As much as sleep is essential for maintaining overall health and well-being, most people in the USA do not experience adequate sleep. Whether it is because of health issues or the country’s fast-paced life, sleep issues have become highly common. Over one-third of adults in the USA report getting less than 7 hours of sleep in a day. It has also impacted their health, both physical and psychological, quality of life, and productivity.
Are you wondering why people in the USA are suffering from sleep problems? Dive right in to learn more about the pressing factors contributing to the increasing spread of sleeping disorders.
Why are sleeping problems becoming common in the USA?
A good night’s sleep can not only ensure you wake up feeling fresh but also increase your productivity and efficiency during the day. Similarly, facing sleep problems can hamper your life. If you want to get a hold of the problem, it is wise to know the cause first. Here are seven reasons that contribute to sleep problems in US citizens:
Whether you are a student or working, stress has unfortunately managed to become a significant part of people’s lives. It can invoke a profound reaction in your body that impacts the quality of sleep. About 48% of Americans feel that they trouble sleeping due to stress. If you are stressed due to a specific event, which causes a few sleepless nights, it can be acute insomnia. But, if the stressful period persists for long, it can lead to severe chronic insomnia. The inability to sleep might also contribute to stress, further making it harder to break the cycle of insomnia and stress.
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2. Busy lifestyle
Most people today lead a hectic lifestyle, consisting of unhealthy routines and habits, which increases insomnia. Many small things that you do during the day can impact the quality and quantity of sleep you get at night. Various lifestyle choices that are affecting the sleep cycle of people in the US are:
- Increased screen time
- Overindulgence in caffeine and alcohol
- Napping during the day
- Using bed for activities other than sleeping
- Eating spicy or heavy meals right before going to bed
3. Irregular sleep schedule
Ideally, your body’s internal clock, which is also called the circadian rhythm, follows the pattern of day and night. But, in reality, the simple design that people follow is much different than this. It causes misalignment to the circadian rhythm and leads to sleep issues. It can happen in the case of jet lag and even shift work. If you’ve been pulling all-nighters to catch up on pending work or pushing your sleep time on account of social obligations, it may disrupt the sleep cycle. While most people don’t realize it, an inconsistent sleep schedule can become the reason for severe insomnia issues.
4. Physical issues
Suffering from physical distress, pain, or injury can also be the reason behind sleepless nights. Any condition that induces pain, like arthritis or sclerosis, can affect your sleep by making it difficult to lie in bed. Dwelling on the pain while you wait for sleep can also amplify it. Other underlying health conditions like diabetes may also contribute to sleep disorders. With Type 2 diabetes, you also experience pain from peripheral neuropathy, rapid blood sugar changes, and frequent hydration and urination, which affects your sleep. As per a study, there is a direct correlation between diabetes and sleep disturbances.
5. Mental health troubles
Another common reason responsible for increasing sleep issues in the citizens is psychological issues. Mental health illnesses like depression and anxiety may give rise to severe sleeping disorders. It is estimated that around 40% of people with insomnia are suffering from a mental health disorder. These conditions are responsible for inducing negative thoughts, disrupting your peace of mind, and causing sleep disturbance.
6. Taking specific medicines
Not being able to sleep comfortably at night can also be the side-effect of a new medication. There are many medications like antidepressants, anti-asthma medications, and blood pressure drugs that can have side-effects, including problems while sleeping or even potential overdose. Other drugs may also lead to daytime drowsiness, which can hamper the entire sleep schedule. It’s not just taking these medicines, but even when you stop, they can induce withdrawal symptoms that create difficulty sleeping.
7. Neurological problems
Suffering from neurodegenerative and neurodevelopmental problems can increase the risk of sleep disorders, such as insomnia. Neurological problems affect your brain, but neurodegenerative disorders like dementia or Alzheimers can also throw off the circadian rhythm and perception that affects the sleep-wake cycle. On the other hand, neurodevelopmental issues such as ADHD lead to hyperarousal, making it challenging to get the required amount of sleep.
Much like food, water, and air, you also need sufficient sleep to function correctly. But your busy schedule, underlying health conditions, or even your lifestyle choices can affect the sleep cycle. If you are unable to fall asleep, you must carefully identify the reason behind your sleepless nights and then make changes in your life to get adequate sleep each night.