How Does Water Affect Sleep?
Water is important to overall health. Staying hydrated is vital to ensure proper function of the body. But can not drinking enough water cause sleep problems?
Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night with a dry mouth and trouble swallowing? You’re experiencing dehydration during sleep. You may know how water can impact things like energy, performance and weight. But it also has an impact on your natural circadian rhythm (sleep cycle). This can affect how well (or not so well) you sleep.
Sleep deprivation can also cause other medical conditions like high blood pressure, obesity and a higher risk of type 2 diabetes.
Dehydration and Sleep
A good night of rest is so important! And when it comes to bedtime, symptoms of dehydration can cause discomfort and disruptions during sleep. Some of these problems might include muscle cramping or headaches. You may also wake up with a dry mouth and nasal passage which can cause breathing trouble and snoring during the night.
There is evidence that a lack of sleep can also make us more dehydrated. A study of adults in both the United States and China found higher rates of dehydration in those who slept 6 hours or less rather than 8 hours or longer.
But…drinking too much water can also impact sleep. If you’ve made the mistake of going to bed with a full bladder, you know how annoying it is to wake up in the middle of the night needing to use the bathroom. This is known as nocturia. It not only disrupts sleep durations, but many people may have trouble falling back asleep after getting up to relieve their bladder.
Not sleeping well due to dehydration can also cause fatigue and lethargy during the day. And there’s a plot twist…people experiencing fatigue also have a tougher time falling asleep at night.
Another symptom of poor sleep and dehydration is increased appetite. Have you ever noticed yourself craving more junk food or sweets the day after a rough night of sleep? It’s likely due to dehydration and your hormones being out of whack from not getting enough rest.
When we’re dehydrated and don’t sleep well, we also tend to get…irritable. Brain fog, anxiety and some crazy emotions are a few symptoms of poor sleep.
So it’s extra important to be more aware of your hydration status throughout the day and sleep well. Check out these tips on how to stay hydrated overnight.