Do you struggle to fall asleep or stay asleep at night? Some patients who struggle with sleep do have primary insomnia, which means their poor sleep is the core health problem they are facing. However, for many people who struggle with sleep, sleeplessness is not the primary issue, but rather a symptom of a deeper, underlying health problem. Here are three of the most common underlying problems that contribute to sleep difficulties.
Do you have trouble finding a comfortable position to sleep in? Maybe you wake up in the middle of the night feeling uncomfortable and like you must shift into a different position. These feelings could be due to arthritis, a condition in which the cartilage in joints starts to wear away, leaving them swollen and achy. At its early stages, arthritis may not actually bother you too much during the day once you get moving and bending. But you'll feel stiff at night and in the early morning when you're not moving as much.
Consider putting a pain relieving cream on your major joints before bed, and see if that helps. Creams containing CBD may be particularly helpful as they relieve pain and promote mental relaxation.
Maybe a burning sensation in your chest keeps you up at night. You may feel some pain or soreness where your neck meets your chest, or perhaps further down. Try taking an antacid before bed, and sleep with your head a little more elevated. Avoid eating acidic foods, and don't eat too close to bedtime. If these measures don't make a difference, make an appointment with your doctor. You may have a more serious condition, such as GERD, that is causing your heartburn symptoms. Getting this discomfort under control will help you get better sleep.
It may sound alarming at first, but struggling to sleep at night can actually be a sign of diabetes. Are you getting up often because you have to urinate? Do you wake up sweaty at night? These can be signs that your body is struggling to regulate your blood sugar levels. A doctor can run blood tests to determine whether you have or may have diabetes. The sooner you find out, the sooner you can start managing your condition so the symptoms don't get worse or cause permanent damage.
When you're struggling with sleep, it is important to consider possible underlying causes. Talk to your doctor to learn more about these sleep problems.