By Dr. Joti Samra, CEO & Founder of the Psychological Health & Safety (PH&S) Clinic and MyWorkplaceHealth
Do you lay in bed tossing and turning? Do you check the clock and calculate the number of hours of sleep you’d get if you fell asleep right now? Or think about your list of to-do’s for tomorrow? If so, you’re not alone. So let’s talk about how to manage the negative effects of anxiety on sleep.
Anxiety, and associated worry thoughts, have a significant impact on our ability to sleep. And with the high demand world we live in, it’s no wonder that so many people struggle with sleep problems.
The tough thing about anxiety and sleep is that it can be difficult to know which comes first. Do we not sleep because we are anxious? Or are we anxious because we can’t sleep? It’s likely both. Stress and anxiety can cause or worsen sleep difficulties and lack of sleep can make us anxious.
So, how can we manage our worry thoughts to help us get better sleep?
How to Get Better Sleep
Worry and anxiety are a normal part of life, but also among the strongest factors that impact sleep. If you are finding worries are preventing you from sleeping, here are some tips to help you sleep better:
Still not able to effectively manage the negative effects of worry on your sleep? Cognitive-behavioural treatment (CBT) is the most effective treatment for sleep problems, as well as associated mood and worry or anxiety issues. If worry thoughts persist and continue to have a significant impact on sleep, consider seeing a registered mental health provider. It may also be helpful to talk to your family physician to ensure there are no other underlying issues that may be impacting your sleep.