Sleep Disorders

ADHD and Sleep Problems: This is Why You’re Always Tired

Does ADD make you tired? Sleep disturbances caused by ADHD have been overlooked for a number of reasons, including the late age of onset. But recent studies confirm that ADD symptoms do not go away at night. Here, understand the ADHD and sleep link and its most common manifestations. Plus, get tips for winding down quicker, staying asleep longer, and waking up healthier.

ADHD and sleep advice for adults like this woman sleeping on her side in bed.

ADHD and Sleep Problems

Adults with ADHD rarely fall asleep easily, sleep soundly through the night, and then wake up feeling refreshed. More often, ADHD’s mental and physical restlessness disturbs a person’s sleep patterns — and the ensuing exhaustion hurts overall health and treatment. This is widely accepted as true. But, as with most of our knowledge about ADHD in adults, we’re only beginning to understand the stronger link between ADHD and sleep, that creates difficulties:

  • Falling asleep
  • Staying asleep
  • Waking up

Sleep disturbances caused by ADHD have been overlooked for a number of reasons. Sleep problems did not fit neatly into the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) requirement that all ADHD symptoms must be present by age 7. Sleep disturbances associated with ADHD generally appear later in life, at around age 12, on average. Consequently, the arbitrary age cutoff has prevented recognition of night owls and sleep disturbances in ADHD until recently, when studies of adults have become more common. Just as ADHD does not go away at adolescence, it does not go away at night either. It continues to impair life functioning 24 hours a day.

In early attempts to define the syndrome, sleep disturbances were briefly considered a criterion for ADHD, but were dropped from the symptoms list because evidence of them was thought to be too nonspecific. As research has expanded to include adults with ADHD, the causes and effects of sleeping disturbances have become clearer.

For now, sleeping problems tend either to be overlooked or to be viewed as coexisting problems with an unclear relationship to ADHD itself and to the mental fatigue so commonly reported by individuals with ADHD. Sleep disturbances have been incorrectly attributed to the stimulant-class medications that are often the first to be used to treat ADHD.

The Four Big ADHD Sleep Problems

No scientific literature on sleep lists ADHD as a prominent cause of sleep disturbances. Most articles focus on sleep disturbance due to stimulant-class medications, rather than looking at ADHD as the cause. Yet adults with ADHD know that the connection between their condition and sleep problems is real. Sufferers often call it “perverse sleep” — when they want to be asleep, they are awake; when they want to be awake, they are asleep.

[Watch This Video: 5 Fixes for “I Can’t Sleep”]

The four most common sleep disturbances associated with ADHD are:

1. Difficulty Falling Asleep with ADHD

About three-fourths of all adults with ADHD report inability to “shut off my mind so I can fall asleep at night.” Many describe themselves as “night owls” who get a burst of energy when the sun goes down. Others report that they feel tired throughout the day, but as soon as the head hits the pillow, the mind clicks on. Their thoughts jump or bounce from one worry to another. Unfortunately, many of these adults describe their thoughts as “racing,” prompting a misdiagnosis of a mood disorder, when this is nothing more than the mental restlessness of ADHD.

Prior to puberty, 10 to 15 percent of children with ADHD have trouble getting to sleep. This is twice the rate found in children and adolescents who do not have ADHD. This number dramatically increases with age: 50 percent of children with ADHD have difficulty falling asleep almost every night by age 12 ½ by age 30, more than 70 percent of adults with ADHD report that they spend more than one hour trying to fall asleep at night.

2. Restless Sleep with ADHD

When individuals with ADHD finally fall asleep, their sleep is restless. They toss and turn. They awaken at any noise in the house. They are so fitful that bed partners often choose to sleep in another bed. They often awake to find the bed torn apart and covers kicked onto the floor. Sleep is not refreshing and they awaken as tired as when they went to bed.

[How Sleep Deprivation Looks a Lot Like ADHD]

3. Difficulty Waking Up with ADHD

More than 80 percent of adults with ADHD in my practice report multiple awakenings until about 4 a.m. Then they fall into “the sleep of the dead,” from which they have extreme difficulty rousing themselves.

They sleep through two or three alarms, as well as the attempts of family members to get them out of bed. ADHD sleepers are commonly irritable, even combative, when roused before they are ready. Many of them say they are not fully alert until noon.

4. Intrusive Sleep with ADHD

Paul Wender, M.D., a 30-year veteran ADHD researcher, relates ADHD to interest-based performance. As long as persons with ADHD were interested in or challenged by what they were doing, they did not demonstrate symptoms of the disorder. (This phenomenon is called hyperfocus by some, and is often considered to be an ADHD pattern.) If, on the other hand, an individual with ADHD loses interest in an activity, his nervous system disengages, in search of something more interesting. Sometimes this disengagement is so abrupt as to induce sudden extreme drowsiness, even to the point of falling asleep.

Marian Sigurdson, Ph.D., an expert on electroencephalography (EEG) findings in ADHD, reports that brain wave tracings at this time show a sudden intrusion of theta waves into the alpha and beta rhythms of alertness. We all have seen “theta wave intrusion,” in the student in the back of the classroom who suddenly crashes to the floor, having “fallen asleep.” This was probably someone with ADHD who was losing consciousness due to boredom rather than falling asleep. This syndrome is life-threatening if it occurs while driving, and it is often induced by long-distance driving on straight, monotonous roads. Often this condition is misdiagnosed as “EEG negative narcolepsy.” The extent of incidence of intrusive “sleep” is not known, because it occurs only under certain conditions that are hard to reproduce in a laboratory.

Why Do People with ADHD Have Problems Sleeping?

There are several theories about the causes of sleep disturbance in people with ADHD, with a telling range of viewpoints. Physicians base their responses to their patients’ complaints of sleep problems on how they interpret the cause of the disturbances. A physician who looks first for disturbances resulting from disorganized life patterns will treat problems in a different way than a physician who thinks of them as a manifestation of ADHD.

Thomas Brown, Ph.D., longtime researcher in ADHD and developer of the Brown Scales, was one of the first to give serious attention to the problem of sleep in children and adolescents with ADHD. He sees sleep disturbances as indicative of problems of arousal and alertness in ADHD itself. Two of the five symptom clusters that emerge from the Brown Scales involve activation and arousal:

  • Organizing and activating to begin work activities.
  • Sustaining alertness, energy, and effort.

Brown views problems with sleep as a developmentally-based impairment of management functions of the brain — particularly, an impairment of the ability to sustain and regulate arousal and alertness. Interestingly, he does not recommend treatments common to ADHD, but rather recommends a two-pronged approach that stresses better sleep hygiene and the suppression of unwanted and inconvenient arousal states by using medications with sedative properties.

The simplest explanation is that sleep disturbances are direct manifestations of ADHD itself. True hyperactivity is extremely rare in women of any age. Most women experience the mental and physical restlessness of ADHD only when they are trying to shut down the arousal state of day-to-day functioning in order to fall asleep. At least 75 percent of adults of both genders report that their minds restlessly move from one concern to another for several hours until they finally fall asleep. Even then, they toss and turn, awaken frequently, and sometimes barely sleep at all.

The fact that 80 percent of adults with ADHD eventually fall into “the sleep of the dead” has led researchers to look for explanations. No single theory explains the severe impairment of the ability to rouse oneself into wakefulness. Some patients with ADHD report that they sleep well when they go camping or are out of doors for extended periods of time.

One hypothesis is that the lack of an accurate circadian clock may also account for the difficulty that many with ADHD have in judging the passage of time. Their internal clocks are not “set.” Consequently, they experience only two times: “now” and “not now.” Many of my adult patients do not wear watches. They experience time as an abstract concept, important to other people, but one which they don’t understand. It will take many more studies to establish the links between circadian rhythms and ADHD.

How to Get to Sleep with ADD

No matter how a doctor explains sleep problems, the remedy usually involves something called “sleep hygiene,” which considers all the things that foster the initiation and maintenance of sleep. This set of conditions is highly individualized. Some people need absolute silence. Others need white noise, such as a fan or radio, to mask disturbances to sleep. Some people need a snack before bed, while others can’t eat anything right before bedtime. A few rules of sleep hygiene are universal:

  • Use the bed only for sleep or sex, not as a place to confront problems or argue.
  • Have a set bedtime and a bedtime routine and stick to it — rigorously.
  • Avoid naps during the day.

Two more elements of good sleep hygiene seem obvious, but they should be stressed for people with ADHD.

  • Get in bed to go to sleep. Many people with ADHD are at their best at night. They are most energetic, thinking clearest, and most stable after the sun goes down. The house is quiet and distractions are low. This is their most productive time. Unfortunately, they have jobs and families to which they must attend the next morning, tasks made harder by inadequate sleep.
  • Avoid caffeine late at night. Caffeine can cause a racing ADHD brain to grow more excitable and alert. Caffeine is also a diuretic, although not as potent as experts once thought, and may cause sleep disruptions brought on by needing to go to the bathroom. It is a good strategy to avoid consuming any liquids shortly before bedtime.

Treatment Options for ADHD-Related Sleep Problems

If the patient spends hours a night with thoughts bouncing and his body tossing, this is probably a manifestation of ADHD. The best treatment is a dose of stimulant-class medication 45 minutes before bedtime. This course of action, however, is a hard sell to patients who suffer from difficulty sleeping. Consequently, once they have determined their optimal dose of medication, I ask them to take a nap an hour after they have taken the second dose.

Generally, they find that the medication’s “paradoxical effect” of calming restlessness is sufficient to allow them to fall asleep. Most adults are so sleep-deprived that a nap is usually successful. Once people see for themselves, in a “no-risk” situation, that the medications can help them shut off their brains and bodies and fall asleep, they are more willing to try medications at bedtime. About two-thirds of my adult patients take a full dose of their ADHD medication every night to fall asleep.

What if the reverse clinical history is present? One-fourth of people with ADHD either don’t have a sleep disturbance or have ordinary difficulty falling asleep. Stimulant-class medications at bedtime are not helpful to them. Dr. Brown recommends Benadryl, 25 to 50 mg, about one hour before bed. Benadryl is an antihistamine sold without prescription and is not habit-forming. The downside is that it is long-acting, and can cause sleepiness for up to 60 hours in some individuals. About 10 percent of those with ADHD experience severe paradoxical agitation with Benadryl and never try it again.

Experts point out that sleep disturbances in people diagnosed with ADHD are not always due to ADHD-related causes. Sometimes patients have a co-morbid sleep disorder in addition to ADHD. Some professionals will order a sleep study for their patients to determine the cause of the sleep disturbance. Such tests as a Home Sleeping Test, Polysomnogram, or a Multiple Sleep Latency Test may be prescribed. If there are secondary sleep problems, doctors may use additional treatment options to manage sleep time challenges.

The next step up the treatment ladder is prescription medications. Most clinicians avoid sleeping pills because they are potentially habit-forming. People quickly develop tolerance to them and require ever-increasing doses. So, the next drugs of choice tend to be non-habit-forming, with significant sedation as a side effect. They are:

  • Melatonin. This naturally occurring peptide released by the brain in response to the setting of the sun has some function in setting the circadian clock. It is available without prescription at most pharmacies and health food stores. Typically the dosage sizes sold are too large. Almost all of the published research on Melatonin is on doses of 1 mg or less, but the doses available on the shelves are either 3 or 6 mg. Nothing is gained by using doses greater than one milligram. Melatonin may not be effective the first night, so several nights’ use may be necessary for effectiveness.
  • Periactin. The prescription antihistamine, cyproheptadine (Periactin), works like Benadryl but has the added advantages of suppressing dreams and reversing stimulant-induced appetite suppression.
  • Clonidine. Some practitioners recommend in a 0.05 to 0.1 mg dose one hour before bedtime. This medication is used for high blood pressure, and it is the drug of choice for the hyperactivity component of ADHD. It exerts significant sedative effects for about four hours.
  • Antidepressant medications, such as trazodone (Desyrel), 50 to 100 mg, or mirtazapine (Remeron), 15 mg, used by some clinicians for their sedative side effects. Due to a complex mechanism of action, lower doses of mirtazapine are more sedative than higher ones. More is not better. Like Benadryl, these medications tend to produce sedation into the next day, and may make getting up the next morning harder than it was.

Problems Waking Up with ADHD

Problems in waking and feeling fully alert can be approached in two ways. The simpler is a two-alarm system. The patient sets a first dose of stimulant-class medication and a glass of water by the bedside. An alarm is set to go off one hour before the person actually plans to rise. When the alarm rings, the patient rouses himself enough to take the medication and goes back to sleep. When a second alarm goes off, an hour later, the medication is approaching peak blood level, giving the individual a fighting chance to get out of bed and start his day.

A second approach is more high-tech, based on evidence that difficulty waking in the morning is a circadian rhythm problem. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the use of sunset/sunrise-simulating lights can set the internal clocks of people with Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome. As an added benefit, many people report that they sharpen their sense of time and time management once their internal clock is set properly. The lights, however, are experimental and expensive (about $400).

Disturbances of sleep in people with ADHD are common, but are almost completely ignored by our current diagnostic system and in ADHD research. These patterns become progressively worse with age. Recognition of sleep disturbance in ADHD has been hampered by the misattribution of the difficulty falling asleep to the effects of stimulant-class medications. We now recognize that sleep difficulties are associated with ADHD itself, and that stimulant-class medications are often the best treatment of sleep problems rather than the cause of them.

[Read This Next: Tired of Feeling Tired? How to Solve Common Sleep Problems]

William Dodson, M.D., is a member of ADDitude’s ADHD Medical Review Panel.

29 Comments & Reviews

  1. I would like my husband to read this article, as it really describes the difficulties he experiences. Unfortunately , he does not have the patience, (for want of a better word), to read what he would describe as a long article. I wondered if your articles could have summaries in short bullet points? He is very resistant to reading things that he is not very interested in, and this would include more or less anything other than specialist music magazines.

  2. I’m very thankful for this article. I’ve been struggling for 20 years.
    Tried a few of these things, but I now have some ADHD specific ideas. The standard “sleep hygiene” process doesn’t work for me.
    Starting work at 8:30 was always a nightmare for me. Half the time I was 15-30 mins late and then working in a state of ‘jet-lag’ until lunchtime.

    I think I need one of the medical options to ‘knock me out’ at an appropriate time, but not make me lethargic all the time.
    My old psychiatrist gave me Endep to use, problem was it made me sleep for 16 hours a day in the end.

    My new psychiatrist that I just saw this week is going to a conference soon. Apparently there’s a new drug for ADHD and sleep.
    He’s going to talk to the expert about it before considering it for me.

  3. I’m surprised Strattera wasn’t mentioned. The first difference I noticed was my brain actually shut down when I went to bed. I was leery of stimulants and even though Strattera was said to be less effective, I think the fact that it’s 24/7 makes up for it, both because it doesn’t wear off at bed time so I can rest better, and because it’s a constant. Glad I tried it first because I might still be struggling with insomnia.

  4. I have always had the worst time waking in the morning and never understood why I could never really start to be productive until after 9pm.

    I’m wondering if anyone else experiences the same issue as I do.
    I can take medication that states it will make you drowsy, like gravol or Benadryl, but instead I seem to be more awake/hyper in some cases.

    There are some medications that can make me drowsy but it isn’t consistent. One day it will and then the next it won’t. I have even fallen asleep drinking coffee.

    This article touch on falling asleep while driving and I always found it odd when I was in university that I was more prone to get drowsy behind the wheel during the day then at night. At night it was more common that I would just drive home on auto pilot.

  5. This article is both interesting and disturbing,
    As an adult with ADHD and RLS, which is co-morbid for many of us, chronic insomnia is a constant drain on energy and often a full-stop on a constructive life.
    However, please be aware that, if you have RLS, melatonin, anti-histamines and SSRIs are absolutely contra-indicated.
    As this co-morbidity is common, it would be best that the article add these caveats as serious issues in the treatment of insomnia.

  6. Benedryl may be over the counter, but it isn’t necessarily a benign medication for anyone with comorbidities. It has anticholinergic properties, which have been implicated in dementia and, as the article rightly points out, can cause extremely unpleasant side effects in sensitive populations.

    Please don’t take Benedryl or its generic equivalent, diphendydramine, without consulting a psychiatrist. It’s not a safe sleep aid (or a safe antihistamine) for people with depression or bipolar disorder, for elderly people, for people taking contraindicated medications, for people with conditions like glaucoma or thyroid problems, for people taking too many other anticholinergic medications, and on and on.

    This article should have given more information and caveats before mentioning an OTC option that has so many strikes against it for so many patients.

    1. Thanks, Elemele, for strengthening my own caveats. Articles that are not thoroughly researched can do harm and cause suffering. OTC medications are particularly problematic, because of their apparently benign nature.

  7. I’ve always been tired. My Mum would obsess that I was anaemic (which I was once when I was about 14), but I’ve often had trouble falling asleep. I’ve never thought about it much because I just thought it was me, same as most of my symptoms. I obsess about all sorts of things. If I’ve had a confrontation or a problem that day, or I think I’ve upset someone or I’ve had an embarrassing moment I will go over and over it in my head. Sometimes I just think horrible thoughts, as if my mind hates me. At times my brain switches on and I want to listen to music at midnight, so instead of going to sleep I’m listening to music till 3am completely awake and wanting to go out dancing.

    I also think I get very tired when I’ve had a busy day. I’ve just realised that my mind must go into overdrive throughout the day just trying to function like everyone else, which leaves me exhausted. Add some sleep issues into the mix, and we have a right party going on!

  8. It’s the sleep of the dead bit I’m most interested in, it’s what I was looking for on here and must admit I’m guilty of the unintentional skipping several bits for disinterest so may have missed it.

    I quite often struggle to fall asleep but find guided meditation useful (must be guided to remind me what I’m meant to be doing) and once my mind slows enough I drift off, rarely getting to the end of a good meditation. However, often when I do asleep, nothing, literally NOTHING will wake me. I even slept through a lightening strike hitting the house as a baby which, according to my mom, sounded like a bomb going off in the house. More recently I fell so asleep in my tiny little campervan (literally slightly smaller than a double bed and which wobbles madly at the slightest touch) that I didn’t even notice my boyfriend letting himself in, getting changed for bed and lying down next to me. He literally would have been all but treading on my to do it and the van would’ve been rocking a lot. Me, not a clue – thank God it was my boyfriend!

    So does anyone know what this actually is, how common it is, causes etc.? Links to articles specifically about this ‘sleep of the dead’ would be appreciated, thanks.

  9. Wow, this article seem like a biography of mine.
    Thank you for sharing 🙂 Now I know that’s not completely my fault not to get asleep at night!

  10. Slept a lot yesterday. Slept a lot today. Woke up and decided to search for information about sleep and ADD. Have known about my ADD for years and am on medication for it. What’s working for me now is having a night job instead of a day job. I work on a printing press. I sometimes yawn a lot while I’m there, but that’s about it. Been there almost three years. I’ve learned a lot, taken on more responsibility and gotten raises. But I’m young and single, which is much more common than it used to be, yet I still feel a kind of self-imposed(?) stigma.

  11. I feel like an anomaly. I do have the boredom induced sleepiness which makes me crazy because there are times I really want to get something done but feel like crashing. I plan to add a workout to help with energy because drinking caffeine just makes me sleepy.
    At night I will sometimes play a game on my phone to fall asleep, which is the opposite of what “experts” recommend. (I do have a filter on my phone for at night) I usually fall asleep before even finishing one level. Then I will sleep for 3 hours, get up to use the bathroom, then sleep another 3 hours.
    I learned from Mel Robbins that our sleep patterns are 90 minutes long and I noticed if I wake up 30 minutes before my alarm that I should just get up because falling back to sleep is just going to disrupt the REM cycle and I will be lagging for hours. So even though I average only 6 hours a night, I’m doing ok and I usually wake up on my own before my alarm goes off.

  12. Sunrise/set lamps are not that expensive any more. Cheapest I saw was $25. I purchased the Casper Glow Light for $140 CAD and find it easy to use. TBD on whether it helps me get to sleep and wake up more alert. (37yo F)

  13. Thank you for this article. I have moderate to severe ADHD Combination (Hyperactive/Inattentive). I am a 52 year old woman. I have always been a night owl and struggle to get to bed at a reasonable hour. I have always grinded my teeth at night and dreamt like a crazy person. Still to this day, my dreams are wild—I dream in color or black and white with specific things only a little color. I have soundtracks, I speaks some Spanish passably, but I dream fluently in Spanish, I have some really trippy dreams about weird worlds where dimension and proportions are not right spatially. My dreams have complex story lines that weave together completely disjointed worlds and narratives. It’s exhausting. You are supposed to secrete a chemical in your brain that blocks your dreams. I don’t think I have any of that chemical. I remember every dream. It’s exhausting. However, in from 1990-2002 I was a wildland firefighter and a hotshot for 4 of those years. Hotshots they estimate burn 10,000 -12,000 calories a day when actively fighting a fire and cutting handline. I was able to sleep on command because it was almost life or death, especially when we would not sleep for days or only get 3-4 hours of sleep for weeks on end. If we had to wait for a helicopter to pick us up or a dozer to build a safety zone on some other delay, I could sit down and sleep in about 2 minutes. Plus, working that hard, I was out the minute my head hit the pillow. So, going to sleep it not a problem for me. But waking up after feeling like I was running through a trippy world all night is exhausting.
    But thanks for posting about the Benadryl thing. I am part of the 10% that it majorly screws with and have had doctors look at me crazy when I tell them I can’t take it. I was pregnant and got a bad head cold and my Obstetrician told me to take Benadryl. It was the first time I took it in 1992. I could not wake up for 2 days—no joke. I was drugged out of my mind. I was so mad, because I thought: If this stuff drugs me that bad, what’s it doing to my baby? I also have huge issues with the cocktail of anesthesia they give most people for surgery. It makes me sick to my stomach and will take me many hours to days longer to wake up than most people–which pisses post-op nurses off. I now warn people. If you have a sensitivity to Benadryl, you may have a problem with anesthesia too, if you ever have to use it so, FYI. Thanks for including that in this story, I no longer will feel like I am weird when a doctor tells me to take Benadryl and then shames me when I say I can’t.

  14. This is a great resource for people about the ways ADHD impairs sleep. It’s interesting that you say many of your patients can’t fall asleep until 4am. One of the criteria for Restless Legs Syndrome is it goes away in the early morning hours, usually around 4am. I screen for RLS with every new patient. Benadryl can make RLS worse so that may account for the difference people experience.

    Another significant factor is the “second wind” – the bane of the existence of someone with ADHD whether they take medicine or not. It’s important for people to recognize when they’re sleepy (when their stimulant wears off at the end of the day) and go to bed before they push through the sleepiness and get a second wind.

    Thank you for this article. Sleep is extremely important for someone with ADHD and they need to realize they can do something about it instead of saying, “I’ve just always been a bad sleeper.”

  15. finally they seem to be starting to get it… But sleep hygiene does not work for me, and caffeine actually helps me to get to sleep faster (probably because of the “paradoxical effect” of caffeine). I wish that they would get that sleep hygiene does not always work for people with ADHD. Probably they use the wrong studies because it is really hard for people with ADHD to consistently practice sleep hygiene. So the doctors just assume that they are like the rest of the patients and tell them to practice it, and it’s their own fault if they can’t sleep and they don’t. Well, I had to change Psychiatrists 3 times and every time I couldn’t sleep for a year, because I had to prove to them that practicing sleep hygiene doesn’t work. And I really had to prove to them that I was practicing it. And eventually I got the meds I needed.
    So I know they just haven’t understood yet.
    I really need them also to understand the paradoxical effect of sugar. It also effects sleep hygiene. A little sugar at night an it talks half the time to go to sleep. I think it’s just not true what all these mothers say about sugar winding up their ADHD kids. There are no serious studies that support this notion. I think people just subconsciously want to believe that, so they feel a little better about all the rough time their kids are giving them. Kind of like a subconscious “punishment”

  16. I would like to extend a word of caution with the “two-alarm system” discussed near the end of the article. To review, the two-alarm system is: when “the patient sets a first dose of stimulant-class medication and a glass of water by the bedside. An alarm is set to go off one hour before the person actually plans to rise. When the alarm rings, the patient rouses himself enough to take the medication and goes back to sleep. When a second alarm goes off, an hour later, the medication is approaching peak blood level, giving the individual a fighting chance to get out of bed and start his day”.
    I did this for a number of years. What began happening is that if I didn’t take my medication before wakening, I couldn’t wake up enough to be able to get out of bed and have any productivity whatsoever. I am talking extreme sleepiness where I couldn’t function at all. I found this out after I was taken off of the medication. I went to the doctor because it was that bothersome. After having saliva tests to determine my cortisol levels, I found out that my adrenals no longer were releasing cortisol in the AM which is an important part of our waking cycles. Known as cortisol rhythm, the rise and fall of this stress hormone is crucial for helping you wake up in the morning. In the early morning, your body’s cortisol production naturally surges and transitions you into wakefulness. Amphetamines raise cortisol levels, so when taking the medication an hour before wanting to wake up, my adrenal glands stopped naturally releasing cortisol in the AM, because it was being raised by the amphetamine. It took me months before my adrenals began releasing cortisol naturally again in the AM. I am not saying that this will happen to you, but I at least wanted to tell my story in case this is happening or happens to you.

  17. I found this article interesting but do have concerns with the recommendation to take Benadryl. Research has linked long term use of Benadryl with dementia.

    A team led by Shelley Gray, a pharmacist at the University of Washington’s School of Pharmacy, tracked nearly 3,500 men and women ages 65 and older who took part in Adult Changes in Thought (ACT), a long-term study conducted by the University of Washington and Group Health, a Seattle healthcare system….When the researchers examined the use of anticholinergic drugs, they found that people who used these drugs were more likely to have developed dementia as those who didn’t use them. Moreover, dementia risk increased along with the cumulative dose. Taking an anticholinergic for the equivalent of three years or more was associated with a 54% higher dementia risk than taking the same dose for three months or less.

    https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/common-anticholinergic-drugs-like-benadryl-linked-increased-dementia-risk-201501287667

  18. I’ve found a Bluetooth sleep mask and the Calm app – which has a wide range of Sleep Stories – very helpful.

    I save the one where the narrator reads from the GDPR introduction (UK regulations concerning maintaining personal privacy in data processing) for particularly bad nights.

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