Sometimes going to sleep after a long, hard day isn’t what it’s cracked up to be. There are times when we lie awake in bed until the wee hours of the morning and others when we wake up from a deep sleep, hours before sunrise. The latter, in our opinion, is the most troublesome!
Nonetheless, if you suffer from this aggravating issue, don’t fret. There’s most definitely help for you out there in the form of knowledgeable health professionals, sleeping aids, or even changes to exercise and diet routines. But first, let’s identify what may be disturbing your natural sleep cycle in the first place.
So, if you find that you fall asleep easily, but wake up in the middle of the night, you’re not alone. In fact, the malady is so common that sleep doctors even have a name for it—sleep-maintenance insomnia. Here are some reasons why you may be tossing and turning in the first place.
Dr. Anthony Komaroff of Harvard Medical School explains that this type of insomnia can be the annoying consequence of several unhealthy habits or lifestyle choices. For instance, if you are someone who is used to enjoying a glass (or three!) of wine after putting the kids to bed, you may actually be disrupting your natural sleep cycle.
Dr. Komaroff describes alcohol as something that makes “people sleepy and helps them fall asleep.” Sounds about right! But, once the snoozing starts, the body does not always want to stay that way, partially because alcohol is a natural stimulant. As the good doc says, “alcohol becomes a stimulant to the brain and causes people to awaken easily.”
As we all live in the 21st century, it’s safe to say that our phones are sometimes the last things that we look at before getting some shut-eye for the night. And, though the content on said phones can be mentally distracting, there may be more to it than “social media rubbernecking induced-insomnia!”
Researchers from Michigan State University have compiled a report that states that sleeplessness or general fatigue the next day could be due to the blue light that is emitted from phones. To get the rest you need, the lead study author, Dr. Russell Johnson, recommends turning off electronics between 30 to 60 minutes before bed time.
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