Sleep WellbeingHow to Avoid Waking Up Groggy

February 16, 2022by Alyssa Villamil0

There’s nothing more unpleasant than waking up and wishing you could just lay back down and fall asleep. However, for many of us, waking up groggy is a daily challenge. Even if you put in the effort to get enough sleep, there’s no assurance that you’ll feel refreshed when you wake up.

That groggy feeling you get when you first wake up in the morning is called Sleep inertia. You’re fatigued, a bit bewildered, and unsure if you’re ready to get started. Shift workers and security personnel, for example, are more likely to suffer from it. Sleep inertia may have a severe influence on critical tasks like driving and making decisions.

What is Sleep Inertia?

Sleep inertia is the sensation of grogginess, disorientation, drowsiness, and cognitive impairment that all at once follows when waking up. In most cases, sleep inertia lasts 15 to 60 minutes, although it can last up to a few hours after waking up. There is no known biological reasons why you may experience sleep inertia but researchers hypothesize that sleep inertia is a protective mechanism that aids in the maintenance of sleep during unwelcome arousals.

People with strong morning sleep inertia may be more likely to be confused during sleep arousal or sleep drunkenness in some instances. Sleep drunkenness, on the other hand, is like waking up from a deep sleep and feeling disoriented, confused, or having an adrenaline surge. Sleep drunkenness bypasses the sleep inertia phase, meaning your body and brain won’t get the chance to transition into the awakened phase.

Remedies to Avoid Groggy Mornings

Even if you're feeling groggy and sleepy when you wake up, there are a few things you can do to help yourself cope with the affects after you're up.
Light Exposure
Sleep inertia can be reduced by aligning your sleep and waking cycles with the natural rise and fall of the sun. Artificial light, especially viewed later in the day, has been shown to affect the body's natural circadian rhythm and disturb sleep. Blackout darkening curtains can help you get a more good night's sleep by adjusting the light in your bedroom.
Your muscles are essentially inactive and not moving while you sleep, which is why it feels like waking up groggy from a long coma. Stretching your body stimulates the release of endorphins into your system by reactivating those muscles. Stretching first thing in the morning relieves back and neck discomfort, improves flexibility, improves posture, increases blood flow, and provides you an energy boost for your day.
Drink a Glass of Water
If you feel tired or groggy when you get up in the morning, you're probably dehydrated. After all, you've been sleeping without a drink for about eight hours. You'll feel tired and irritable if you don't drink enough water. Drinking 12 to 16 ounces of water after waking up will help you replenish the water you've lost during the night. Wait at least an hour before drinking any caffeine.
Washing your Face with Cold Water
The nerves in your face are awakened and restored by splashing cold water on them, which helps you wake up and signals a temperature shift in your body. This approach also helps to depuff your eyelids and narrow your pores, resulting in a smoother, more rejuvenated appearance. If getting out of bed is difficult, have a water mist beside your bed so you may lean over and spray yourself without opening your eyes.
In the morning, reaching for a cup of coffee or an energy drink may help you feel more awake. This is because caffeine boosts your alertness by counteracting the drowsiness-inducing adenosine. However, caffeine may stay in your system for up to 10 hours that's why too much of caffeine can interfere with your sleep, so avoid consuming it several hours before bedtime.

The symptoms of sleep inertia usually fade within an hour for most people. Talk to your doctor if your sleep inertia lasts longer than that, or if you have severe daytime drowsiness throughout the day.

A perfect mattress may improve your sleep quality and help you feel more comfortable and rejuvenated when you wake up. Speak with one of our Sleep Consultants now to learn more about your sleep needs.

Alyssa Villamil

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