5 Unusual Reasons That May Explain Your Sleep Problems

a woman sleeping

Individuals who feel they sleep well may still be troubled by extreme daytime sleepiness due to a number of different underlying medical illnesses. A sleep disorder may be an adverse effect of therapy to treat the issue or a symptom of a health issue. The stress of chronic illness may also lead to daytime drowsiness and insomnia.

Some conditions typically associated with sleep issues include thyroid disease, respiratory issues, neurological disorders, mental health issues, kidney disease, musculoskeletal disorders, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and heartburn. Besides these, some over-the-counter medications used to treat these and other health issues may impair the quantity and quality of sleep.

Here, we discuss some unusual reasons that may explain your sleep problems:

1. Stress

Mental health affects people daily. Responsibilities, life, and work — the day-to-day isn’t easy. If you’re feeling the pressure during the daytime, there’s a decent chance it’s also negatively impacting your sleep.

Following are some unusual facts that may surprise you when it comes to the association between sleep and stress:

It’s a cycle

A stressful day causes restless sleep. Consequently, restless sleep leads to a sleepy morning. A sleepy morning increases your stress levels and the likelihood of another rough sleep. The vicious cycle of sleep and stress can be difficult to break. However, with a few days of relaxation, your body can break the cycle and readjust.

Fight or flight

Stress can activate your automatic nervous system — your fight or flight response. This bodily function releases stress-related hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol, increasing your blood flow and heart rate, which isn’t exactly a benefit when you’re trying to sleep.

There are various ways to reduce daily stress, including:

  • Reducing your stress triggers
  • Avoiding nicotine
  • Meditation
  • Exercise

If your stress feels unimaginable, don’t hesitate to talk to a healthcare professional. Taking care of your mental health is paramount and something you shouldn’t be afraid of discussing. Once you’re aware of your stressors, you can look forward to brighter mornings and more restful nights.

a person lying on bed while holding eyeglasses

2. Quality of mattress

What you sleep on has a lot to do with how you sleep. This means your mattress matters a lot.

If getting sufficient sleep has been difficult, it might be time to assess your mattress. The following are two factors you should think about:


If you sweat throughout the night, staying asleep will become impossible. However, plenty of things can help if finding a comfortable temperature is difficult for you. For example, you may benefit from more breathable sheets, a cooling mattress protector, or a mattress made with heat-resistant materials — instead of trapping heat beneath you, they move it away from your mattress.


Mattress support preferences and firmness are highly personalized. Your health, weight, and sleeping position can all play a role when deciding on mattress firmness. If you usually wake up sore and achy, replacing your mattress would be a good idea. Consider a more supportive option. Some mattresses come with a unique foam shaping system and gel pods, which allow you to cradle your body while offering optimal spinal alignment to help you steer clear of morning pains and aches.

A bad mattress that doesn’t provide comfort or support you properly can considerably affect your sleep quality.

a woman lying on a bed


3. Diet

From your immune system to your mood, what you eat affects almost every part of your life — and yes, that comprises your sleep. If you’re wide awake at night or snoozing through your alarms every morning, you should make some dietary changes. Following are some suggestions on what kind of changes you need to make:

Be mindful of caffeine and alcohol intake

While most Americans begin their day with a cup of coffee, consuming caffeine in the evening isn’t advisable as it can make falling asleep very tough. On the other hand, alcohol may make you sleepy. However, after an evening of drinking, this may negatively affect your sleep quality.

Eat a balanced diet

There’s a correlation between sleep problems and vitamin deficiencies. In addition, high-carb meals may harm your rest, and sugary foods can cause lower-quality, delayed sleep when you finally drift off.

Stay away from midnight snacks

If you love eating close to bedtime, you need to get rid of this habit as it can affect your sleep quality — it may also lead to heartburn and gastrointestinal discomfort. Plus, there’s a good chance you’ll be waking up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom.

4. Lifestyle

What’s your normal day like? From the second you wake up to the moment you go to sleep at night, the choices you make can have a massive impact on your sleep quality.

Your sleep disruptions may be related to the following lifestyle choices:

Sleep schedule disorder

If you don’t sleep at least seven hours a day, you’re probably knee-deep in sleep debt. While taking midday naps or sleeping in some mornings can help replenish your energy, it can also contribute to a disordered sleep schedule. So, adopt a more consistent schedule and adjust your sleep habits. This might just be your ticket to sweet dreams every night.

a woman covering her face with blanket

Electronic devices

While it can feel hard to disconnect, spending a lot of time on your devices could cause sleep deprivation. There’s a correlation between sleep problems and illuminated screens. Blue light can prevent you from getting sufficient sleep by throwing off your circadian rhythm. Yes, it won’t be easy, but avoiding screen time while in or before bed could significantly improve your sleep.

Evening workouts

There’s no doubt that physical activity is a pillar of a healthy lifestyle. However, working out late at night can elevate your heart rate when you should be preparing for a good sleep. If you’re looking to get sufficient, high-quality sleep, move your workout a few hours earlier.

5. Sleep bruxism

Sleep bruxism is a sleep-related movement disorder that doesn’t just affect your quality of sleep but also your oral health. People who grind/clench their teeth during sleep have a higher chance of other sleep disorders like sleep apnea and snoring.

Long-term consequences of sleep bruxism may include substantial harm to the teeth. Teeth may become more mobile, eroded, and painful. Dental implants, fillings, and crowns can also become damaged.

Teeth grinding may amplify the risk of issues with the joint that connects the skull and the lower jaw, commonly referred to as the TMJ (temporomandibular joint). TMJ issues can lead to locking of the jaw, clicking/popping noises, chronic jaw pain, difficulty chewing, as well as other complications.

Not everyone with sleep bruxism will have serious effects. The extent of long-term consequences and symptoms depend on how severe the grinding is, the person’s diet, the alignment of their teeth, and whether they have other conditions that may affect the teeth, such as GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease).

Nighttime teeth grinding may also affect a bed partner. The noise from grinding and clenching can be bothersome, making it difficult for a person sharing the bed to fall or stay asleep as long as they would like.

This is where Clear Comfort Night Guards’ dentist-recommended night guards can help.

With years of experience in the dental industry, our dental lab understands that teeth grinding is a common issue that most people aren’t even aware of. While grinding your teeth may lead to sleep issues and cause oral damage, it can easily be taken care of by buying the best night teeth guards from us.

Visit our website for more information on our teeth grinding guard online!

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