An award-winning New Zealand hypnotherapist is offering a free online recording to help any stress-related sleeping problems caused by the Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak.

Jenny Hudgell from Levin said she just wants to help ease any anxiety brought on by the worldwide pandemic, using hypnosis.

Hudgell, who had been practising hypnotherapy for more than 10 years, was concerned with reports the virus outbreak was having detrimental effects on people's sleep.

"The coronavirus pandemic has drastically changed the way we live our everyday lives and is forcing us to deal with emotions such as anxiety that can be a constant drain to our health, both mentally and physically," she said.

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"As the nationwide lockdown goes on, people's levels of anxiety are increasing and those who suffer from sleeping problems such as insomnia are struggling to get enough sleep."

"Many people have actually found themselves suffering with sleep issues for the first time in their lives."

Hudgell, who operates All About You Hypnotherapy from Palmerston North and Levin, offers a complimentary hypnosis recording that could be accessed through her website allaboutyouhypno.co.nz

She wanted to help combat any broken sleeping patterns by offering a free 12-week community "give back" programme, to help people around the world cope with the impacts of changes caused by the outbreak.

"We need good quality sleep to function properly, and by stressing over the coronavirus we are keeping our minds and bodies wide awake and on high alert when they need to recharge," she said.

"While it is natural to be worried about the future with the coronavirus still impacting day-to-day life, we need to find ways to control these worries to limit the negative effects of poor sleep.

"I teach my clients hypnotherapy techniques that will help them deal with the barriers that are currently making their lives difficult."

"By introducing sleeping strategies that target their restlessness such as induced relaxation, focused attention, symptom control and guided imagery, we can ease the worries and tensions that are currently preventing sleep."

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"Not dealing with sleep issues can lead to being unable to fall asleep at all, waking up several times during the night, having more intense and emotional dreams, waking up feeling tired and groggy the next morning, finding it difficult to concentrate or function properly, and feeling highly irritable."

"The bottom line is, sleep becomes more elusive when we are anxious. Hypnosis can help many forms of sleep issues such as insomnia."

Hudgell advised sleep hypnotherapy as a new approach to try as an alternative to traditional methods that perhaps do not work for everybody.

"Unlike sleep medications, sleep hypnotherapy has no side effects so it can be an aid for those who can't or don't want to take sleeping pills."

"Being unable to sleep only creates more frustration and leads to more tiredness, so I can't recommend this hypnosis recording enough if you are experiencing sleep problems during lockdown."

Alongside her hypnosis recording tailored to improving sleep, Hudgell had also written a blog which includes five tips to achieve better sleep.

1. Limit news intake and avoid your mobiles and tablets for at least an hour before bed. Do something to boost your mood before bed - a humorous television programme or an uplifting podcast can help you sleep.

2. Have structure to your day. Our brains and bodies love structure. Wake, exercise, eat and sleep at similar times each day.

3. Focus on your breathing. Think about resting rather than sleeping. Follow your breathing by silently whispering the words 'in' and 'out' to induce sleep.

4. Learn to relax. Relaxation can switch off the stress response, both physically and mentally. Find something that works for you, whether that is mindfulness meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, deep breathing or a long hot bath.

5. If you can't sleep, get out of bed. Your bed should not be a battleground. Instead, try to enjoy the sensation of merely resting.