How Do I Know If I Suffer From Anxiety
It can be difficult to sort out whats normal and what may be considered anxiety, but you may want to talk to your doctor about anxiety if any of the following statements pertain to you:
- Your worry and emotions are so strong that they get in the way of your ability to focus.
- You find yourself lying awake and agitated about money problems, relationship issues, or nothing in particular.
- You suffer from a constant feeling of tension in your muscles and indigestion in your belly.
- A social event causes days or even weeks of discomfort and obsessive focus on all that could go wrong.
- You blush, sweat, stammer, blink a lot, tremble, or have difficulty speaking to others in public.
- You live in fear about when, where and how your next panic attack will happen.
- You have suffered a violent encounter in the past that regularly comes to mind and triggers heavy emotions.
- You are constantly self-judging and often think about the things you have done wrong or couldve done better.
- You are so regimented that any minor disruption to your schedule or preferences sets you into full panic mode.
You may seek treatment for anxiety and sleep disorder from a primary physician, mental health doctor, or sleep clinic.
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Keep The Bedroom Chilled And Completely Dark
We may want to consider keeping our bedroom just a tad cooler than we like, and leaving any nightstand lights off.
Ensure your bedroom is quiet, comfortable, ventilated, dark and cool, says Elaine Slater, a psychologist and psychotherapeutic counselor. Even a small amount of light in your bedroom can disrupt the production of melatonin and overall sleep.
Cant Sleep Due To Anxiety 7 Tips From An Insomnia Expert
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During this time of extreme uncertainty, many of us are struggling to sleep. If youre like me, you fall asleep easily but wake up at about 3am thinking of whatever was on your mind during the day, or perhaps your subconscious decides to think about the state of the world. You might also struggle with falling asleep at all.;
Trust us, youre not alone. So many of you have reached out about sleep struggles. Weve taken your questions and given them directly to Dr. Leah Farrell-Carnahan, a personal friend, trusted insomnia expert, and licensed clinical psychologist and founder and director of Atlanta CBT. Dr. Farrell-Carnahan has helped hundreds of people who struggle with insomnia, so if you cant sleep due to anxiety, this article is for you!
Please note that Dr. Farrell-Carnahan gives general advice, which is NOT meant to replace any specific advice or recommendations you have been given from your personal healthcare providers. It is always a good idea to consult with your personal physician if you notice that you are having trouble sleeping.
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What Is Sleep Anxiety
Sleep anxiety is fear or worry about going to sleep. You may be apprehensive about not falling asleep or not being able to stay asleep. Some people also have a distinct phobia, or fear, about sleep called somniphobia. They may think something bad will happen to them while they sleep, or that they shouldnt sleep because they need to stay alert and watchful.
Sleep and psychiatric disorders, such as anxiety, often go hand in hand. If you have an anxiety disorder, you may find it hard to fall asleep or stay asleep. Similarly, if you have a sleep disorder, you might feel anxious or fearful before bed because youre afraid you wont get the rest you need. One condition usually makes the other worse, so it can feel like a never-ending cycle.
Which Comes First The Chicken Or The Egg
Before we get into the possible treatment of anxiety and recommendations for better sleep, it is important to distinguish which comes first; the anxiety or the sleep disturbance? That is usually the main problem in the very diagnosis of anxiety or a sleep disorder.
As mentioned in the introduction, anxiety can cause sleep problems, and sleep problems can cause anxiety.
This means that there is a direct connection and causative relationship between anxiety and sleep problems.
Studies;have shown that sleep disturbances directly co-occur with psychological disorders, like anxiety and depression.
Therefore, you as a patient need to discuss both of these issues with your doctor. You also need to treat both of them to see some relief to your mental health as well as improvement in the quality of your sleep.
If left untreated, anxiety, as well as disrupted sleep, can have harmful effects on your life; they can cause cardiovascular problems, diabetes and stroke among others.
Arianna Huffington Founder And Ceo Of Thrive Global Co
Not sleeping? Its not just you. At the start of 2020, Americans were already sleep-deprived, with 40% getting less than seven hours of shut-eye per night. Add a global pandemic, a 24/7 news cycle, and the mounting anxiety and restlessness that go along with both, and its no wonder were all feeling like zombies. In fact, its being called coronasomnia. Arianna Huffington, founder and CEO of Thrive Global, co-founder of The Huffington Post, and author of, most recently, The Sleep Revolution, gives us her tried-and-true tips for quieting our minds and successfully slipping off to dreamland.
After more than a year of living through a global pandemic, when the 24-hour news cycle is swirling constantly, many of us arent sleeping very well. Is this to be expected given everything going on around us? How can we quiet the mind and still the anxiety in order to get some good sleep?
Its completely expected. A good nights sleep has never been harder to come by. Even coming into , Americans were already sleep-deprived. And now the pandemic and a 24/7 news cycle has taken such a toll on our sleep that its being called coronasomnia.
In these unstructured times, we can quiet the mind and reduce anxiety by setting boundaries. One way is to set a news cutoff time at the end of the day, which can help us to not onlyput stressful news into perspective, but also to get a recharging nights sleep for the next day.;
Whats one thing everyone can do to get better sleep?
The Holistic Approach To Anxiety At Night
Alternative approaches, however, can offer a much more comprehensive and effective strategy, which can be especially helpful for issues like this.
Here are the main components to a more big-picture approach to anxiety at night & sleep issues:
These are the steps that I choose to focus on long before I wind up resorting to pharmaceutical meds. For the record Im not against using pharmaceuticals altogether. I just dont think they should be our first step in addressing most issues. Sometimes theyre necessary, and sometimes they can be used to relieve an acute issue while you work on the slower root cause healing process.
Side note that has to be said: Im a huge advocate of taking charge of your health and educating yourself from a range of experts . That being said, everyones situation is unique, so be sure to consult with a trusted healthcare provider before doing anything considered medical for your anxiety at night, like supplements or herbs.
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How Does Zopiclone Pill Work To Treat Insomnia
- Zopiclone is a hypnotic, anxiolytic, and myorelaxant with therapeutic effects . Because zolpidem and benzodiazepines bind to the same locations on GABA-containing immune cells, the chemicals action is improved.
- This is why benzodiazepines and zopiclone have similar pharmacology. But, zopiclone tablets are less likely to cause adverse reactions and have a higher tolerance, especially in elderly individuals who are more sensitive.
- Zopiclone includes hypnotic ingredients that help with alcohol dependence and promote restful sleep. Gamma-aminobutyric acid is a substance that prevents neurons in the brain from interacting with each other.
- Insomnia, on the other hand, causes this molecule to become inactive or to operate too slowly. Zopiclone works by increasing GABA levels in the brain, resulting in a calmer central nervous and easier sleep.
- It also decreases the number of nighttime awakenings while improving the length of time that sufferers sleep. This helps them have a better nights sleep.
- Zopiclone, also known by the brand names Zolpidem and Zimovane, is a non-benzodiazepine hypnotic medicine with a Z classification. It is used to treat insomnia in the short term or to develop a healthy resting routine.
- It does, however, act on the brain like benzodiazepines. however, distinct in that it is solely used as a sleeping aid. Although Zopiclone has a relaxing influence that lasts up to 6 hours, it frequently leaves users weary and hungover the next day.
Prepare For The Next Day
Part of what can keep you up at night is worry and nervousness regarding the following day. To eliminate some of the stress, it can be helpful to be more prepared for the next day. For example, you may find it anxiety-reducing to layout your clothes in advance, write a list of to-dos, or pack up your things for work so they’re ready to go. You can make these preparations a part of your before-bed routine.
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How To Minimize Anxiety And Maximize Sleep
To get to sleep more easily, you can try changing some of your pre-sleep habits to decrease your mental and physical stress levels. Habit-changing takes time and persistence, but if you stick to these changes, you will find yourself adapting and feeling less anxious overall in no time.
Avoiding the anxiety that keeps you from getting the sleep you need can be difficult, but following the above all-natural and healthy techniques may be all that you require taking back control over your sleep schedule.
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Why Does It Happen At Night
Anxiety is a normal human emotion characterized by feelings of nervousness and worry. You may find yourself experiencing anxiety during stressful situations, such as a first date or job interview.
Sometimes, though, anxiety may linger around for longer than usual. When this happens, it can interfere with your daily and nightly life.
One of the most common times when people experience anxiety is at night. Many clinical trials have found that sleep deprivation can be a trigger for anxiety. Historically, research also suggests anxiety disorders are associated with reduced sleep quality.
Treating your nighttime anxiety and addressing your sleep issues are important steps in improving your quality of life.
There are manysymptoms of anxiety. Everyone experiences anxiety differently. Symptoms can happen anytime of the day, morning, or night. Common symptoms of anxiety include:
- feelings of nervousness, restlessness, or worry
- trouble falling asleep or staying asleep
- gastrointestinal problems
Another symptom a person with anxiety may also experience is a panic attack. A panic attack is an episode of extreme and intense fear, often accompanied by physical manifestations. The common symptoms of a panic attack include:
- a sense of impending doom
- increased heart rate and chest pains
- shortness of breath and throat tightness
- sweating, chills, and hot flashes
- dizziness or lightheadedness
- a feeling of detachment, or like nothing is real
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Never Get In Bed When You Are Not Sleepy
Dr. Farrell-Carnahan is adamant about this. She explains that even if you have imposed a bedtime upon yourself, you shouldnt get into bed if you arent sleepy to begin with. Sometimes, at bedtime, we feel tired but wired, and getting in bed at those times will actually be more hurtful than helpful.;
Dr. Farrell-Carnahan defines sleepy as that feeling when you are about to nod off. That is when you want to get into bed, not before.
Her reasoning behind this is that we all need time to wind down and allow the conditions for sleepiness to come.;
Some of us may be watching the news or catching up on social mediain so doing, we rob ourselves of the wind down time we need.
So put the phone down and wait until you start to nod off before actually peeling back those covers and climbing into bed. This will minimize the need to mindlessly check one more time because you just arent that sleepy.
Journaling For Sleep Anxiety
Journaling is a great way to get thoughts and worries out onto paper. The practice has been around for thousands of years and researchers are continually uncovering more behind why it can work so well.;
This study found people who journaled had less mental stress and generally felt better. Participants also had less anxiety, less depression, and more resilience. Journaling along with other natural therapies, like healthy eating was also found to reduce pain and the need for anxiety medication .
In another study researchers compared a group of people who wrote a to-do list compared to a group that recorded completed tasks. The group that wrote a nightly to-do list for the next day fell asleep significantly faster, while the other group had more trouble sleeping. Setting a plan in place for later helps our brain feel more relaxed so anxiety at night is reduced, and sleep comes easier.;;
There are a number of journaling apps you can try, including ones with prompts for working through anxiety.
Personal experience: I havent really ever journaled regularly, but I am a big fan of writing things down to get them off my mind to lower my anxiety and stress. I use Notion to record and organize all of my random notes, thoughts, to-dos, and so on. Its kind of a digital version of a bullet journal for me. I even have a section for the occasional journal/rant-type entry for when I just need to get something off my chest thats banging around in my brain like rocks in a dryer.
Check If You Have Insomnia
You have insomnia if you regularly:
- find it hard to go to sleep
- wake up several times during the night
- lie awake at night
- wake up early and cannot go back to sleep
- still feel tired after waking up
- find it hard to nap during the day even though you’re tired
- feel tired and irritable during the day
- find it difficult to concentrate during the day because you’re tired
If you have insomnia for a short time its called short-term insomnia. Insomnia that lasts 3 months or longer is called long-term insomnia.
When Is The Best Time To Discuss My Child’s Fears
Acknowledge that being scared or worried is normal and that all people feel scared or worried sometimes. Let your child know that they can always talk to you about things they feel worried about and together you can work out a solution. Try discussing fear during the day . Talk about how they can be less scared at night and reassure them that their bedroom is a safe place. Get them to practice getting rid of their fears by imagining their favourite colour as a big cloud that pushes ‘fear’ away or making fear into a big balloon that they can prick with a pin to make disappear.
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What Are The Types Of Anxiety Disorders
Anxiety is a core element of a number of specific disorders, although not all are categorized strictly as anxiety disorders.
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder : People with GAD have significant, looming worries about many different things that can cause an overarching sense of anxiety.
- Panic Disorder: Extremely intense episodes of fear, known as panic attacks, that usually last for a few minutes at a time are the defining feature of Panic Disorder.
- Social Anxiety Disorder: This disorder involves an extreme fear of social settings and potential embarrassment in front of other people.
- Specific Phobias: Specific phobias are intense fears caused by particular triggers. Some of the most common specific phobias include agoraphobia and separation anxiety.
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder : In OCD, a person obsesses about an issue in a negative way such that it provokes anxiety, and this causes a compulsion, which is their attempt to control or eliminate that anxiety. Compulsions are repeated ritually and can directly impact everyday activities.
- Post-traumatic Stress Disorder : This condition can arise after a person is exposed to a painful or disturbing situation. People with PTSD may relive the stressful event, feel on-edge, and have potentially debilitating anxiety.
‘i Have Sleep Anxiety
Culture writer Anna Hart lay awake panic-ridden in the early hours so frequently that even the prospect of bedtime became stressful
Ive always been crap at sleep. As a kid, I would read Roald Dahl books under the covers late into the night, trying to stave off those dark moments when, bereft of bedside lamp and Matilda, I was left alone and expected to nod off. Because nodding off or dozing just never seemed to work out for me.
Night was a time of anxiety for my hot little head, when I would fret about my school science project, wince over stupid things I had said to a friend, or wonder if my parents were secretly spies…
Two decades on, my worries have changed but not my ability to worry. My husband, Sean, looks forward to going to bed, a feeling as alien to me as eagerly anticipating a smear test. Hell drift straight off, leaving me alone to my crazy thoughts.
My brain still thinks the moment my head hits the pillow is just the time to remind me of those emails I meant to send, question what Im doing with my career and wonder if the worlds going to end.
And now, as an adult with responsibilities, like a job and a flat and a husband, the fear of failing to fall asleep at night and waking up foggy, rumpled and generally unfit for purpose, has made the prospect of sleep itself stressful.
Sleep is like the worst sort of boyfriend: the more desperately you want it, the less likely it is to grace you with its presence.
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