 65 degrees). Loosely wring it out and fold it lengthwise so it is about 9" wide and place in on the large towel. Now wrap the combination of both towels around your waist with the cold towel touching your abdomen. Then go to bed.

I'd try it if I couldn't sleep. Fortunately, I've made a pact with my pillow. When I wrap my arms around it, it sends out an inaudible pulse that quickly lauches me into the wild blue astral yonder.

Halcion Update

Shortly after I wrote "Insomnia -- part 1", 60 Minutes did a blistering report on Halcion, the #1 prescribed sleeping pill. The manufacturer was obviously upset by the revelation that in one study of 38 prisoners who took the drug, 70% developed memory loss, depression and paranoia.

A Dutch government official stated that they had documented hundreds of adverse reactions. While not everyone responds negatively to this drug, there are enough negative reports that some governments have banned Halcion.

I'm more disturbed by the need of millions of people to take a pill to achieve sleep, something that is as natural as eating or breathing.

For those of you who depend on Halcion, have no fear. The Pill Fairy's elves are now diligently at work concocting another multi-billion dollar, safe sleeping pill.

Backed by medical studies, and the witholding of negative findings, the manufacturer will claim it is absolutely safe. Doctors will write millions of prescriptions because their patients can't perform a basic human function, falling asleep. And on and on it goes. The Pill Fairy may lose a round or two but she rebounds quickly as there is so much money to be made.

If you have a favorite treatment for insomnia, write me and I'll share it with the other readers.

To Russia, With Love

Due to the incredible change in the Russian economy, many elderly people on fixed pensions cannot afford food.

While we have many problems at home, I feel we must also reach out and help our former adversaries, especially those who can not help themselves.

I've found two ways to get food to needy people in Russia. The first is an organization that has been beaming religious broadcasts into what was Russia for many years. Send your checks to: Word To Russia, Box 846, Bryle, CA 95605 and specify that the money is to go to "Nickoli's mission" in what was formerly Russia. I heard Nickoli speak recently. These are good people.

The second is to send money to CCF, Box 26484, Richmond, VA 23261-6484. They were written up in a Sunday Supplement as one organization that specifically aids the needy in Russia. Unity also has a center in Russia, but I don't know how to reach them.

Change in Format

My usual pattern is to follow the article on physical health with one on mental and spiritual well-being. However, I felt a need to complete part two of the massage article I began two issues ago (#56). So I will.

Stress Management Press.

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