Stress and Sleep
In this article we will speak about the connection between sleep and stress and how the second one may worsen or even ruin the life of a stressed one. A good night rest is as important for organism as healthy food. Therefore, do not ignore sleepless nights. It’s very important to notice stressful condition at early stage and take effective steps to improve the condition.
Unfortunately it appears to be problematic for many people. The vast majority of adults have trouble sleeping at least once in seven days, more than half a few times. Therefore, this problem is widely spread and worthy of attention.
What Are Symptoms and Signs of Stress?
Physical and emotional disorganization leads straightforward to stress. This condition includes gloominess, disturbance, heart attack, stroke, blood pressure drops, weak immune system resistance and autoimmune illnesses. Stress manifestations include dermatological, digestion, neurological problems. In a word, it is difficult to say which part of human life stress does not affect indeed. It affects people of any age, record level of stress found in college students.
The most common symptoms of stress are represented in the table.
Bruxism (teeth grinding)
|Tumultuous dreams||Over fatigue||Gambling|
|Panic attacks||Excessive irritancy|
|Jaw, fists clenching||Difficulties in accepting new information||Uneasiness|
Quick mood changes
Drug usage, including over-the-counter ones
|Incapacity or trouble in making decisions||Tapping the floor||Excessive smoking|
|Thirst||Commit suicide thoughts||Grief feeling|
|Mistrustfulness||Uselessness sensation||Defensive behavior|
|Swallowing troubles||Absent interest to own appearance||Reduced sexual desire|
Getting into ludicrous situations or minor accidents
|Difficulties in communication||Frequent crying||Proneness to conflict|
|Burping||Hem and haw||Overloaded feeling|
Low working ability
|Inhibited thinking||Emotional outlet of anger or fear||Fibs, justifying for bad work|
|Obliviousness||Embarrassment||Loss of appetite or overweight|
|Frequent passage of urine||Shaft vision||Cynical humor|
|Aboulia (lack of will or initiative)||Social isolation|
How Does Stress Affect Your Sleep?
Stress and sleep are directly related. A stressed person can not have a good rest because of the disturbance feeling which prevents to relax and calm thoughts down. Chronic stress makes rest almost impossible kicks out the daily regime.
Many chemical processes happen in organism when a person can’t sleep. Body is boosting high levels of stress hormones (cortisol, norepinephrine, adrenaline). Without a proper rest the hormones level is enlarging. As a result, the next day a person feels even more exhausted. In this state it is much more difficult to fall asleep. The pick of stress hormones activity comes for afternoon and evening, just when the body is usually relaxing.
The more drained a stressed person feels, the less he/she is able to concentrate on working, life activity, relations with family and friends. Sleep deprivation causes significant worsening of life.
Prolonged stressful conditions lead to physical health problems. Therefore, it is very important to care of a good night rest. Today there are many methods which help to relax, throw worrying thoughts away and calm mind down.
The Sleep-Stress Cycle
Why people get stressed? Problems, difficult decisions, money, too many plans to do… No matter what the reason is, these thoughts rob sleeping time. The vicious sleep-stress cycle has begun. A stressed person does not have a proper night rest, the next day he/she feels even more tired and suffers from sleepless nights again.
Statistics report that people who sleep 5-7 hours every night are under potential stress attack (25.8%) than those who sleep 8 hours (6.5%). The sleep-stress cycle is a result of psychological and biological processes. Absence of good rest complicates concentration on important things during active part worsening stress condition. Also, bad night rest includes more stress hormones. As a result, less hormone-quieting chemicals are produced.
5 Ways Stress That Wreck Your Sleep
Everyone collapses with stress in a particular period of life. There are 5 ways stress that affect our sleep and health respectively:
- Psychologically strained condition prevents to have a rest that amount of hours which is enough for humans health. About half of stressed people awake at night, other half has troubles in the morning after torturous toss and turns and poor sleeping. The quantity of hours which are necessary for human’s organism recovery is quite individual. The aggregate figure is 7-9 hours, though scientific researches say that Americans would be healthier and happier if extra 1-1,5 hour would be added to rest time every night. A stressed person’s mind is too busy, therefore effective rest becomes unreal.
- Even if a stressed one falls asleep at night, those lucky hours do not bring recovery, because the quality of sleep is very low.
- Stress rises insomnia risk. Frequent sleepless conditions attack night rest entirely in 19% of cases. Each irritating factor rises up insomnia possibility.
- Brain never stops working. Normally, the nervous system turns a calmer regime at night, but not for a stress sufferer. The brain of over worried person remains hyperactive, keeping a person awaken all the time.
- A sufferer appears in vicious cycle: a person suffers from sleeplessness because of stress, then lack of rest makes him even more exhausted.
Tips for Managing Stress for Better Sleep
There are a few simple methods which might help you to overcome sleeplessness and calm mind down. Try one of those listed below:
- Aromatherapy. Scientists make sure that herbal aromas are being a helpful remedy in insomnia cases and perfectly relax the body.
- Drink herbal teas. Mint, lavender, marjoram, daisy or mix of herbs are very helpful for relaxation. Soft taste of herbs calms down body and mind and prepares organism to rest.
- Have a herbal bath. Herbals have unique relaxing features. Adding herbal infusion to warm bath helps to relax and abstract of negative thoughts.
- Practice relaxation techniques like yoga or meditation. Use deep breaths. Calming music enhances the effect, relaxes mind. Use hypnosis for stress management.
- Visit massage therapist. Those who know a few China methods of self-massage should not miss a chance to try it.
- Put thoughts in order. Try to write all negative ones on a sheet of paper and then throw it away or cut. Clean your mind completely.
- Train your consciousness. Imagine a beautiful landscape or remember the most pleasant moment in your life and concentrate on this picture. Do not let other thoughts attack your delight. Just enjoy the moment, give attention to details (sound of the ocean, laugh of a child, birds singing etc).
If all those methods do not help, think of using somnologist or psychiatric. Possibly the problem is much more serious than you might think.
Can Over-the-Counter Medications Help?
How to reduce stress independently? Unfortunately, there are no any non-prescription anxiety medical preparation. It is explained by affecting patient’s brain chemistry. This is a serious matter which can not happen without doctor’s control. It should be noted that light symptoms of disturbance still can be treated by over-the counter preparations, though consultation with a medical representative is still recommended. The example of safe remedies is represented below for awareness.
Passiflora incarnata (passion flower)
All plant parts are used for preparing of tea or infusions separately or in the mix with other herbs. For easy usage infusions should be poured to non alcoholic liquids. The plant helps to struggle with sleeplessness and insomnia. It is absolutely safe, efficient and can be used even for children.
Valeriana offiinalis (valerian root)
The root is used for preparing tea. Due to its bitter taste it is much more convenient to take the remedy in pills. The gel capsules are better for quick absorption. Valeriana makes sedative effect, successfully struggles with sleeplessness and nervousness. It does not have side effects, though combining it with other herbs of identical purpose is not suggested.
Hypericum Perforatum (St. John’s wort)
Its effect is similar to prescription drug Prozac. It exists in pills, dry substances match for making tea or infusion. St. John’s wort is known for its sedative and antidepressant effect and widely used for treatment of depressive disorder (light form) and anxiousness. It is safe and can be taken by kids and teenagers. The plant interacts with several groups of prescription drugs, so doctor’s consultation before the usage is recommended.
Withania Somnifera (winter cherry)
Indian addition is being sold in pills. It is used for treatment of depressive and anxious states and has no adverse symptoms. The remedy is not recommended for pregnant or nursing ladies and those who use monoamine oxidase inhibitors.
This is amino acid which exists in particular products (turkey, milk, pumpkin). During metabolization in the human organism it turns into the chemical tryptophan which increases producing of serotonin and melatonin in the brain cells. Both hormones respond for psyche stabilizing. 5-HTP is available in capsules which should be a part of daily food ration. Side effects are absent.
Ascorbic acid (vitamin C)
It is a well-known immune response modifier which naturally exists in fresh fruits and berries. Statistics had shown that a lack of this vitamin causes mind diseases and anxiousness. It is sold in form of pills and liquid. Is absolutely safe for usage and has minimal risk of overdosing.
One of necessary minerals is available in pills and is being a constant compound of multivitamins. It increases mental function.
The mineral which exists in food, but also comes in medical forms (pills, vitamins). It is needed for processing other ferments. Medical consultation before the usage is necessary, because overdosing makes a harmful effect which manifests in problematic minerals and vitamins absorption.
Vitamin B complex
It is available in pill forms which are useful for body functioning. Its lack is related to such conditions as manic-depressive illness, depressive disorder. Vitamin B complex successfully treats mental illness in combination with magnesium and zinc vitamin C.
Our online chemists ModafinilXL offers such effective drugs as Waklert, Nuvigil (the active ingredient of which is Armodafinil), Provigil (Modafinil). Nootropics help to avoid stress, calm down, organize your activity and rest correctly.
The newest pharmacological innovations are directed to struggle with depression, enhancing life energy, perfect mood and concentration. Psychostimulants are very popular nowadays among students, work addicted, businessmen and just fly-by-night guys. Try a new easy solution and forget about sleepless, depression and bad life.
When Do I Need Professional Help?
Difficult form of stress turn into serious diseases (like sleep apnea, sleep paralysis). Such conditions demand professional help. Do not experiment with your health. Hard headaches, vomiting, syncope are serious stress manifestations. Visit specialists immediately if any serious signs of disease occurred.