Tired? Wired? Reasons Your Sleep Schedule Could Be Affected

affect your sleep schedule

Reasons Your Sleep Schedule Could Be Affected

While we all desire to jump into bed at the end of a busy day and get some quality shut-eye, that is often easier said than done. Many of us lay down intending to fall asleep, but instead, we end up rolling around, trying to get comfortable, and sometimes it can be hours before we actually drift off. 

There can be many reasons why we have trouble sleeping, but the good news is that if you find the culprit and make a change, you can get better rest. We are here to help. Let’s talk about why sleep is so important and a few common issues that can prohibit us from falling asleep at night. Follow this guide, and you can have the sweet dreams you desire.

The Importance Of Sleep

You must get the necessary seven to nine hours of sleep because that is the time when your body rests and recovers from a long day of keeping you alive. Sleep also helps to strengthen our immune system, so we don’t easily get sick, and it restores our brains so we can think clearly the next day. If you are ever at work and find that you are unable to focus or that you are irritable while working as a team, then it is likely due to a short night of rest.

A lack of sleep could also affect your hormone levels, which could result in other physical ailments. For instance, the cortisol that fights stress and enhances your brain activity can only be properly manufactured if you get enough rest. So, that explains why you feel more on edge after a night of poor sleep. The bottom line is that you need to find the answer to your sleep issues so that you can be happier and healthier overall.

Determine If You Have a Sleep Disorder

While there are many habits and negative actions that we do every day that can prevent sleep at night, sometimes, there may be a medical reason for your bedtime woes. For instance, the term “insomnia” is thrown around a lot, but it is actually a diagnosable medical condition. If it happens more than a few nights in a row, then it is considered chronic insomnia, and you may want to speak to a doctor to understand the issue. 

Other medical conditions can affect your sleep, including restless leg syndrome, which is an overwhelming need to move your legs that can easily keep you awake, and sleep apnea, where your breathing stops intermittently during the night. You may not always realize that you have these conditions, so go to a medical professional, tell them your symptoms, and they may be able to provide some relief. 

You Are Too Stressed

While a lack of sleep can make you feel more anxious during the day, if you are always stressed when you’re awake, then it will also affect your sleep. It can be an endless circle. Essentially, if you are constantly worried about your job, friend and family relationships, and life changes while you are lying in bed, then your thoughts will be too busy to allow you to drift off and stay asleep.

To try and quell this cycle, you need to find a way to be less stressed during the day. That could include talking to your company about a lightened workload, meeting with your family to sort out your issues, or seeing a professional therapist if it gets to that point. If you feel better during the day, you may be able to fall asleep more easily at night.

Sometimes stress doesn’t come from the typical factors and can instead be due to a lack of organization at work or home. At your job, it is important to set a task list for yourself each day to accomplish your goals during your working hours, so you don’t wake up in the middle of the night because you think that you forgot to accomplish a task.

At home, you may unknowingly be stressed because your house is disheveled or disorganized. When our spaces are cluttered, it can negatively impact our minds because we feel like we are losing control of our life and that can carry over into bedtime. It is important to remember that decluttering your home won’t happen overnight, but you can start by going room by room to see what you no longer need. So, in the closet, you can remove and donate any clothes that you haven’t worn in the last year. In the living room, clear out your side tables and bookshelves, so you only have what you need. Go from there, and you could feel better when you lay your head on your pillow. 

What You Eat and Drink Could Be Factors

For many people, their diet and the timing of their meals are what sabotages them at bedtime because the wrong substances at the wrong time could interrupt their sleep. For instance, many of us drink a lot of coffee to get through our exceptionally busy days, but drinking caffeine can keep us awake at night because it works by blocking the hormone melatonin, which promotes restful sleep. As a general rule, try to avoid coffee and caffeine up to 5-6 hours before you plan to go to bed.

The specific foods we eat can also cause issues. To sleep well at night, you want to avoid any foods that include caffeine as an ingredient. Also, the negative effects of spicy foods, like gas or an upset stomach, can get worse when you lay down, which could hurt your sleep. It is okay to eat these meals during the day but avoid them right before going to bed. As a general rule, you should try to have dinner or your last meal a couple of hours before you lay down. 

Our digestive system works best when we are standing up, so if you go to sleep immediately after eating, then your food doesn’t get a chance to digest, and you could start to feel the effects of heartburn, which could keep you awake. In addition to getting enough sleep, this lack of proper digestion can also lead to unintended weight gain.

As you can see, many different factors can negatively affect your sleep schedule and keep you up at night. Consider the possibilities and solutions offered here and get the rest you need and desire.

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Article Author Details

Charlie Fletcher

Charlie Fletcher is a freelance writer living in the pacific northwest who has a variety of interests including sociology, politics, business, education, health, and more.