Are you victim to the vicious sleep cycle

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FEELING exhausted night after night but as soon as your head hits the pillow, feel as though you are wide awake? You are not alone and according to sleep experts, the phenomenon is actually a learned disorder with the brain reliving previous sleepless nights.

Experts say it is called ‘conditional arousal’ and is a vicious circle meaning the more nights you spend tossing and turning in bed unable to sleep, the more likely the brain is going to associate going to bed with staying awake.

Equally, for those who are good sleepers, going to bed each night triggers the auto response of sleepiness and will help you easily drift off to sleep.

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For sufferers, there are some ways to help remedy the negative cycle. Some recommend cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia (CBT-I), which works by changing the thoughts and behaviours which affect sleep. Caffeine and alcohol should be avoided and turn down the lights before bed to start getting the brain into sleep mode. Also avoid computers, tablets and mobiles before bedtime as the blue light they give off suppresses the production of melatonin which helps you to sleep.

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