If you sleep well, you may not realize how lucky you are. Those who have difficulty sleeping are faced with a tough dilemma. Sleep deprivation is bad for your health, as many studies have shown. On the other hand, people who take sleeping pills are susceptible to a range of side effects, from heartburn to dementia. Could inexpensive acupressure wrist bands help solve this problem and offer sleep without side effects?
Acupressure Wrist Bands for Insomnia:
Q. I read in your column about a mother who purchased Sea-Bands for her son who had trouble sleeping. These elastic wrist bands are sold to counteract nausea and motion sickness, but they helped her son sleep.
Having had trouble sleeping myself, I bought a pair of Sea-Bands and tried them out. They worked the first night and have kept on working.
Of course, I know this quick remedy won’t work for all insomniacs. I told my doctor about it and he shrugged and said nothing. But I hope that others will try it and benefit.
A. Sea-Bands are elastic wrist bands with an embedded plastic button that is supposed to be placed over an acupressure point. For getting to sleep, the point is called the Inner Gate. It is located between the two tendons on the inner side of the wrist, about three finger widths from the crease where the hand meets the wrist.
Studies of Acupressure Wrist Bands:
A review of four studies on acupressure suggests that this technique can improve sleep for some people (Sleep Medicine Reviews, Feb. 2018). The acupressure wrist bands are cheap and readily accessible. As a result, scientists may not have the incentive or funding to study their effectiveness further. Consequently, you may need to do your own research.
To find out if they work for you, you might need to do an “N of 1” study. That’s a trial in which you try them out and attempt to keep other variables the same as when you are not wearing acupressure wrist bands. If you do the experiment, please let us know in the comments below what results you get.