It's 1 a.m. My eyes track lazily across my phone screen as I hop from articles about the pandemic and global warming to one-dish pasta recipes and funny cat compilation videos. I check the time again: 2.30 a.m. I try closing my eyes in the hope that I'll nod off, but I can’t stop running through the next day's To-Do List. The more time goes by, the more restless I become.
Many of us struggle to get enough sleep each night. But recent research has shown that the global pandemic is keeping even more people up at night than normal. Reports of "coronasomnia" have swept across the world, with many complaining of sleeplessness and disturbing dreams.
Difficulties sleeping can be caused by several factors including anxiety, stress and disrupted routines. It's safe to say that since the start of the pandemic, people have been feeling more tense. As some struggled to home school their kids, others were fighting with their roommates over the last morsel of Wi-Fi. Add to that the looming threat of a contagious virus and rising unemployment rates, and it's no wonder so many of us fail to get our regular "40 winks."
Sleep is vital to both our physical and mental health. Prolonged sleeplessness can cause a whole host of emotional issues from lack of focus and productivity to irritability and depression. Not to mention the serious physical side effects of insomnia, including high blood pressure, diabetes, and damaged immune systems.
Sleep gives us time to recharge and heal. But lost sleep can't be fixed with a quick power nap or the occasional lie-in. Discover how to develop a sleep routine that works in our latest episode of our Mind Tools' Minutes video series. And be sure to keep an eye out for future episodes every Wednesday. In the meantime, head over to our YouTube channel to see the last two episodes in the Stress and Well-Being series.
Do you have trouble sleeping? Has lockdown taken a toll on your sleep schedule? Share your experiences and tips in the comments section, below.
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"Mental health issues are often based on the tension between what one has achieved and what one has the potential to become." - Clive Lewis
"Running into that thing makes our anxiety spike – and we start telling stories in our head about what an inadequate person we are."