5 Reasons Why a Student Might Have Trouble Sleeping

5 Reasons Why a Student Might Have Trouble Sleeping

Inability to sleep, also known as insomnia, can be caused by a variety of factors. Here are five reasons why a student may struggle to sleep:

Another Sleep Disorder

Restless legs syndrome (RLS) causes uncomfortable sensations in the legs, making it difficult for sufferers to fall asleep. RLS affects 5 to 10% of the population. Even when people with RLS receive treatment that reduces the desire to move their legs, sleepless nights are common. A small study published in 2013 discovered that people with RLS have abnormally high levels of glutamate, a neurotransmitter involved in arousal.

Chronic Pain

Any condition that causes you pain can, understandably, disrupt your sleep. Arthritis, low back pain, acid reflux, fibromyalgia, and a variety of other painful conditions can keep you awake at night. According to the National Sleep Foundation’s 2015 Sleep in America poll, only 36% of people with chronic pain say they consistently get good or very good sleep, while 66% of pain-free people say the same.

Clinical Depression Or Anxiety

Our daily ups and downs can certainly keep us awake at times, but if worries and concerns are consistently disrupting your sleep, an underlying anxiety disorder or clinical depression may be to blame. Worrying about sleep can make it even more difficult to sleep if you have an anxiety disorder.

According to WebMD, up to 80% of people suffering from depression have difficulty falling or staying asleep. Some people who are depressed may also sleep excessively. Many students sleep off during class as a result of not getting adequate sleep at night.

Certain Medications

Insomnia can be caused by medications used to treat conditions ranging from the common cold and high blood pressure to depression and asthma. Even if you know to stop drinking coffee early enough in the day to avoid interfering with bedtime, the Mayo Clinic reports that several over-the-counter medications contain caffeine or other stimulants. According to AARP, various prescription medications have been known to interfere with sleep by disrupting REM sleep, blocking melatonin production, tampering with the body’s natural levels of various enzymes, or interfering with other pathways.

Your Eating Patterns

Despite your best efforts, you may be sabotaging your own sleep by eating and drinking close to bedtime. Caffeine should be avoided at least six hours before going to bed, according to experts. Keep in mind that caffeine can be found in unexpected places, such as chocolate and even decaf coffee. While alcohol can help you fall asleep at first, it can also wake you up later in the night. A large, heavy meal too close to bedtime may be too taxing on your digestive system to allow you to sleep easily, or it may cause heartburn, which can certainly keep you awake.