EFFECT OF ALCOHOL ON YOUR SLEEP

EFFECT OF ALCOHOL ON YOUR SLEEP

A drink or glass of wine to fall asleep faster? Even if that 'nightcap' makes you sleepy and your eyes close faster, it won't improve the quality of your sleep. Quite the contrary. The University of Melbourne, among others, investigated the effect of alcohol on your sleep.

DELTA AND ALPHA WAVES

In the sleep laboratory at the University of Melbourne, a group of people were put to the test. One half got orange juice with real vodka, the other half with fake vodka. In this way, the participants themselves did not know whether they drank alcohol or not. Brain activity was then measured during their sleep.

The researchers thus established that the frequency of the brain waves was influenced. Both delta and alpha waves were more active. We will spare you the scientific explanation, but it comes down to the fact that the activity of certain brain waves indicates whether you sleep soundly or lightly. A healthy night's sleep satisfies a certain sequence of peaks and troughs in brain waves.

DISTURBED SLEEPING PATTERNS

Alcohol stimulates the first deep sleep, but shortens the REM sleep or the dream phase. However, your body needs this phase in order to recover. By drinking alcohol less than two hours before you go to sleep, your sleep pattern is confused, which is detrimental to your sleep quality.

What are the consequences of this? First of all, you wake up tired. In addition, your concentration and alertness decrease. But it also affects you in the long term. This poor sleep affects your memory over time and causes a chronic lack of sleep. This is only disadvantageous.

THE SOLUTION?

Of course: the more alcohol you drink, the more it negatively affects your sleep and your health. If you drink an exceptional glass and then immediately go to sleep, don't worry. However, don't make a habit out of it and certainly don't use it as a sedative. 

Sleeping problems? There are various natural sleep aids or methods to improve your sleep quality that you can try. Discuss with your doctor what the best solution is for you.

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