How Does Alcohol Affect Sleep

How Does Alcohol Affect Sleep? (The Ultimate Guide)

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Welcome to my article – “How Does Alcohol Affect Sleep?”

This is aimed at being a guide to the effects of alcohol on sleep and I hope to answer the many questions that you may have about drinking and sleep.A pair of feet poking out from the bottom of the covers on a bed

However, if for any reason I have failed to cover something more specific on your mind then please feel free to drop me a line in the comments section at the bottom of this article, or for something more private I’m happy to answer your emails personally.

I also want to add that this isn’t some type of promotional “you need to stop drinking” guide, as I am a drinker myself.

However, over the years I have seen the effects that drinking has had on my sleep, so I am far more sensible about my alcohol intake nowadays (the binge-drinking “3-night weekends” prevalent throughout my late teens and probably my entire 20s are a thing of the past – well most of the time).

So, without further ado let’s look at how alcohol affects sleep.

The Effects of Alcohol on Sleep – The Facts

If you’re someone who believes that taking a nightcap is a great way to get a good night’s sleep then I’m afraid to say you’re wrong.

I think we are all aware that consuming alcohol, no matter what your poison – beer, wine, or spirits, typically leaves you feeling a little drowsy. And it is due to this effect that many of us turn to alcohol as a way to “help us sleep”.

In fact, I have seen a number of surveys which estimate that approximately 1 in 5 of us will use alcohol as a way to help us fall asleep at night.

I will say that alcohol is a depressant and therefore it will help to induce sleep, although it will lead to a poor quality of sleep. This typically includes waking up multiple times (especially in the second half of the night), night sweats, and it will disrupt REM sleep.

Alcohol Doesn’t Actually Help You Sleep

There are various studies which prove that alcohol doesn’t help you to sleep.

The one factor that we are all aware of is that alcohol reduces sleep onset latency, which is the time it takes us to fall asleep, i.e. you will typically fall asleep faster when you’ve been drinking.

With that said, this will cause disruption to your sleep in the second half of the night by reducing REM sleep, which means you will spend more time in non-REM sleep.

You’re not actually falling asleep quickly after a particularly heavy drinking session, but what you’re experiencing is probably closer to passing out.

Additionally, I know from my own experience (of trying to use alcohol as a sleep aid) and from discussions with friends, that the amount you require to fall asleep slowly increases over time, as you tend to build a tolerance to the sedative effects of alcohol.

The reason there is so much disruption to sleep during the second half of the night is because alcohol is quickly metabolized, so you will typically feel “withdrawal symptoms” later on in the night, as your body’s systems return to normal.

There are certain symptoms associated with this “withdrawal” and these include:

  • Very light sleep
  • Waking up multiple times
  • REM rebound – this is the increased frequency and depth of REM sleep which often happens when we have experienced periods of sleep deprivation
  • REM rebound is associated with vivid dreams, nightmares, sweating, etc.

The Dangers of Using Alcohol to Sleep

If you’re using alcohol as a sleep aid this can eventually lead to dependence. A woman wearing a black dress and costume jewelry around her head, holding a wine glass

I know this started to become a worry for me.

I’m definitely no angel when it comes to my alcohol consumption over the years, but I was what I would refer to as a “weekend warrior”.

My drinking was typically kept to Friday and Saturday night, with the occasional Sunday daytime, but I very rarely drank during the week.

However, when I first started experiencing insomnia I sought solace in the arms of alcohol as a way to help me nod off.

I remember taking stock of both my drinking and sleeping habits and I was horrified that I had gone for an extended period drinking every night in order to “knock myself out”. This had to stop.

Furthermore, using alcohol to help you to sleep can also lead to a wide variety of sleep issues, such as sleep deprivation, sleep walking, and sleep talking.

Something I wasn’t aware of is that alcohol can suppress your breathing when you’re asleep at night. This can actually trigger sleep apnea, a sleep disorder which can be an extremely dangerous condition to have.

We are now aware that alcohol impairs sleep in the second half of the night, so an overall decreased sleep time and this in turn may lead to excessive daytime sleepiness.

Alcohol and Insomnia

For many of us insomnia can eventually become a chronic condition and so by using alcohol to help you to sleep you’re only making things worse.

In fact, by turning to drink there is an increased chance of alcoholism,

It’s not a road I’ve personally been down, but I do know that when I used alcohol to make me fall asleep I was shocked by how I felt and I realized I needed to find another solution.

I wasn’t drinking huge amounts, but a glass or two (perhaps 3) of wine here, or a couple of beers there, and my consumption soon totted up, especially as this was becoming a nightly occurrence.

When I stopped drinking after a few short weeks to find another way to deal with my insomnia I noticed after a few days I was missing my nightly “fix” of alcohol. Not good! In a way, you could say that a dependency had already started to form.

I had never felt like that before in my life and I was actually scared about what might happen if I continued to use alcohol as a crutch to help me sleep.

Alcoholism in itself is associated with factors such as, increased sleep onset, poor quality sleep, problems with sleep maintenance, and decreased REM sleep.

Finally, alcoholism increases the severity of obstructive sleep apnea, and this is even true for those who have no history of sleep apnea.

Drinking Alcohol Will Interrupt Your Sleep

Drinking alcohol will typically lead to a very light form of sleep and an individual waking up on numerous occasions throughout the night. A man with his head on a table and an empty bottle next to him potentially asleep from too much to drink

During the first half of the night, as your body is metabolizing the alcohol, you will typically spend more time in non-REM sleep.

Just in case you weren’t aware, REM sleep is required for both our physical and mental well-being, and this is usually the stage of sleep when the mind is refreshed and rejuvenated during the night.

This is actually why you’ll usually wake up after a night of drinking feeling mentally fatigued and drowsy, irrespective of how many hours you’ve spent under the covers.

A lot of people assume spending a lot of time in deep sleep may be a good thing, but in reality it isn’t good for you at all. The deep sleep cycle usually ends during the first half of the night (for people who generally sleep well and haven’t been drinking alcohol), thus allowing the cycles of REM sleep to gradually increase as the night goes on.

Our body’s are actually tuned to sleep a certain way and making sudden changes to how we naturally sleep isn’t good for our physical or mental well-being.

Once the alcohol in our system has been metabolized you would think everything would return to normal, but this isn’t the case and the second half of our night’s sleep becomes extremely disrupted.

This is when you begin to go through what is known as the “rebound effect”. The body is no longer sedated by alcohol and this leads to you going from deeper sleep to lighter sleep, as well as waking up more frequently.

More often than not, you’ll wake up in the second half of the night many times, but probably won’t even recall this the following morning. However, this will of course interrupt your sleep.

Not only does this mean poor quality sleep, but it plays around with our sleep cycles. You will typically spend longer during this period in REM sleep, which leads to vivid dreams. This is also when unexplained episodes of sleepwalking and sleep talking often occur.

The reason that you wake up so often is because alcohol interferes with the natural hormone production of sleep-related chemicals, such as melatonin.

Adenosine is a neurotransmitter that inhibits arousal and causes sleepiness. This is at its highest point when you drink alcohol and go to bed, thus making you fall asleep very quickly. However, as the night wears on, adenosine reduces and this causes constant awakenings.

Adenosine may then be produced at inappropriate times the following day, which is why you may feel sleepy in the afternoon, plus this throws your natural sleep-wake cycle into confusion.

So, you could say that this entire process has a knock-on effect on your sleeping patterns for a number of days.

What Happens When You Go To Bed Drunk?

The Effects of Alcohol on The Circadian Rhythm

I’ve mentioned how alcohol can cause disruptions to our natural sleep-wake cycle.

Firstly, before I go any further, a quick fact for you – Even a moderate amount of alcohol taken just one hour before bedtime can reduce melatonin production by 20%.

A moderate amount of alcohol is typically classed as ONE drink.

So, by enjoying just ONE drink an hour before bedtime you have already potentially decreased your chances of getting a good night’s sleep by 20%.

Basically, alcohol is reducing your internal body clock’s abilities to respond to light, which is normally what keeps you in sync over the course of a 24-hour day, i.e. alert and awake during daylight hours, tired and ready to sleep at night.

Additionally, our 24-hour internal body clock, or our circadian rhythm, is responsible for pretty much every single one of the body’s major processes that you can think of including:

  • Cognitive function
  • Energy
  • Immunity
  • Metabolism
  • Mood
  • Sexual Functions
  • Sleep

We are now aware that alcohol disrupts our circadian rhythms, although you can now see this is responsible for far more of the body’s processes than just sleep.

This may result in:

Poor liver function – the liver is the body’s natural filtration system. Its goal is to metabolize food and chemicals (which includes alcohol), as well as removing harmful toxins from the bloodstream.

When alcohol interferes with circadian rhythms this has a knock-on effect on the functioning of the liver, which in turn can lead to liver toxicity or liver disease.

Leaky gut – this is recognized as a real digestive condition, whereby toxins and bacteria are able to “leak” through the intestinal walls and enter the bloodstream.

Depression – insomnia and depression often go hand-in-hand and this is not improved if you throw alcohol into the mix.

The Circadian Rhythm Explained in 3 Minutes

Surely Alcohol Can’t Be That Bad For Sleep

If this wasn’t enough, unfortunately there’s more.

Diuretic effect – Alcohol pushing your circadian rhythms out of sync will lead to the diuretic effect.

We all know what a pain it can be to wake up in the middle of the night needing to go to the bathroom. It’s not just the hassle of getting out of bed and having to relieve yourself, but then also trying to fall back asleep again.

I know people may suffer from frequent night-time trips to the bathroom for various other reasons and medical conditions, but on the whole most of us sleep soundly through the night.A woman lying in bed with her arms outstretched and hands on her head

In fact, you could say that your body has learned to put your bladder to sleep for the night as well. Can you think of any other time of the day when you go a full 7-9 hours without needing to visit the bathroom?

However, alcohol being a diuretic will typically disrupt your sleep for regular visits to the restroom.

Night sweats – Alcohol plays havoc with the body’s core temperature.

You will usually find that alcohol actually cools you down at first, which makes it far easier to fall asleep. However, in the second half of the night the body’s temperature will increase.

Due to its diuretic effects, alcohol will literally force your body to lose this heat, and the easiest way to achieve this is through sweat. This will of course make you dehydrated.

Snoring and Sleep Apnea – Both these sleep disorders typically occur due to the relaxed tissues in either the nose, mouth, or throat. This in turn can cause a blockage in your airways, which leads to these relaxed tissues vibrating and making the sounds that we associate with snoring and sleep apnea.

Guess what?

Alcohol is a relaxant, so this is why many people snore when they have consumed alcohol. If you’re someone who already suffers from these conditions then you’re aggravating them.

Alcohol consumption can eventually promote sleep disorders such as insomnia and obstructive sleep apnea, or as I’ve just alluded to, make them worse.

As you can see alcohol affects your circadian rhythm and this can lead to a multitude of issues and conditions.

The lack of quality sleep will usually cause you to feel sleepy, irritable, fatigued, and you’ll experience problems with concentration and focus the following day.

Basically, the more you drink the closer it gets to your bedtime the more of a negative impact it will have on your sleep.

With that said, I’ve already mentioned that even a moderate amount of alcohol close to bedtime will still have an affect on the quality of your sleep.

However, this doesn’t mean that you have to stop drinking completely in order to sleep well.

I would hazard a guess that you’d like to know how much is too much alcohol in this case and when is the right time to be drinking.

When and How Much Can You Drink to Not Impact on Sleep?

An ideal amount (as a drinker obviously) is to stick to no more than 2-3 times a week.A Man With a Group of Friends Enjoying Some Alcoholic Beverages

This allows you to possibly have a couple of beers after work, enjoy a few glasses of wine during a romantic restaurant meal, share a glass or two with friends at the weekend, or simply crack open a can or bottle of something at the end of a hard week.

As to when you should be drinking – research shows that your body struggles to metabolize alcohol at specific times of the day. This is especially true in the morning and again at night.

However, it appears that consuming alcohol in the early evening, typically around the time of most “Happy Hours” (oh, so that’s why it’s called happy hour) is the ideal time to have a drink.

Final Thoughts

In a way I feel ever so slightly hypocritical writing about how alcohol affects sleep, as I am a drinker myself.

My own insomnia was caused by a combination or grief, stress, and bad sleep hygiene habits (things I was doing during the day and the evening that would affect my sleep).

RELATED ====> How To Sleep When Stressed and Anxious

I had never really considered the impact that alcohol had on my sleep before this, and that’s even with the many extremely boozy nights out.

However, as I’ve mentioned, when insomnia started to become an issue I turned to alcohol as a solution, and for the first time EVER in my life I was drinking on a daily basis.

It actually took me nearly 2 months (initially for 3 weeks, then I stopped for a few days, and then returned to drinking every night for a few more weeks) of doing this to finally realize that I was going down a rocky path and I had to try something else to combat my insomnia.

This doesn’t mean I’ve become a teetotaler, far from it, but I’m now more aware of the impact alcohol has on my sleeping patterns.

I hope you are too.

Thank you for reading and Sweet Dreams.

RELATED POST====> My number ONE recommendation for all insomnia sufferers out there. If you want to know How to Treat Insomnia Naturally please take a moment to read my review on what I believe is the best natural cure for insomnia. My review of the Blue Heron Insomnia Program.

18 thoughts on “How Does Alcohol Affect Sleep? (The Ultimate Guide)”

  1. Hey Partha,

    As usual, another excellent read!

    I am no drinker myself but I have seen so many people use alcohol as a means to make them fall asleep faster. It definitely works but at the risk of decreasing your quality of sleep. I am so glad your post addresses this as more and more people should learn about the effects alcohol has on insomnia.

    I have had close friends who were late-night drinkers and even though they knew how alcohol was affecting them negatively, it was just not something they had control over due to dependence. A glass turns into two, then three and then before you now it, a couple bottles have turned bottoms up! It is a wonderful but vicious cycle!

    I am impressed that you overcame this addiction (and kudos to you) being self-aware of how it was taking a toll on your sleep (or lack thereof). All respect to you. It encourages others to rethink the choices they make so close to bedtime for the sake of a good night’s rest.

    I love happy hours and i guess, after reading your post, will continue to sticking to that hour to enjoy all my fave drinks lol 😀

    Cheers & Sweet dreams!
    -Sasha

    Reply
    • Hi Sasha,

      Lovely to hear from you as always.

      Your story about your close friends certainly rings true for me, and I’m sure for many other people too.

      I’d never really ever considered the impact of alcohol on my sleeping habits many years ago. It wasn’t something that particularly bothered me. I enjoyed (lots of) drinks at the weekend and I knew I’d typically have a hangover for a couple of days, but when it came to sleep, as I say it didn’t bother me.

      I guess back in those days I slept fairly well and always avoided alcohol during the working week.

      In reality my sleeping issues didn’t start until well into my 30s and it took a while to realize that I wasn’t sleeping well and this was probably down to stress and anxiety.

      It was at this stage that I started to “self-medicate” with alcohol, but not large quantities you understand. I think the thing that became most worrying to me was it was becoming a regular nightly occurrence, something I’d never done before.

      Obviously, I’m not saying that binge-drinking at the weekends is any better (and there are studies which claim that this type of drinking is potentially worse), but in my own mind I always felt that alcohol was never an issue because I’d typically only drink (before insomnia) 2-3 days a week.

      Great to hear you that aren’t a “real drinker” and that you stick to the occasional happy hour. To be honest, that’s probably the best way to be.

      Partha

      Reply
  2. How does alcohol affect sleep is the ultimate guide, you know there is a difference between falling asleep and passing out from drinking too much. I must admit you have provided a wealth of information on this topic, and I hope more people understand how alcohol does affect their sleep.

    Jeff

    Reply
    • Hi Jeff,

      Thanks for your comments.

      I would hazard a guess that many people don’t make this connection between alcohol and poor quality sleep. However, my reason for actually writing this article is because I noticed it was quite a popular search term on Google.

      This obviously means that there are others who are worried about the effects that alcohol may be having on not only their sleep, but perhaps their lives in general.

      I think it’s all too easy to turn to a glass or two of your favorite tipple when sleep starts to become an issue, I know I did, but as I’ve mantioned it’s not actually having the desired effect, plus it can lead to dependency and various other problems.

      Thanks
      Partha

      Reply
  3. Hi there,

    Thanks for sharing this information in such a clear and concise manner. There are certainly some facts in this article that resonate with me and people I know. For instance, I know some people snore excessively after a night of heavy drinking. Also, I always feel more lethargic after a night of drinking; it all makes sense now if it’s disrupting the latter part of the sleep quality.

    I’m guessing the easiest solution is to avoid alcohol. I wonder does drinking it earlier in the day help prevent sleep disruption as it’s likely to have worn off when compared with drinking at night.

    Looking forward to your next post.

    Best wishes,
    Sharon

    Reply
    • Hi Sharon,

      Always great to hear from you.

      Yes, I’m sure many things in this article will ring true with many people.

      I’m sure that the typical “hangover” effect is always blamed on the alcohol, and where it is partly to blame, I’m starting to understand that the lack of “quality” sleep is probably just as much (if not more) to blame with how we feel the following day.

      I’ve mentioned that I still drink and it’s not something I feel I am going to stop anytime soon. It’s just about moderation and drinking at the right times.

      As I’ve said in the article, enjoying a few drinks early in the evening is the best time of day, as it allows the alcohol to metabolize before you go to bed, so your sleep should be a lot less interrupted.

      I would feel far too much like a hypocrite to tell people to avoid alcohol altogether.

      The main point is that it should never be used as an “aid to sleep”, as in reality it does anything but help you to sleep.

      Thanks
      Partha

      Reply
  4. Hi Partha,

    Thank you for this detailed explanation on how the alcohol can affect your sleep. I have actually decided to stop drinking for a various of reasons. And I am not talking of not ever drink alcohol, but reduce significantly the amount.
    Like you mentioned in the article, I have falsely believed as well that my glass of wine before sleep will make me relax and sleep better.
    Although alcohol makes you fall asleep faster, the quality of sleep is affected, therefore you wake up the next day feeling tired.
    There is no reason to feel bad about writing an article about the negative effects of alcohol on sleep.
    For me personally, this article was very helpful as it explained step by step and in details how bad my habit of drinking before sleep to relax and fall asleep was. And I hope many people will read this article and benefit from it.

    Thank you,
    Yoana

    Reply
    • Hi Yoana,

      Thank you for your comments.

      I must admit I too have gone through periods where I chose not to drink. Often there is no particular reason, whereas other times there have been.

      I didn’t really want to get overly into the ins-and-outs of drinking alcohol with this article, although it’s probably hard to ignore.

      I know last year I went long periods of time without drinking. I was training for and completed a Spartan Race in June, and actually went for 3 whole months without touching a drop beforehand (you don’t want to know what effect one beer had on me following the race, LOL).

      I also regularly set myself 30-day challenges, typically based around health or work. So, I usually do something or avoid something for 30 days in a row. I have done at least 4 no alcohol 30-day challenges over the last 2 years.

      However, in terms of this actual article and the effects alcohol has on sleep, I thank you for your kind words, and I hope that people will finally start to get the message that alcohol in NO WAY helps us to sleep well at night – in fact, the complete opposite.

      Thanks
      Partha

      Reply
  5. I never woke up afer a few caps with a feeling of a good night sleep LOL. It’s maybe easier to fall asleep while you’re a bit tipsy, but it’s almost impossible to wake up fresh are rested after a night out or just a few cans of beer with your mates at home while watching a game. Luckily, I don’t party anymore so I don’t have these problems. I can digest a few beers once a week and that’s it for me. In any case, thanks for sharing this post, mate! I’ve learned a lot.

    Reply
    • Hi Ivan,

      Great to hear from you as always and thank you for your kind words.

      I agree – I don’t think there can be anyone who can HONESTLY admit that they will wake up the following morning after drinking alcohol (even just one or two drinks) and say they feel perfectly normal.

      Unfortunately, I do have freinds who drink on a daily basis (and in some cases quite heavily) and they are convinced that “having a few beers” the night before has no effect on them the following day, plus it has also helped them to sleep better.

      I don’t want to come across as some “born again non-drinker”, because I’m definitely not, and I’ll still enjoy a tipple every now and then, but I know from my own experiences that you NEVER sleep better after imbibing and it definitely does have an impact on you the next day.

      Glad you learned something from the article and it’s nice to see we’re on the same level when it comes to enjoying the occasional beer.

      Thanks
      Partha

      Reply
  6. When I suffered insomnia a few years ago, I also thought that a glass of red wine could help me sleep. I did not know that over time you need more alcohol to have that effect. That probably explains why it only worked in the beginning …
    I drink about 3 times a week, mostly in the afternoon or early evening, and now that I read your article I will pay more attention to having my last drink at least 4 hours before going to bed. I usually do that, I think 😉 but it is better to be sure.
    It was interesting to learn why Happy Hour is at such early times in the evening. I always thought that it was in the early evening to encourage customers to drink more in the later evening – well, it probbaly is too, otherwise, how else are they going to make money, right? 😉
    In my twenties I went to some crazy parties, and I remember a friend who always drank so much that he fell asleep while he was standing in the room, like a horse! It always made us laugh. I never did binge drinking, I like to enjoy the taste of alcohol, not down it all one after the other; I don’t see the point of that, but I did drink more when I was in my twenties, but I don’t do that anymore. 🙂 I am glad I read this info. I thought that I was a responsable drinker, but I realize that there are still a few things I need to pay attention to.

    Reply
    • Hi Christine,

      Always lovely to hear from you.

      Oh dear, LOL, there’s so much in your comment that I can relate too.

      Firstly, on a more serious note, yes eventually alcohol will have less of an impact (whether you’re trying to sleep quickly or just from drinking in general). Our tolerance levels will typically increase the more we drink. This will explain why as young adults we probably have many “crazy” stories, often not so much from the amount we drank, but rather our inability to handle the booze, thus leading us to do “crazy” things. However, as we got older, we were able to “handle it”.

      I will say that my jibe about “Happy Hour” was actually just tongue-in-cheek. I’m positive “Happy Hour” has absolutely nothing to do with our sleep cycles, but as you say, a way for businesses to earn more money from their clientele.

      Let’s face facts, bars, pubs, clubs, restaurants are all businesses looking to maximize profits, and a great way to achieve this is be seen as “giving something for nothing or extremely cheaply” to encourage further spending later in the evening. Plus I’m sure having a skinful is all the encouragement many of us need to carrying on drinking well into the night.

      Your story about the friend who fell asleep standing up made me laugh, but I also had a friend who was capable of the exact same feat.

      Unfortunately, this was before the introduction of smartphones, or I’m sure you would have been immortalized on social media in numerous selfies over the years.

      Fun times.

      Thanks
      Partha

      Reply
  7. Before I state my opinion about alcohol and its effect on sleep and general health, I want to thank you for this fantastic and essential post that people need to read. Alcohol is becoming a problem nowadays because people have more stress and depression in their life, which makes them decide to drink alcohol in the wrong way.

    As you mentioned, alcohol will affect our sleep slowly; that’s why some people don’t believe it affects our sleep. But over time, it will cause specific problems that will lead to insomnia or even worse.

    Above all, consuming anything other than water before sleep is not an excellent thing for the body as a whole and the digestive system as it will inevitably affect it severely. Alcohol indeed causes depression, night sweat, and other symptoms you mentioned. But, getting used to drink alcohol can influence the body to use it as an excuse to ask for it to sleep “alcohol dependent,” which is a bad thing!

    Also, the diuretic effect that it causes can lead anyone to wake up several times at night, which ultimately will make the person feel tired as the body didn’t get enough rest or deep sleep effect that the body needs for several functions.

    Alcohol might not show harmful effects in the early stage. However, later on, after weeks, months, and maybe years of consumption, it will become a huge problem for the consumer. Therefore, it is always recommended to avoid drinking alcohol right before sleeping, even if you think alcohol is doing a good job!

    Again, thank you very much for this detailed and insightful post, as I enjoyed reading it. Others need to learn from this post and avoid bad habits to have a better and healthy life

    Reply
    • Hi Dr. Alkhawaldeh,

      Firstly, thank you ever so much for your insightful comments.

      Secondly, wow, a Doctor, I feel ever so slightly under pressure to get my facts right here, LOL.

      I’m glad that my article has met with your approval, and the fact that I have got all the points right it seems.

      Insomnia has been a problem for me for many years, so I have spent just as long studying and researching this sleep disorder, so I like to think that I am fairly knowledgeable on the subject.

      Obviously, not medically qualified knowledgeable, but I have a basic understanding of the core concepts.

      I think your comment about alcohol dependency is something that has always had a huge impact on me. I’ve also enjoyed a drink, but unfortunately I have seen many friends go down that slippery slope into what I guess we term “alcoholism”.

      However, I am well aware that the typical idea of an alcoholic is someone who we see on street corners, drinking out of brown paper bags, first thing in the morning. Okay, perhaps a slight exaggeration, but hopefully you get my meaning.

      But, alcohol dependency can remain hidden for many years, and I’m sure many believe they “function” almost as normal in their everyday lives, but it soon catches up with you.

      This is why I am so against using alcohol to try to help you sleep (and I have tried previously as mentioned). I hope my article does highlight that this is simply having the opposite affect that people hope for you.

      Thanks
      Partha

      Reply
  8. Partha,
    Your summary got to the gist of your article. Sleep habits make or break your sleep. Instead of treating the habit, people will treat the symptom with alcohol. I thought your part about how alcohol will interrupt your circadian rhythm. The body needs that rhythm from day to day to maintain energy. Although alcohol can serve some purposes, it seems to me that drinking in order to sleep isn’t the best idea. Thanks for the article!

    Reply
    • Hi Robert,

      Thank you for your comments.

      Yes indeed, you’ve hit the nail on the head there.

      Many of us will use alcohol as a way to “crash out”, but as you quite rightly say this will only “treat” the initial symptom, but do nothing to treat the root cause of a lack of sleep.

      The impact that alcohol has on the circadian rhythm will cause so many other issues it doesn’t bear thinking about. I think many of us wrongly assume that having a quick nightcap is a great way to “knock ourselves out” and enjoy a great night’s sleep. However, in truth, it does the complete opposite.

      Thanks
      Partha

      Reply
  9. This is a great post. Although I haven’t ever used alcohol to go to sleep but I do notice a huge difference in how I sleep when intoxicated. I certainly get hot sweats and talk a lot as you mention. I didn’t realise that alcohol can cause sleeping issues. The fact I have 3 kids and work 6 days a week most certainly means I need my sleep!

    Reply
    • Hi Russ,

      Thanks for your comments.

      I’m glad to hear you haven’t gone down the route of trying to use alcohol as an aid for sleep, but as you can clearly see it just doesn’t work.

      I can relate to what you’ve said, and I’m sure we’ve all had a terrible night’s sleep or woken up a little worse for wear once in a while.

      As I’ve mentioned many times, I’m definitely not anti-alcohol, and I still enjoy a drink every now and then, but I’m am now only too aware of how bad alcohol consumption can be in terms of sleep.

      As the saying goes, “everything in moderation”.

      Thanks
      Partha

      Reply

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