This 4-7-8 breathing exercise will supposedly put you to sleep in just 60 seconds.
Sleep aids, which include earplugs, eye masks, sleeping pills, as well as white noise, are all used to assist you in falling a deep and sound sleep.
However, these sleep aids can be costly for you and they often arrange for short-term solutions to sleep disorders and sleep deprivation, which continuously interferes in your good night rest.
Dr. Andrew Weil, a Harvard trained medical doctor which focuses on holistic health actually believes that getting the best sleep ever is as simple as breathing in and out.
The 21st century’s digital revolution has made it progressively difficult to get a sufficient amount of sleep, particularly with the continuous need of being connected 24/7.
On the other hand, Weil, a huge advocate of holistic breathing practices in order to fight against stress, anxiety, as well as insomnia believes this can all be resolved with a simple and easy breathing exercise.
On his website, he has written that breathing powerfully influences both of physiology and thought process, which includes moods. By just concentrating your attention on your breathing and without doing anything to change it, you can transfer in the direction of what we called relaxation.
This philosophy is used in his popular “The 4-7-8 Breathing Exercise,” or also called as “The Relaxing Breath,” which actually promotes deep and better sleep.
This is centered on pranayama, an ancient Indian practice that means “regulation of breath.” The exercise is labelled by Weil as a natural sedative for the nervous system that has the ability to ease the body into a state of calmness and relaxation.
How to do the “4-7-8” Exercise
Weil’s technique is surprisingly simple, takes short period and can be dine anywhere in just five steps. Even though you can actually do this kind of exercise in any kind of position, it is highly recommended to sit with your back straight while learning the simple exercise.
Weil has explained that you have to put the tip of your tongue against the ridge of tissue behind your upper front teeth and keep it there all throughout the exercise. You will be exhaling with the help of your mouth around your tongue; try pursing your lips slightly because it feels awkward. This is followed by the five steps that are listed below:
- Completely exhale with the help of your mouth, which makes a whoosh sound.
- Close your mouth and quietly exhale through your nose and count one to four in your mind.
- Hold your breath for a count of seven.
- Completely exhale with the help of your mouth, which makes a whoosh sound to a count of eight.
- This process is just one breath. Now, inhale again and repeat the entire process of three more times to complete four breaths.
Weil have highlighted that the most important part of this process is while you are holding your breath for eight seconds. This is because keeping the breath in will allow more oxygen to fill your lungs and then it will circulate all over the body, which produces a relaxing effect in the body.
Does the Sleep hack really works?
A life hack, particularly the 60-second sleep hack, leads numerous experts to become doubtful about such as Dr. Michelle E. Gordon, which is a founder of Northern Westchester Surgical Associates General, acute and emergency surgery specialist, have actually tried to do the Weil’s breathing technique, and proves that falling asleep in a minute does not work for her.
On the other hand, she has told Medical Daily in an email, “The breath does bring about a feeling of relaxation and calmness. I have taught it to my patients as a means of keeping them calm when they are having anxiety due to surgery or post-operative anxiety and it actually works.”
Gordon believes that the breathing exercise really works because it works in the same as the meditation does. It helps people to obtain quiet mind and let go of preoccupying thoughts.
The truth behind the Weil’s 4-7-8 exercise is to practice this technique for at least twice a day for about two months in order to perfect it or until you can truly fall asleep in just a minute. Once you have mastered it, it will be more effective and efficient, which will actually help you in dealing with anxiety and stress of life. Soon, going to bed will be as simple as taking a deep breath.