How Can I Overcome Anxiety At Bedtime
If anxiety or disrupted sleep occurs often in your day-to-day life, these simple strategies can help you relax your body and mind and ease yourself into sleep. Changing your pre-sleep habits takes time and patience, but adapting to these changes may help you fall asleep with less sleep anxiety over time.;
Mind Mapping For Peace Of Mind
Similar to journaling, mind mapping is one of my favorite ways to declutter my thoughts. This practice blends the artistic/creative side of our brains with the logical side for a powerful organizing tool.;I do my mind mapping on paper so that its super easy to make connections in my jumble of thoughts. Its then easier to record or journal things in Notion.
Mind mapping uses the effective combination of pictures + words to get thoughts out onto paper. This decreases stress and anxiety to help our brains chill out and relax at night.
Personal experience: Mind mapping is always the first thing I turn to when my brain is completely overwhelmed. You can learn more in my blog post about how to use mind mapping for clarity, calm, and sleep anxiety.;
Settle Into Your Routines
When it comes to sleep, routine is your best friend.
- Eating at the same time every day helps regulate your circadian rhythms.
- Eating breakfast signals that its time for your body to wake up.
- Regular daytime exercise releases endorphins and decreases levels of cortisol, the hormone behind stress.
- Going to bed at the same time every night teaches your body to get sleepy around the same time.
But if you want to lessen nighttime anxiety, its still important to implement a specific nighttime routine.
You cant expect to go from 100 mph and then suddenly stop, Dr. Albers says. Instead, institute a 30-minute transition between bedtime and the rest of your day.
Try quiet, tech-free activities that reduce your cortisol levels and help ease you into sleep, such as:
- Taking a bath.
- Doing yoga stretches.
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How To Get The Sleep You Need
Is your anxiety making it hard to fall asleep? Establishing and committing to a healthy sleep schedule to provide quantity and healthy sleep hygiene to provide quality can really help. Here are nine more tips that can provide both:
1. Set a consistent sleep schedule
Once you have found your optimal bedtime, try your best to go to bed at that set time each night and to get up at the same time each morning, 365 days a year. As tempting as it may be, try not to sleep in on weekends; it will make it harder to wake up early on Monday morning because you will have reset your sleep cycle for a later wake up time.
2. Exercise early in the day
Set aside 20 to 30 minutes each day to exercise. Among other health benefits, it can help you sleep better. That being said, a workout right before bedtime could interfere with sleep. It’s best to exercise about five to six hours before bedtime.
3. Schedule meals appropriately
Try to be consistent with your meal times. If you wait too long to eat, you can trigger the nervous system, making it harder to sleep later. Also, try to schedule dinner at a time that leaves three hours between dinner and bedtime. If you have a problem with low blood sugar, you could try a small bedtime snack that is high in tryptophan, such as nuts, eggs, chicken, cottage cheese, or turkey.
4. Avoid caffeine, drugs, cigarettes, and alcohol
5. Create a relaxing bedtime routine
6. Create a sleep sanctuary
7. Don’t just lie there
8. Find a comfortable room temperature
Sleep Anxiety Tips: How To Calm Anxiety At Night
*This article is for general information purposes only and is not intended as medical or other professional advice. Visit the links within the text for sources. Casper has not independently verified the sources.;While some of us may toss and turn some nights, every night can be a restless night for others. If youve ever struggled with sleep anxiety, you know the feeling of anxiously watching the clock as you worry about not being able to fall asleep and waking up sleep-deprived the next day.;There are many statistics that reveal Americans struggle to sleep on a regular basis. As it turns out, anxiety and sleep are connected in a number of ways. Fifty percent of those who are sleep-deprived say that their anxiety impacts their ability to sleep at night.;Its important to understand how anxiety can affect your ability to get a good nights rest. This guide covers what sleep anxiety is, the effects of anxiety-induced sleep deprivation, and science-backed tips for decreasing anxious thoughts, as well as how to set yourself up for better sleep.
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How To Minimize Morning Anxiety
Many people with an anxiety disorder wake up feeling so worried and;full of dread that they just want to curl up under the covers and not face the day ahead. Try not to get discouraged, as there are a host of ways to minimize morning anxiety and wake up excited to start the new day.
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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Write Down Your Worries On Paper
According to Juanita Wells, director of clinical development at New Method Wellness, putting your thoughts down on paper can help us remain accountable to ourselves, our feelings, our purpose, and plan.
Instead of letting thoughts and to-dos swirl around in your brain, write them down so that your brain has a game plan for the following day. Wells says that writing down your anxious feelings, especially through stream-of-consciousness journaling , can help ease anxiety before bed.
In addition to calming pre-bedtime anxiety, research shows that journaling can also help you fall asleep more quickly. To get started journaling, just snuggle up with your notebook and some cozy pillows and let your thoughts take it away.
Dont Lie In Bed Awake
Lying awake will only give your brain time to start another firestorm of worries and anxieties.
If you cant fall asleep after 20 minutes or so, try restarting that bedtime routine.
Dont turn on bright lights, of course, but go do a low-stress activity like pet your cat or drink a cup of tea for a few minutes to help give your body another chance at winding down for the night.
Put Your Phone To Bed
Just say no to doomscrolling before bed the practice of taking in a barrage of bad news online. Give your phone a bedtime before your own, Dr. Albers advises.
And if anxiety keeps you awake or wakes you up, resist the temptation to break this rule and start using your phone. Your phones blue light signals your brain to turn back on, ultimately making it even harder to get to sleep.;
This is a No. 1 no-no for helping you fall back to sleep, Dr. Albers warns.
How To Stop Panic Attacks At Night
Getting a good nights sleep is essential for our health and wellbeing. Sleep promotes rest and relaxation, and gives us a chance to recuperate and let go of the stresses of the day. However, this isnt the case for the many individuals who struggle with panic attacks at night.
Here, we provide advice on how to cope with panic attacks at night, and give tips on how to reduce them.
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How To Calm Anxiety And Get Better Sleep
Although the impacts of anxiety disorders can be substantial, they are one of the most treatable mental health disorders. This doesnt mean that reducing anxiety is always simple, but there are treatments that can help.
Any person who has persistent or significant anxiety and/or sleeping problems should talk with a doctor who can best assess their situation and discuss the benefits and downsides of the potential treatment options in their case.
Cognitive behavioral therapy is a common treatment for anxiety disorders. It is a type of talk therapy that works to reorient negative thinking, and it has had success in decreasing anxiety. Studies have found that CBT can often reduce anxiety even in people who have insomnia. Addressing anxiety can pave the way for better sleep, but severe cases of insomnia may persist after CBT for anxiety. CBT for insomnia may be a useful next step in these cases.
Several different types of medications are approved to treat anxiety disorders including anti-anxiety drugs, antidepressants, and beta-blockers. These medications are intended to mitigate symptoms rather than cure the underlying anxiety.
Because of the multifaceted relationship between anxiety and sleep, getting better rest may help combat feelings of anxiety. Building healthy sleep habits can make going to bed a more pleasant experience and facilitate a consistent routine to enhance sleep.
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Tinnitus And Sleep Issues
Tinnitus can lead to high levels of stress and anxiety. Taken together, tinnitus and anxiety can lead to a host of sleep issues, and getting enough sleep may seem impossible. The experience of tinnitus during the night can make it very hard to fall asleep, and make you feel more stressed. Tinnitus often seems louder when the room is quiet, so the silence of your bedroom may make tinnitus even more intrusive.
As your anxiety levels rise, it becomes more and more difficult to fall asleep and get the rest you need. When you arent sleeping enough, youll feel even more anxious, and your tinnitus will be even more noticeable.
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Easing Anxiety Improves Sleep
The good news about anxiety and insomnia being so closely related is that, if you help one problem, you also help the other.
For example, Neubauer said, if you have an anxiety disorder, then getting treatment with cognitive therapy, meditation, or medication can have the indirect effect of improving sleep.
Short of getting treatment for an anxiety disorder, said Neubauer, there are ways people can, on their own, sleep better. For instance:
Practice relaxation techniques. Many approaches, such as nighttime meditation or yoga, can combat anxiety. Neubauer recommends you start by learning new relaxation techniques earlier in the day so youre not putting too much pressure on yourself before bedtime. Then, once youre comfortable with it, you can do it later in the day.
Get into a regular sleep routine. Going to bed and getting up at about the same time each day lets the bodys internal circadian clock work better. Getting up at odd hours can undermine that rhythm.
Schedule some idle time before bed. A common problem is that, when people get into bed, its the first time theyve had to ponder the day, Neubauer said. Try to sit down and think about the day before you get ready for sleep. Jot down any concerns on a piece of paper if you need to remember tasks for the next day. Dont use the time before bed to pay bills or other anxiety-inducing activity.
Proactively Reduce Stress During The Day
Sometimes our anxious thoughts are simply the remains of a stressful day.
Some of the best ways to deal with anxious thoughts at night are to reduce the stress you have to deal with during the day, says Benjamin Ritter, a coach and consultant specializing in personal and professional leadership development. You can avoid stressful people, be more open and honest about your feelings, and most importantly plan and strategize areas of your life. Reduce the number of decisions you have to make during the day and you’ll have more left over in your brain bank to deal with stress and anxiety at night.
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Teapigs Snooze Sleepy Tea
Everyone has heard that chamomile tea can help you sleep. Why? Well, its commonly called a mild tranquilizer and has an antioxidant called apigenin, which binds to specific receptors in your brain that may decrease anxiety and help make you sleepy.
This sleepy tea takes chamomile up a notch by also adding in lavender, another ingredient that has been used for centuries to help calm nerves. The tea is also naturally caffeine free and, well, its simply delicious.
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.
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Do A Bedroom Makeover
Another helpful trick is to make your bedroom a place for nothing but sleep. For some people living in small loft apartments, this might be tricky, but by putting up a divider or curtain, you may be able to simulate a similar separate room effect.
Regardless,;redecorating your bedroom;for a more comfortable and quiet environment can do wonders for your sleep health. Consider decluttering the room and regularly changing the;bedding;or adding a;rug;to make the space more appealing and comfortable.
If you come into your bedroom and still cant sleep, dont just lay there and wait for slumber to hit. Instead, get up after 15 minutes and work on some small projects until your body naturally feels sleepy.
How To Reduce Anxiety At Night: Our Familys Personal Experience
Needless to say we have tried many, many things in our attempt to get more sleep in our household, and I want to take the time to lay it all out and share what weve learned: the good, the bad, and in-between.
The good news? There are definitely some excellent, non-pharmaceutical options that often help. It often takes trial and error, but if you find the thing that works for you, its so worth it!
For each of the tools that I list below Ill explain what they are and how they are theorized to work, followed by my personal take and experience.
Youll notice as you read through them that some of these are more potent as an in-the-moment trick while others are more powerful when used over time to nudge the bodys natural mechanisms back to functionality.
Ill be honest with you its difficult to break out of the modern pill for every ill mindset where we expect instant results after popping a pill . Nevertheless, its worth checking ourselves in this regard, and being open-minded about a synergistic, slow, long-term approach that supports the intricate functioning of the human body.
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What Is The Relationship Between Anxiety And Sleep
Serious sleep disturbances, including insomnia, have long been recognized as a common symptom of anxiety disorders. People who are plagued with worry often ruminate about their concerns in bed, and this anxiety at night can keep them from falling asleep.
In fact, a state of mental hyperarousal, frequently marked by worry, has been identified as a key factor behind insomnia. People with anxiety disorders are inclined to have higher sleep reactivity, which means they are much more likely to have sleeping problems when facing stress.
Sleeping difficulties have been found for people with various types of anxiety including generalized anxiety disorder, OCD, and PTSD. In several studies, over 90% of people with PTSD associated with military combat have reported symptoms of insomnia.
Distress about falling asleep can itself complicate matters, creating a sleep anxiety that reinforces a persons sense of dread and preoccupation. These negative thoughts about going to bed, a type of anticipatory anxiety, can create challenges to healthy sleep schedules and routines.
At the same time, strong evidence indicates that sleeping problems are not only a symptom of anxiety. Instead, sleep deprivation can instigate or worsen anxiety disorders. Researchers have found that people who are prone to anxiety are especially sensitive to the effects of insufficient sleep, which can provoke symptoms of anxiety.