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Why is it difficult for me to sleep even after an exhausting day?

Dr. Manoj Kutteri
May 10, 2022

In this current epoch, sleep has become an elusive thing for many of us. We toss and turn desperately to wind down our brain and body to rest. Some of you would have drowned yourself into the sleeping pills as your recourse but still weren’t able to put you down to sleep. Even after an exhausting day, do you find it difficult to sleep? Have you ever wondered why? There could be many reasons to track down. The needed action can only be taken once we figure out the cause.

Before we understand what makes you feel insomniac, we need to know that our body functions rhythmically. When we sleep and wake up – are regulated by our biological clock that is approximately 24 hours. In this article, we will know how to set a perfect sleep rhythm. So let’s dive in.

What is Circadian Rhythm?

The homeostatic physiology of circadian rhythm governs our sleep. Circadian rhythm is an internal clock that works with the battery of light changes in the environment. Just like how we work around the clock in a day, our body is very much conditioned to work in sync with the rhythm of the clock. It controls all the activities in the system-synthesizing, eliminating, repairing, metabolism, immune regulation and mental health. This biological clock is controlled by a master clock “suprachiasmatic nucleus” that is located in the hypothalamus of our brain.

Have you ever wondered why we always sleep during the night, not during the day? It is because of this master clock which is sensitive to light, that sends signals to keep you alert during the day. As the night falls, the master clock initiates the production of a hormone called melatonin that promotes sleep. This is how our body maintains a proper sleep-wake cycle. 

What can disrupt circadian rhythm?

If you find your sleep pattern to be disturbed, it can be attributed to the misalignment of your circadian rhythm. The misalignment can be caused due to both internal factors such as age, genes, medical condition and external factors like hectic work shifts, changes in the time zones, changes in the sleep routine, menopause, and some medications.

Techniques that help you get proper sleep

Increase your melatonin production

Melatonin is a natural hormone that is produced by our endocrine pineal gland from the precursor serotonin. Melatonin production rises at night and falls during the day. In order to keep the production balanced, we have to soak ourselves in the sunlight for at least half an hour which signals the brain to synthesize serotonin. This serotonin, in turn, converts to melatonin during the night. So it is essential for you to get the daylight, especially if you are primarily into indoor jobs.

Diet and supplements

We also get melatonin from certain foods, especially ones containing tryptophan, magnesium, calcium, and vitamin B6. If the intake of tryptophan is restricted, there is a significant reduction in the amount of melatonin. Some of the tryptophan-rich foods are eggs, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, soy, tofu, and some non-vegetarian sources like chicken and fish. The pineal gland contains high levels of Omega-6 and Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, any alteration in the balance of this could result in lowering of melatonin. Diet and nutrients modulate the fluctuating
melatonin level. 

Herbs to boost sleep

Apart from the dietary sources, there are also a few powerful herbs that help to improve our sleep quality such as Ashwagandha, Chamomile and St. John’s wort. RELAX AID, one of the most potent nutritional supplement from Atmantan Naturals that contains these crucial herbs which not only work as adaptogens, but also helps to calm down the nervous system and boost the production of sleep hormones, thereby managing your stress as well. These herbs also help to sensitize the serotonin receptors and promotes sound sleep and cognitive health.

Avoid caffeine

Caffeine has both stimulatory and inhibitory mechanisms affecting the levels of melatonin. One of the studies mentions that caffeine may hinder melatonin synthesis by inhibiting the catalysing enzymes and competing for the same liver enzymes. It is crucial to have a check on caffeine consumption.

Sleep set up

Before you hit the bed, try to limit the light and put down your electronic devices, as light may interfere with the normal functioning of the circadian rhythm, making it difficult for you to have some good sleep. Start dimming the lights to allow melatonin production to kick in.

Sync it up

When we wake up in the morning, our body needs some sunlight to kick start the body’s key functions. By syncing our internal body clock to natural hours of daylight, we can optimize our bodily functions in a better way. Also, having a consistent wake- up routine is the best way to synchronize our biological clocks, say the researchers. Physical activity and meditation

Cultivating a physical activity would help to improve the sleep quality. Exercise and sleep are directly related, and the impact of exercise or yoga on sleep quality is immense. It will naturally increase the release of the neurotransmitters like serotonin and reset the body clock. Our mind is no less than a monkey, preoccupied with thoughts, fears that make our sleep troublesome. When dealing with stress, your brain becomes hyper-focused on protecting you from it. Always try to have positive affirmations; journaling and meditation would help you acknowledge the worries and reduce the stress. It will help you to tackle things in a better way.

Seek an expert

Our sleep is a complex thing. If you think simple sleep remedies do not help, seek a proper wellness expert and get their guidance to address the actual problem and cause.

Sleep is such a crucial part of our physical and mental wellness. To be resilient enough to fight everyday stressors, we need to have a solid sound sleep. Most researchers say that lack of sleep can lead to an array of illnesses ranging from
heart attack to Alzheimer’s disease. Lifestyle and diet are the cornerstones for all significant issues, including sleep. Our experts in Atmantan would walk you through a healthy journey by understanding and rooting out the real hitch by various therapies and supplements.

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