Why can’t you Sleep?

Some people may have trouble sleeping as they have insomnia- this is the inability to get a good night sleep or even sleep at all. It can be caused by stress, anxiety, depression etc. Many factors can be involved in why you cannot sleep for example the diet you maintain or the lifestyle you may lead such as consuming alcohol.

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Why Do You Keep Waking Up?

There are many reasons for waking up through the night, not being able to sleep.  One of these reasons is called Sleep Apnea. Sleep Apnea is the most common cause of being awake when you do not want to be. The main symptoms of a person who has this disorder may notice: Snoring, difficulty concentrating in day-to-day life, gasping for air at night, tiredness in the day and headaches in the morning.

Another reason why you may have trouble sleeping is if you have a nightmare/dream and it has startled you, you may wake up and have issues with going back to sleep. Some people, often children believe that dream catchers help with the ‘scary dreams’ . children or adults make them self believe that the dream catcher will drain the dream out of your head so that you are safe and able to sleep.

Anxiety and depression have a big impact on sleeping too as many of these people who suffer with this condition are over-thinkers, so it is hard for them to shut down at night time so they stay awake.

Urination is a factor in having trouble sleeping, this may be just generally needing to urinate or there could be an underlaying condition such as pregnancy, enlarged prostate, diabetes, side effects of taking medications and an overactive bladder.  You could avoid this by limiting fluid intake before bed, taking certain medications earlier in the day and avoiding spicy foods.

Overheating is another factor as you will suddenly wake up if your body temperature is too high. A person sleeps better when their body temperature is cool. People can suffer with night sweats – this could be prevented by speaking to a professional and seeking advice. If you are too hot at night, it is best to remove a blanket or get a thinner one. Also, you could open a window and let some fresh air in.

Common Sleep Disorders

There are many types of sleep disorders, but these are the top 5 main ones:

  • Restless leg syndrome (RLS) – it is a condition which causes an uncontrollable urge to move during sleep, mainly your legs. Usually, it is an uncomfortable sensation which commonly happens when laying or sitting down.

 

  • Insomnia – this is a condition which makes it hard to sleep or even stay asleep, it may cause you to wake up early and not get back to sleep. It can affect your energy levels and mood. It can be caused by stress, poor sleeping habits, diet and lifestyle.

 

  • Sleep apnoea- this is a serious sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts throughout the night. Some people must have a sleep apnoea machine which allows the person to have constant oxygen passing through their nose and into their lungs.

 

  • Narcolepsy- this is a condition that causes extreme tendencies to fall asleep whenever in a relaxing surrounding.

 

  • REM Sleep Behaviour Disorder (RMD)- this is rapid eye movement- this entails you to physically act out unpleasant dreams with sounds and often violent arm and leg movement. This is often referred to as dream enacting behaviour.

Self-help for Sleep Disorders

There are many ways that can potentially help with trying to get a good night’s sleep:

  • Making sure your bedroom is dark and quiet- potentially using a black out blind, eye mask, curtains.
  • Could have a relaxing light on/ night light to make the room feel cosy and welcoming.
  • Make sure your bed is comfy- enough pillows and comfy bedding.
  • Exercise regularly throughout the day
  • Setting routines – try and go to bed at the same time each day
  • Sometimes drinking warm milk helps
  • Take a bath
  • Read a book
  • Just relaxing
  • If severe disorder, then you could seek medical advice such as tablets.

What are the effects of Sleep Deprivation?

Sleep deprivation can cause some serious damage if not helped or just left. Here are some examples of the effects it could have on you as a person:

  • Heart attack
  • High blood pressure
  • Hear failure
  • Diabetes
  • depression
  • And many more…

It can influence your daily life as you will have a lack of energy all the time and you will feel lethargic often which isn’t good if you go to work as you will be in a never-ending cycle of not sleeping. Not sleeping can have a massive impact on your mental health for example it is mostly over thinkers that suffer with not being able to sleep so they get into a state of worry and could lead to depression/anxiety.

By not sleeping you could gain a weak immune system where you are subject to be getting ill if you are not careful. Lack of sleep can cause poor balance and that means you are prone to falls and other accidents such as tripping over.

People who don’t get enough sleep often have a lower sex drive due to a drop in testosterone levels as a result of not sleeping.

With sleep deprivation you may experience weight gain this is because the chemicals that signal to your brain that are off balance. As a result of this you are more likely to eat more food even when you have had enough to eat.

If you require any further assistance with your sleeping habits, please don’t hesitate to contact one of our pharmacists today..

This news blog was written on behalf of Medicine Drop. The views in this blog are that of the authors and you should not take the information as factual without speaking to your GP or Pharmacist for health advice.