min read
October 31, 2023

Why Can’t I Sleep During My Period?

Not feeling yourself before and during your period may seem familiar – that time of the month when your period arrives, and suddenly, it feels like sleep has abandoned you. You’re not alone. Many women experience sleep disturbances during their menstrual cycle, leaving them tired and frustrated. But why does this happen? In this blog post, we’ll dive into the factors that can disrupt your sleep during your period and explore strategies to help you get the rest you need.

Understanding Menstrual Sleep Problems

Before we explore the reasons behind sleep troubles during your period, let’s briefly understand what’s happening in your body. Hormones play a significant role in your menstrual cycle, with fluctuations in oestrogen and progesterone levels. These hormonal changes can affect various aspects of your health, including your sleep.

Common Sleep Disruptors During Your Period

Pain and Discomfort: Menstrual cramps, bloating, and breast tenderness are common physical discomforts during your period. These discomforts can make it challenging to find a comfortable sleeping position.

Hormonal Fluctuations: Hormonal shifts, particularly a drop in progesterone, can lead to increased body temperature, making it harder to fall asleep or stay asleep comfortably.

Increased Anxiety and Mood Swings: Hormonal changes can also impact your mood, leading to feelings of anxiety, irritability, or sadness. These emotional states can keep your mind racing and make it difficult to relax.

Frequent Urination: Some women experience increased urinary frequency during their period, which can lead to nighttime awakenings and disrupt sleep.

Heavy or Irregular Bleeding: If you have heavy or irregular bleeding during your period, the need to change pads or tampons throughout the night can disturb your sleep.

Gastrointestinal Issues: Hormonal fluctuations can affect your digestive system, leading to issues like diarrhoea or constipation that can disrupt sleep.

Improving Sleep During Your Period

Now that we understand the factors contributing to sleep disturbances during your period, let’s explore some strategies to help you get a better night’s sleep:

Pain Relief: Over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen can help alleviate menstrual cramps and discomfort.

Heat Therapy: Applying a heating pad to your lower abdomen or back can provide comfort and relief.

Relaxation Techniques: Practise relaxation methods like deep breathing, meditation, or progressive muscle relaxation to calm your mind and reduce anxiety.

Hydration: Stay hydrated, but try to limit your fluid intake in the evening to reduce the frequency of nighttime bathroom trips.

Comfortable Sleep Environment: Ensure your sleep environment is conducive to rest. Keep your room cool, dark, and quiet.

Supportive Sleep Gear: Invest in a comfortable mattress and use supportive pillows to help ease physical discomfort.

In summary, experiencing sleep disturbances during your period is common and can be attributed to a variety of factors, including hormonal fluctuations, physical discomfort, and emotional changes. However, by understanding these factors and implementing the strategies mentioned above, you can take proactive steps to improve your sleep quality during your menstrual cycle.

Remember that everyone’s body is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another. If sleep problems persist or are not limited to the time surrounding your menstrual cycle, you may benefit from cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I) with a treatment like Sleepio is a highly effective and evidence-based approach that can help you conquer sleepless nights and regain your quality of life.

Sleepio works with you to develop a personalised treatment plan, empowering you to challenge negative thought patterns, establish healthy sleep habits, and ultimately enjoy restorative and rejuvenating sleep.

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Big Health Team
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