5 Reasons Why You’re Waking Up in the Middle of the Night and How to Get Back To Sleep

By: Renad Khaled

Do you ever wake up in the middle of the night for absolutely no good reason, and no matter how hard you try to fall back into deep slumber you just totally fail? Well let me just tell you that it happens to most of us, and i’m here to help you have a goodnight sleep!

So let me start off by telling you a couple of reasons you might be waking up in the middle of the night.

  1. NIGHT TERRORS

This is definitely one of the most common (and obvious) reasons. You can experience a frightening dream in your sleep and that will most definitely wake you up. The reason behind nightmares is any emotional stress, so if you’re having a shoddy day, an argument with someone or your intake of alcohol was high, a nightmare/terror might be triggered.

  1. SNORING

The muscles in our body ease when we fall asleep, so if your throat muscle relaxes too much your breathing may be partially blocked, causing snores. Another reason for snoring might be allergies or asthma. As your breath becomes slightly blocked, the oxygen level in your blood drops resulting in your awakening.

  1. SLEEP APNEA

This point is slightly related to the one mentioned above, because it includes a drop in the blood’s oxygen level as well. Sleep apnea is when you wake up suddenly with the feeling that you were out of breath, and this is a condition in which your breathing slows/stops while you’re asleep. This occurs if your brain doesn’t send the right signals, and a cure for this is usually prescribed by a doctor, but a possible solution is a CPAP machine, which is a mask that widens your airways as you sleep. (I am in no way authorized to recommend solutions, i’m just stating what I know to give you an idea of how the cure will look like)

  1. LIGHT SLEEP TRIGGERS

As you most probably know, we go through 1, 2, 3, 4 and REM stages in our sleep (some studies lump stage 3 and 4 together) Stage 1 is when your sleep is the lightest, which is most likely to be the time your sleep is disturbed in the middle of the night. The trigger that wakes you up might be very simple to the extent that you might not notice what woke you up in the first place. Some examples of triggers are a door slam, car lights through your window, hot weather, cold weather, noise and bright light.

  1. RESTLESS LEGS SYNDROME

RLS is basically the uncontrollable urge to move your legs when you’re at rest, which means sleep. This factor is usually hereditary, so a member of your family will most probably have the same syndrome. Doctors usually give you medications or inform you of things to do to reduce this urge.

Now that I’ve summed up some causes, let me gift you with some tips to have a peaceful night of sleep.

  • Take a warm bath before bed, this will help if you have a fairly low case of RLS.
  • Eat a small snack before bed, but make sure to keep it light since eating too much before bed will make you stay up.
  • Reflect on your day and make sure to get anything that’s bothering you out of your mind before bed by maybe talking to someone about it.
  • Regulate the temperature in your room and adjust the lights to suit your comfort.
  • Try your best to sleep and wake up at the same time everyday. This will train your body to rest at a certain time.
  • Avoid excessively long naps throughout the day.
  • Focus on trying to stay awake, and yes I know, sounds stupid but a study showed that if you think about trying to stay awake you’ll actually fall asleep faster because the stress and anxiety resulting from you pressuring yourself to fall asleep will keep you awake.

That’s it you guys! I hope this was by any means helpful and I hope you all have a goodnight’s sleep and wake up feeling energized and happy!

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