Almost everyone is dealing with some level of stress. Though occasional stressors flare up and dissipate, there's another kind of stress that builds up in our daily lives to become chronic.
This stress affects your health, your body, and your immune system.
Needless to say, stress can also negatively impact your sleep. It's important to know how to sleep when stressed.
4 Ways Stress Negatively Affects Your Sleep
These are the most common ways that stress affects your sleep.
Trouble Falling Asleep
It's important to keep regular cycles of sleep and rest; however, when we're experiencing stress, we often find that we have trouble falling asleep.
When that happens, we should not lie there fretting about it. Instead of lying in bed trying to force some "stress sleeping," it is more productive to get out of bed to engage in a soothing, restful activity.
- Reading a book
- Taking a bath
- Listening to music
- Journaling or scrapbooking
When you begin to feel sleepy, crawl back into bed and try falling asleep again.
Decrease in Quality Sleep
According to studies published by the National Library of Medicine, those who are stressed experience "decreases in slow wave sleep, REM sleep, and sleep efficiency (SE)." That means even when you're able to fall and stay asleep, the sleep you experience is less restful than the sleep you enjoy when you're not stressed.
Decreases in sleep quality can be frustrating, and even more so when you're stressed. Being stressed makes you tired, and being tired only contributes to your stress.
It's a vicious cycle, one that we must learn to break.
Increase in Awakenings
Just as you may have trouble falling asleep, you will have trouble staying asleep when you're stressed.
Whether you're just starting to doze off or you awaken with a jerk mid-snore, waking up in the middle of the night is never a pleasant experience. In most cases, those who experience interrupted sleep find that their minds race, making it even harder for them to fall back to sleep.
If you wake up and stay awake for more than twenty minutes, it's highly recommended that you get out of bed, go to another room, and engage in a restful activity until you feel sleepy again.
Lower Overall Quality of Life
When you are not getting enough sleep, you experience lower overall quality of life.
- Decreased immune system efficiency
Naturally, if you're already stressed, your anxiety will only increase the less you're sleeping. Then, in turn, you'll sleep worse due to being stressed.
In order to interrupt this downward spiral, you'll need to do something proactive.
Decrease Your Stress Load
Decreasing your stress load may sound like a challenge, but it's not impossible. By making changes to your daily routines, work responsibilities, or family patterns, you may find that you're able to enact some positive change fairly quickly. Consider the areas in your life that are causing you the most stress and start there.
You may also want to consider
- Exercising regularly
- Drinking plenty of water and eating nutritious meals
- Keeping daily habits and routines
- Ensuring that your sleep environment is cozy and conducive to a good night's sleep
Come Visit Land of Sleep
Reversing the negative impact of stress won't be easy, but we're here to help.
When it comes time for a new mattress, Land of Sleep has just what you need, We carry a large selection of mattresses and offer free, same-day delivery and removal of your old mattress. Come discover all we have to offer. Start sleeping better tonight!