Winter’s Yawn: Why do we Feel more Sleepy in Winter?

Winter is the season of wearing warm clothes, enjoying hot dishes and sleeping in the warmth of quilts. But do you know why we all get more sleepy in winter season?

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In the cold season, the fun of sleeping under the quilt is something else, as soon as the temperature starts falling, we all feel like locking ourselves in the house and sleeping. There is less sunlight at this time, due to which we prefer to stay at home instead of going out. However, this does not happen only with you, in winter we all become lazy, and also sleep a lot.

In fact, winter weather affects our circadian rhythm. The circadian sleep cycle is our body’s programming that tells us when to sleep and when to wake up. Humans usually sleep when it gets dark and there is no sunlight. During winter the nights are long and we do not feel that we have slept for a long time. Due to excessive sleeping, we remain lazy and lethargic, but have you ever wondered why we sleep more in winter?

Let us know why do we feel more sleepy in winter? What is the reason for this? What are some side effects of sleeping too much on our body? How to get rid of laziness in winter?

Increased Levels of Melatonin: Melatonin, also known as sleep hormone, is a hormone that is released from the pineal gland in the body. This hormone is helpful in getting sleep. This hormone removes free radicals from the body. It is believed that light and darkness regulate our sleep patterns. Whenever a particular part of the brain comes in contact with light, this hormone suddenly becomes active. Melatonin controls body temperature and hormones. Due to these three, sleep in the body is affected. Melatonin hormone promotes sleep.

Vitamin D Deficiency: There is often difficulty in waking up in the morning during the winter season. Actually, in winter season the days are short and nights are long. Due to not getting much sunlight, there can be deficiency of Vitamin D in the body. Due to which we start feeling more lazy and sleepy in this season.

Warmth of the Body: When it gets cold, we all cover ourselves up. Too cold or too hot temperatures can disrupt your sleep process. Messing too much with the temperature in your home can get in the way of this process.

Cold Outside Environment: When the temperature rises in summer, sleeping becomes challenging and you spend time tossing and turning in bed. You keep looking for ways to relieve and fight that suffocating heat. To sleep your body has to cool down. Therefore, the cold environment of winter season can be helpful for your sleep.

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Comfort Eating: If we use such things more in winter, it not only keeps the body warm but also keeps it energetic. Eating comfort food or eating in large quantities takes away your body’s energy from digesting that food and makes you feel more lazy or tired.

Obesity: Sleeping too much can make your weight increase rapidly. According to a report, people who sleep 9-10 hours have 20% more chances of becoming obese compared to those who sleep 7-8 hours. This is because you are not able to burn your calories due to less active period. Due to which you may become obese.

Headache: Sleeping too much increases the risk of headaches in some people. Doctors believe it affects other neurotransmitters in the brain, including serotonin. People who sleep more during the day and suffer from irregular sleep at night may suffer from headaches in the morning.

Back Pain: Sleeping for too long and lying down continuously can cause back pain. So remember that when you experience back pain, you should practice some physical exercises instead of oversleeping.

Depression: However, less sleep or insomnia is more associated with depression. But about 15% of people with depression sleep too much. This in turn worsens their depressive condition. This is because to cure this disorder you have to follow a healthy and regular sleeping pattern. Sleeping too much makes your body feel lethargic and your mind depressed. To get out of this you need to be socially active.

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Risk of Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes: Studies also show that sleeping too much can cause heart diseases because your heart does not function properly due to sleeping too much and not doing any physical exercise. Due to which you may suffer from diseases like coronary heart disease and diabetes.

According to science, we can control our mind in many ways. With its help you can also avoid laziness in winter:

  • Get into the routine of drinking water before bedtime and have a cup of hot water right after waking up in the morning. Drinking water will keep your stomach clean and it will be easier for your body to wake up.
  • Let light come into your room during the day, remove curtains from windows and doors.
  • To prevent the body from becoming lazy due to winter, do regular exercise.
  • No matter how cold it is, do not eat food sitting on the bed, always sit at the dining table.
  • If you are in office, then walk for 10 minutes every half-hour.
  • Take a bath shortly after getting up from bed, this will change your body temperature and you will feel active.
  • We feel less thirsty in cold, so do not forget to drink water.
  • Take only 8 hours of sleep even during holidays, so that your sleep cycle does not get disturbed.
  • To avoid laziness, eat healthy and light food.
  • Eat healthy food, include seasonal fruits and vegetables in your diet.
  • Try to set your body clock by sleeping and waking up at the same time for a few days in a row.
  • Control sweet cravings in winter because excess sugar gives you energy only for a short time but later causes fat gain.
  • Sit in the sun every day to get Vitamin D.

Is it normal to sleep more in the winter?

In winter, when there’s less sunlight, our body makes more of a sleepy hormone called melatonin. This can make us want to sleep more. Also, when it’s cold outside, we might feel like staying in bed longer. So, in winter, it’s pretty normal to feel like sleeping more.

What temperature is best for sleeping?

The ideal temperature for sleeping usually falls between 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit (15 to 19 degrees Celsius). This range tends to promote better sleep because it helps your body cool down, which is conducive to falling asleep and staying asleep comfortably. However, individual preferences may vary, so finding a temperature that feels most comfortable for you is essential for quality rest.

How do I stop oversleeping and laziness?

Combat oversleeping and laziness by establishing a consistent sleep routine with set wake-up times and ensuring an adequate duration of sleep. Introduce physical activity to increase energy levels and enhance sleep quality. Break tasks into smaller goals to overcome inertia and maintain a balanced diet for sustained energy. Seek support if these feelings persist, as they may indicate an underlying issue that requires attention.

Is it unhealthy to sleep more than 8 hours?

Consistently sleeping more than 8 hours a night can sometimes indicate underlying health issues, but it’s not necessarily unhealthy for everyone. Individual sleep needs vary, and while 7-9 hours is the general recommendation for adults, some may require more sleep due to factors like age, lifestyle, or certain health conditions. However, consistently oversleeping might be linked to issues like depression, sleep disorders, or other medical conditions. It’s essential to pay attention to how you feel during the day; if you’re regularly oversleeping and feeling excessively tired or groggy, consulting a healthcare professional is advisable to rule out any underlying health concerns.

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