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Does Too Much Sleep Cause Anxiety

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Anxiety Can Lead To Sleep Debt

Anxiety, Sleep, GABA, Serotonin & Why we Don’t Want too much Serotonin – Georgi Dinkov

One of the “Catch-22s” of sleep debt anxiety is that it’s not uncommon for the anxiety caused by sleep debt to lead to further sleep issues. Many people struggle to sleep with anxiety, and unfortunately even when that anxiety is caused by a lack of sleep it can be hard to turn off your mind and get rest. This is entirely normal, and something that you can reduce if you to manage your anxiety.

But keep this in mind when you’re going to sleep. If you have anxiety because of sleep debt and it disrupts your sleep causing more sleep debt, you’re not alone. This problem affects millions of those with sleep deprivation, and is something you will learn to work on in the future as you start to address both your sleep and your anxiety issues.

When sleep debt causes or contributes to anxiety, the solution is simple: take steps to get more sleep. If you’re able to go to sleep earlier then you can ease the problem by simply taking it upon yourself to get longer periods of sleep, and allowing that sleep to refresh your body.

Don’t expect this to stop your anxiety right away. Sleep debt issues tend to linger, and you may need to have a good night’s sleep for a few weeks in a row if you want to improve. Taking responsibility for your health and aiming to go to bed earlier can have a positive impact on your levels of anxiety.

  • Journal Writing
  • Changing Locations
  • Develop Routines
  • White “Noise”
  • Tackle Anxiety First

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You May Not Realize It But There Are Many Problems With Sleeping Too Much

In a world where so many of us are struggling to get enough sleep, the issue of sleeping too much might seem like a luxury problem.

Its actually not. Like insufficient sleep, oversleeping is a sign of disordered sleep. It may be connected to a mental health issue, such as depression. Its often a signal that a person is experiencing poor sleep quality, and it can be a sign of a clinical sleep disorder, including obstructive sleep apnea or narcolepsy.

Sleeping too much is linked with many of the same health risks as sleeping too little, including heart disease, metabolic problems such as diabetes and obesity, and cognitive issues including difficulty with memory. Similar to people who sleep too little, people who sleep too much have higher overall mortality risks.

We talk a lot about insufficient sleep, and the risks that a lack of sleep poses for physical health, mood, relationships, and performance. But oversleeping isnt something to ignore.

Hypersomnia is the clinical term for excessive sleeping and excessive sleepiness during the day. Like its counterpart, insomnia, hypersomnia has several core symptoms:

  • Sleeping for extended hours at night .
  • Difficulty waking up in the morning .
  • Trouble rising from bed and starting the day.
  • Grogginess on and off or consistently throughout the day.
  • Trouble concentrating.

How much sleep is too much?

How Fomo Can Cause Anxious Feelings

Another aspect of too much screen time for kids and adults alike involves the comparison trap that often befalls social media users. âIt is very easy for people to compare themselves to influencers on these apps, contributing to lower self-esteem and body image issues,â Hafeez explains. âWe are constantly fed pictures of people at their best or edited photos that can mask lifeâs less-than-perfect moments. This puts us at risk for an unhealthy social comparison and can make people feel that they are not doing well in comparison.â

Especially during this time of re-entry into post-pandemic life, the anxious feelings that come with seeing splashy vacation photos plastered all over your friendâs social feed can be difficult to deal with.

âIt is much easier for people to experience feelings such as âFOMO,â which is the fear of missing out, when screen time is being abused,â Hafeez tells Romper. âPeople love to update their followers on what they are doing by posting pictures or stories of who they are with and what they are doing, allowing others to feel excluded.â

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Set Aside Time For Winding Down

If youve been struggling with sleep anxiety, Dr. Fran Walfish, family and relationship psychotherapist, suggests creating a routine that winds you down and gets you in the mood for sleep. This can include things like dimming the lights, listening to calming music, or taking a warm bath.

Walfish also suggests opting for activities like light reading in place of a TV or computer, as using a screen can tend to rev up anxiety and excitatory thresholds versus relax and calm you down.

The best nighttime routine allows your mind and body time to slow down before you turn off the lights. Allot at least 30 minutes to take a bath, read a book, listen to a podcast, or play quiet music. These transition rituals can condition your brain to associate certain actions with preparing for sleep.

When To Seek Help

Bad Things That Happen to Your Health When You Sleep too ...

Anyone who finds themselves consistently sleeping 10 or more hours per night should see a doctor to determine why they are oversleeping. If oversleeping is the result of drinking too much alcohol or certain medications, cutting back or the elimination of these substances may help.

Of course, if oversleeping is due to the effects of prescription medication, the medication should not be stopped without the approval of a doctor. If oversleeping is caused by a health condition, managing that condition and practicing better sleep habits may help reduce the need to oversleep.

Also Check: Which Of The Following Statements About Sleep Apnea Is True

Potential Causes Of Oversleeping

Several factors could explain your need to oversleep. Sleep disorders and underlying health conditions can both contribute to sleeping too much, in addition to other causes.

Sleep Disorder

Common sleep disorders that lead to oversleeping include hypersomnia, sleep apnea, and narcolepsy. People with hypersomnia experience extreme sleepiness during the day, no matter how long they sleep at night or how frequently they nap.

People with sleep apnea experience temporary lapses in their breathing during sleep. These lapses result in loud snoring, choking, or gasping sounds that can wake them up and disrupt their sleep. Even if the person stays asleep, their sleep quality is reduced, leading to daytime tiredness and a desire to sleep more.

People with narcolepsy can experience sudden episodes of sleepiness during the day, suffer from excessive daytime sleepiness, and feel a need to oversleep as a result.

Underlying Health Condition

An underlying health condition, physical or mental, can also contribute to oversleeping. For example, hypothyroidism can lead to higher levels of exhaustion, fatigue, and a need to oversleep. People with hypothyroidism are nearly twice as likely to oversleep.

Sleep problems are also one of the main symptoms of depression. Some people suffer from insomnia and sleeping too little, while others suffer from hypersomnia and oversleeping. As with oversleeping in general, women who have depression are more likely to oversleep than men.

Other Causes

Is 10 Hours Of Sleep Too Much

How long you should sleep is dependent upon your age and individual health circumstances. 10 hours a night can be a healthy duration for children and teens, but for adults, experts with Johns Hopkins Medicine suggest a minimum of 7 hours a night and that regularly sleeping more than 9 hours is considered too much sleep.

Also Check: Does The Garmin Vivofit 4 Track Sleep

The Health Impact Of Oversleeping

Seeking to find the sleep sweet spot for optimal health, researchers have been busy recently looking at how different habits connect with physical and mental well-being. Several trends have emerged linking oversleeping with higher rates of mortality and disease as well as things like depression.

Research Links Longer Sleep Habits with:

  • Cognitive impairment
  • Higher all-cause mortality

Ways To Reduce Screen Time

What To Do If You Sleep Too Much? Ep329

Put your phone away from you two hours before bed and DO NOT check it again.

When you wake up, do not check your phone for at least 30 minutes. I know what you are thinking, that is impossible. No, its not. I have been doing it for years. This allows your brain to reset itself to the natural rhythm of the day. It can ease in and ease out of the day. Not hit the ground running and then come to a screeching halt. This tip alone will be a game changer for you.

Check Your Phone 1 Time Per Hour

Do not check it constantly. This is terrible for you. Get used to checking it in intervals and immediately taking care of whatever is there. This reduces the stress mode of your brain. When you take care of the business immediately, it frees up your brains space.

Perform 1 Task at a Time

Dont multi-task. Dr. Caroline Leaf calls it Milkshake Multi-tasking because it is like putting your brain in a blender. Science proves multi-tasking is not efficient in being the most productive. What is? Having one tab open at a time on your computer, not 10. Try it. Make a list of the things you need to get done. Then, go down the list one by one. Check them off as complete, and do not move on to the next one until the first one is complete.

Connect, Dont Compare.

Also Check: Does The Garmin Vivosmart 3 Track Sleep

Impaired Brain Functioning And Mental Health

Sleep plays an important role in the brain, as the brain clears out waste byproducts, balances neurotransmitters and processes memories at rest. At both short and long extremes, rest may have an effect on mood and mental health.

CognitionUsing data from the Lumosity brain-training platform, researchers found that cognitive performance on three different games all peaked when people sleptaround seven hours,Verified SourceNational Library of Medicine Worlds largest medical library, making biomedical data and information more accessible.View sourceworsening with more or less rest. Other studies have also foundmemory impairmentsVerified SourceNational Library of Medicine Worlds largest medical library, making biomedical data and information more accessible.View sourceandVerified SourceResearch GateNetwork service for scientific researchers that makes it easy for experts to find and share papers.View sourcewith longer sleep.

Degenerative DiseasesOther research indicates that getting too little or too much sleep may be tied to increased Alzheimers disease risk factors and a largeSpanish studyVerified SourceNational Library of Medicine Worlds largest medical library, making biomedical data and information more accessible.View sourcefound that long sleepers may be at increased risk of developing dementia.

Depression and Mental HealthOversleeping is considered a potential symptom of depression. While many people with depression report insomnia, about 15% tend to oversleep.

How To Prevent Oversleeping

Your sleep space also plays a major role in how well you sleep.

Firstly, review your mattress. An unsupportive bed can make it difficult to achieve quality rest at night, which could cause you to crave more sleep come morning. There are many high-value beds available that are built with specific design features for different types of sleepers to achieve the best rest possible.

Keeping your bedroom cool should also help prevent you from waking up because you feel too hot. For adults, the ideal temperature for sleeping is between 60 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit and between 66 and 70 for older adults.

Lastly, put the electronics away. While it may sound appealing to watch television in bed or look at your phone or tablet, these can make it harder to get shut-eye. Not only do these electronics keep your mind alert, but the blue light emitted from tech devices such as smartphones can suppress the production of melatonin, a sleep-inducing hormone.

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Get Out Of Bed When You Feel Restless

This one might feel contrary to what youd assume were good sleeping practices, but if you are feeling restless while trying to fall asleep, Dr. Farrell-Carnahan actually recommends getting out of bed.

She describes this feeling as being tired but wired, which is different from that nodding off/sleepy feeling you get when you are truly ready to fall asleep.

This advice goes for those of us who wake up in the middle of the night and cant fall back asleep. Dr. Farrell-Carnahan recommends getting out of bed if you wake up in the middle of the night and are restless.

Go to a dimly lit room and do something that holds your attention but isnt particularly activating. You could do a crossword puzzle, read a book, organize a junk drawer, write thank you notes, do a guided meditation, etc. Once you get sleepy, you can return to bed and try again. Repeat as necessary.

The way to prevent and cure this trap is to just not spend any time in your bed while restless. I would take it a step further and not do anything in your bed or bedroom besides sleep and sex. So, no folding laundry, no TV, no work, no studying. That is the gold standard. Do what you can with it.

Dr. Leah Farrell-Carnahan

There you have it! Your bed is for sleep and sex and nothing else. Get out of it when you feel restless!

How To Reverse Screen Time Effects

The Effects of Stress: What to do when stress becomes too ...

qEEG Brain Map

Brain Mapping shows you how your brain is performing. It is like an x-ray of brain performance. Once you see your operating mode, if you will, you can make even better decisions on how screens are impacting you and most likely it will increase your urgency to scale back screen time use. Let me tell you how and if you want to read more visit my blog post on what information a qEEG Brain Map gives you.

If you have ADHD or anxiety in the first place. Screen time is even worse for you than a person with optimal brain performance. ADHD is a brain that is running too slow. This is the bio-marker of ADHD, too much Theta slow brain speed. Here you can read it as a tired brain for sake of ease in this conversation.

If you struggle with anxiety, your brain is running too fast. It is using too much High Beta extra fast speed. Read, wired. Thus, in both of these patterns, the brain is already running in the mode that electronic screen time would increase. Therefore, your starting point is higher than average. This means screen time will have a larger impact on your brain even faster.

When you have a qEEG Brain Map performed, you can see how your brain is running and thus can make better decisions for yourself from an informed standpoint.

Read Also: Can Apple Watch Series 1 Track Sleep

Avoid Alcohol Before Sleep

Alcohol has become a popular coping mechanism during this pandemic mostly because there isnt much else to do, and getting pleasantly buzzed is a nice alternative to the fact that the world is mostly a raging dumpster fire.

However, and we know this is hard to hear, alcohol can interfere with the quality of your sleep. Ouch.

The bad news is that alcohol blocks REM sleep , meaning that you might feel drowsy and fall asleep quickly when you drink, but youre much less likely to fall into deep REM cycle sleep.

So have that glass of wine when the school day is over for your kids, but dont overindulge. Your sleep cycle will thank you.

Watch this video to hear about other activities, environments, or health conditions that could prevent you from getting good quality, restorative sleep.

A Natural Part Of The Fight

Anxiety is a natural reaction, and in small doses, its actually healthy. It is thought that some of the symptoms of anxiety including nausea developed to tell your brain that there was something dangerous or new in the vicinity so that you would make a smart decision regarding your next action.

When you are under stress but not facing any present danger, nausea can be especially distressing. When faced with stress, the body goes into the “fight or flight mode,” triggering the autonomic nervous system specifically activating the sympathetic nervous system and inhibiting the parasympathetic nervous system.

This action releases a hormone called epinephrine, which is often referred to as “adrenaline.” Additional stress may trigger other adrenal-related hormones. These hormones alter the stomach lining and food digestion take blood away from the digestive system and cause hyperventilation , dizziness, and more.

Stress can also cause muscle tension in your abdomen, and that added tension may squeeze your stomach in a way that leads to nausea. The gut also has an abundance of neurotransmitter receptors and is highly connected to the brain. It is possible that the way anxiety alters neurotransmitter levels in the brain may affect the gut as well.

Finally, during fight or flight, digestion is inhibited, which may affect how you process food and stomach acid and may lead to nausea.

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When To See Your Doctor About Too Much Sleep

If you find yourself feeling worn out on days after long nights of sleep, that could be a sign that you need to make an appointment with your doctor.

Dont ignore sleep problems. Feeling drained of energy after having more than adequate sleep could be a sign of conditions such as:

  • Anemia: a deficit of red blood cells
  • A thyroid problem
  • Sleep apnea
  • Insomnia

Sleep apnea and insomnia, common among people with chronic diseases, interfere with sound sleep and can worsen chronic health conditions, such as heart disease.

Sleeping too much puts you at greater risk of coronary heart disease, stroke and diabetes than sleeping too little.

If you wake up feeling exhausted, see your doctor. He or she may refer you to a sleep specialist to diagnose your specific problem and begin a course of treatment. Treating sleep-related conditions can significantly improve your chronic disease symptoms and quality of life.

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