How Many Times Is It Normal to Wake Up at Night?

“Normal” has some wiggle room here.

By Nina Bahadur, SELF

Waking up in the middle of the night can be a real drag. One minute you’re dreaming about an amazing breakfast sandwich, the next you’re wide awake, disoriented, and dismayed to see that it’s only 3 A.M.

Nighttime wake-ups, also known as “nocturnal awakenings,” are pretty common. For a 2010 study in Psychosomatic Research, researchers interviewed 22,740 people about their sleep habits, finding that 31.2 percent of participants reported waking up at least three nights per week. And in a 2008 Journal of Psychiatric Research study of 8,937 people, 23 percent said they woke up at least once every night.

If this sounds a lot like your sleep experience, should you be concerned?

Waking up in the middle of the night isn’t automatically something to worry about.

It might feel like “good sleep” means not waking up at all until your alarm goes off, but that’s not true. Waking up at night can be normal. It’s the cause and frequency that help determine whether or not there’s actually a problem.

A loud noise outside, anxiety, needing to pee, and medical conditions like sleep apnea, restless legs syndrome, and an overactive thyroid can all cause nighttime wake-ups. (Here’s more information about how those can all wake you up, if you’re curious.)

Because there are so many different things that can wake you up, there’s no specific number of awakenings that is a cause for concern, Brandon Peters, M.D., a board-certified neurologist and sleep medicine specialist, tells SELF. “[The number can] vary night by night due to different reasons,” he says. Some of those reasons are NBD.

It’s really common to wake up briefly in certain stages of sleep, which you may or may not even remember.

When you’re asleep, you cycle through different sleep stages called 1, 2, 3, 4, and REM sleep (though some schools of thought combine stages 3 and 4 as one).

According to the National Sleep Foundation, stage 1 is the lightest phase of sleep. In that time, your arousal threshold is lowest, meaning it may be easy for noise, light, or some other environmental factor to wake you up.

Your dozing gets deeper in each progressive stage until you reach REM sleep, where your muscles are pretty much paralyzed and most of your dreaming occurs. Once a REM sleep segment is complete, you cycle back to stage 1. This process usually takes around 90 minutes, so if you shoot for eight hours of sleep each night, you’ll likely go through around five full sleep cycles.

Dr. Peters tells SELF that people often wake up between sleep cycles when their arousal threshold is low, but these awakenings are super short, and you might not remember them in the morning. “It is normal to roll over, adjust the covers, or to even respond to noises in the environment,” he says.

If you wake up in the middle of the night and struggle to get back to sleep, though, you might be experiencing middle-of-the-night insomnia.

Regularly waking up for at least 20 to 30 minutes at night might be a sign that you have middle-of-the-night insomnia, Dr. Peters says, which can be distressing. “The major cause for concern that patients complain about is experiencing nighttime awakenings that keep them up,” Nesochi Okeke-Igbokwe, M.D., an internal medicine specialist, tells SELF. For some people, insomnia can be especially detrimental when it really starts edging into the seven to nine hours of sleep recommended for adults every night.

When you wake up and can’t get back to sleep, you might be tempted to watch the minutes tick away on a clock. Try not to do this, since worrying about not getting enough sleep could just make it harder to sleep, Dr. Peters says. Instead, he suggests setting an alarm before bed each night and covering it up so you can’t check the time: “If you wake at night and don't hear the alarm, it doesn't matter what time it is. You get to go back to sleep. This will reduce the likelihood that the awakening will start the mind racing and contribute to insomnia.”

Once you feel like a solid chunk of time has passed and you’re still not tired, get out of bed and do something relaxing, Dr. Peters says. Read a book, listen to music, or work on a puzzle. (Try to keep the lights low so you don’t throw off your circadian rhythm.) When you feel sleepy again, put yourself back to bed.

If you have to resort to these methods often, Dr. Okeke-Igbokwe says that your first step should be to assess your sleep hygiene practices. Are you sleeping in a cool, quiet, and dark room? Do you regularly go to bed and wake up at the same time? Do you cut yourself off from caffeine by mid-afternoon? Do you give yourself time to wind down and avoid screens before bed? If the answer to all those questions is “yes,” Dr. Okeke-Igbokwe recommends chatting with your doctor about other potential causes for your insomnia (like anxiety or stress) and how to treat them.

If you often wake up more than once a night to pee, you might need to reevaluate your fluid intake or see if there could be a medical cause.

It’s fine to need a bathroom trip every now and then in the middle of the night. But getting up to pee multiple times can be the result of drinking too much water, consuming alcohol before bed (as a diuretic, it can make you churn out more urine), or taking a medication that has the side effect of making you pee, like a high blood pressure drug that contains a diuretic.

It might also happen because of a condition like a urinary tract infection (UTI) that irritates your bladder or overactive bladder (when your muscles in the organ contract too much).

If you make some lifestyle tweaks such as not downing a glass of water before bed but you’re still waking up all the time to pee, see your primary care doctor or a specialist like a urologist for guidance.

Really, the biggest red flag surrounding nighttime wake-ups is feeling excessively sleepy during the day.

If you constantly feel wildly tired during the day no matter how many or few times you wake up at night, that is worth looking into. Excessive daytime sleepiness can be a sign of various issues, like sleep apnea, a condition in which your breathing repeatedly stops and starts while you sleep.

There’s obstructive sleep apnea, caused by your throat muscles relaxing; central sleep apnea, caused by your brain failing to send proper signals to your muscles to help you breathe; and complex sleep apnea, which is when someone has both obstructive and central sleep apnea. Waking up in the night while gasping for air or choking can happen with all forms of the condition, according to the Cleveland Clinic. So, if you have any number of nighttime wake-ups where you are struggling to breathe, talk to a doctor about that possibility.

The culprit here could also be something like asthma, which often gets worse at night. This can happen because increased nighttime levels of the stress hormone cortisol cause inflammation that makes your airways swell, prompting asthma symptoms such as coughing that wake you up. Or it could be because your bedroom and bed are full of allergens that inflame your asthma, like dust mites. Either way, nighttime asthma flares can lead to subpar sleep and a lot of daytime drowsiness.

Whatever is causing your excessive daytime sleepiness needs to be addressed. See a doctor for help.

The bottom line? There’s no magic number of nocturnal awakenings that is inherently problematic. Context matters, as do your energy levels throughout the day.

Look at the big picture view of your nocturnal awakenings, Dr. Okeke-Igbokwe says. Consider how many times you are waking up each night, yes, but also how long you’re awake, how much total time you spend awake each night, and how you feel the next day.

While frequent nighttime wake-ups might be no issue for some people, they can leave others feeling wretched. Don’t just accept feeling tired all the time—work with your doctor to figure out what’s interrupting your rest.

See more at: SELF


Made with in NYC

4th of July,7,Abu Dhabi,2,Accessories,84,Acne,3,Adventure,32,Adventure Travel,638,Advice,283,Africa,26,African Food,2,AIDS,1,Air Travel,150,Alabama,5,Alaska,20,Alberta,1,Alcohol,4,All About Beer,1,All About Wine,2,Alternative Treatments,4,America,77,American Food,5,Amsterdam,2,Android,11,Anguilla,3,Animal,367,Animal Health,1,Animals,69,Anniversary,1,Anniversary Cake,11,Antarctica,7,Antigua,3,Appetizers & Snacks,2,Apple,11,Apps,16,Argentina,15,Arizona,19,Arkansas,2,Armenia,1,Asia Travel,47,Asian Food,7,Asthma,4,Athens,3,Austin,8,Australia,92,Australian Food,1,Austria,13,Autism,1,Auto Insurance,1,Auto Show,52,Autos,970,Azerbaijan,1,Baby Shower Cake,29,Back Pain,25,Bahamas,13,Balance Work & Life,50,Banana Cakes,2,Bangladesh,8,Barn Finds,1,Bathroom,43,Be a Better Manager,33,Beach Travel,58,Beards and Shaving,29,Beef Recipes,7,Belarus,1,Belgium,9,Belize,15,Bermuda,5,Best Products,1,Better Partner,40,Beverages,3,Bhutan,9,Bills to Pay,35,Birds,4,Birth Control,1,Birthday Cake,109,Blue Lagoon,2,Blueberry Cake,11,Bolivia,3,Books,2,Botswana,3,Brazil,38,Bread,11,Breads,1,Break Room,12,Breakfast & Brunch,6,Breakup,19,Breakups,3,Broken Hearts,5,Brownie,8,Brunei,1,Budget Travel,97,Bundt Cake,30,Business Skills,102,Butter Cake,52,Buying,1,By Region,3,Cake Decorating,113,Cakes,54,California,109,Cambodia,4,Camera,6,Canada,80,Cancer,73,Car Shows,1,Car Tech,2,Caramel Cake,5,Career,86,Career Advice,298,Career Choice,125,Career Growth,180,Career Paths,24,Career Problem,8,Caribbean,45,Caribbean & Mexico,5,Carrot Cake,22,Cats,49,Celebrity,17,Celebs,1,Ceremonial Cake,9,Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles,1,Cheese Recipes,4,Cheesecakes,251,Chicago,7,Chicago Auto Show,2,Chicken Recipes,14,Chiffon Cake,5,Children's Health,21,Chile,7,China,21,Chocolate Cake,395,Christmas,35,Christmas Cake,23,Christmas Travel,14,Classic Cars,39,Cleaning Tips,144,Clinical Practice,1,Clothes,1,Cocktail Recipes,2,Coconut Cake,21,Coffee,1,Coffee Cake,15,Coliseum,1,Colombia,18,Colorado,32,Columbia,3,Communication,2,Companies,2,Compassion,2,Computing,16,Connecticut,4,Consumer Electronics Show,5,Cookies,10,Cooking,8,Corporate Travel,2,Costa Rica,13,Country Travel,249,Creative,309,Creative Idea,22,Creative Ideas,37,Croatia,15,Cruiser Travel,16,Cuba,18,Cultural Travel,66,Cupcake,322,Customs & Classics,2,Czech Republic,6,D.C.,2,Dandruff,1,Dating,18,Dating Advice,73,Dating Advice for Women,22,Dating Tips,13,Decor,23,Decorating Ideas,181,Delaware,1,Demotivational,636,Denmark,12,Dental Health,26,Dentistry,1,Depression,24,Desert Travel,1,Desserts,3,Detroit Auto Show,4,Diabetes,25,Diet,131,Dining Out,3,Dinner,14,Disease,116,Divorce,15,DIY,112,DIY Fashion,31,Dogs,156,Doughnuts,5,Dress,23,Drink,27,Drinks,1,Drinks & Cocktails,4,Driving,3,Drugs,3,Dubai,15,Ears,2,East Africa,4,Easter,1,Easter Island,1,Easter Travel,1,Eco Travel,18,Ecuador,7,Education,87,Eggs,3,Egypt,4,Electronics,4,Electronics and Gadgets,2,Emirates,1,England,13,Entertainment,148,Enthusiasts,131,Entrepreneurship,40,Estonia,2,Eswatini,1,Ethiopia,2,Europe,110,European Food,8,Exercises,51,Eye Health,28,Facts,284,Fall Travel,43,Family,16,Family Travel,128,Faroe Island,1,Fashion,126,Fashion for Kids,2,Fashion for Man,12,Fashion for Woman,31,Fat Loss,91,Father's Day Cake,4,Father's Day Travel,1,Featured,207,Features,1130,Festival Travel,25,Fiji,6,Finance,4,Finland,16,Fish & Seafood,13,Fitness,746,Fitness & Exercise,219,Florida,69,Food,611,Food and Drink,14,France,37,Frankfurt Motor Show,2,Free Travel,3,French,6,French Polynesia,5,Friendship,40,Fruit & Veggie Recipes,8,Fruitcake,70,Fruits,4,Fuel Economy,1,Funny,546,Gadgets,31,Galapagos,3,Games,12,Garden,24,Gardening,276,Gearheads,1,General,7,Geneva Motor Show,3,Georgia,14,Germany,18,Get Healthy,63,Ghana,2,Girlfriend Grooming,10,Google,15,Graduation Cake,2,Gratitude,11,Greece,37,Green Living,5,Greenland,1,Grooming,89,Guatemala,2,Hair,52,Hair Care,22,Hairstyle,65,Halloween,29,Halloween Cake,12,Halloween Travel,9,Happiness,19,Hawaii,53,Hayden Panettiere,1,Headache,22,Health,725,Health & Fitness,300,Health Care,466,Health Insurance,1,Healthcare Tech,6,Healthy,12,Healthy Eating,186,Healthy Habits,159,Healthy Living,179,Hearing,1,Hiking Travel,63,HIV/AIDS,4,Holiday Travel,28,Holland,1,home,31,Home & Garden,205,Home and Decor,484,Honeymoon Travel,128,Hong Kong,13,Horoscope,31,Hot Rod Power Tour,1,Hotels,71,Housekeeper,8,Hungary,3,Ice cream Cake,21,Iceland,41,Idaho,4,Ideas,11,Illinois,13,Imports,1,Impress a Girl,20,Impress Women,4,Independence Day Travel,1,India,36,Indiana,5,Indonesia,13,Indoor Gardening,69,Industry,5,Inspiration,58,Insurance,5,Internet,19,Internship,8,Interview Skills,37,Investing,12,iPad,2,iPhone,6,Iraq,1,Ireland,36,Island,60,islands,2,Israel,9,Italy,56,Jamaica,8,Japan,44,Jealousy,2,Job Search,47,Jordan,6,Just For Fun,2,Kansas,6,Kentucky,2,Kenya,2,Kids,127,Kids & Pets,10,Kitchen,67,Koala,1,Korea,2,Kyrgyzstan,1,Lamb,2,Laptops,4,Latin America,3,Latin American Food,1,Latvia,1,Laundry,6,Layer Cake,95,Leadership,44,Legs,1,Lemon Cake,18,Life,1,Life Hacks,244,LifeStyle,1302,Lithuania,2,London,24,Long Distance Relationship,24,Los Angeles Auto Show,14,Louisiana,9,Love,130,Lowa,4,Lunch,5,Luxembourg,1,Luxury Travel,35,Maine,6,Maintenance,3,Makeup & Beauty,11,Malaysia,1,Maldives,15,Malta,2,Mango Cake,3,Marketing,10,Markets,11,Marriage,97,Marshmallow,3,Maryland,6,Massachusetts,9,Massage,5,Mauritius,6,Meditation,29,Men & Women,18,Men's,8,Men's Health,14,Mental Health,294,Mexico,74,Miami,13,Michigan,5,Microsoft,6,Middle Eastern Food,2,Mind,3,Mississippi,2,Missouri,7,Mobile,22,Moldova,1,Monaco,1,Money,264,Money & Career,21,Monkey,1,Montana,12,Morocco,20,Mother's Day Travel,1,Motivation,2,Motorcycles,106,Motorsports,2,Mousse,2,Muffins,9,Mug Cake,14,Multiple Sclerosis,1,Muscle Cars,4,Muscle Cars & Hot Rods,3,Muscle Gain,2,Myanmar,9,Namibia,4,Nature,4,Nature Travel,102,Nepal,6,Netherlands,11,Nevada,23,Nevis,1,New Bikes,2,New Car Deals,1,New England,5,New Jersey,2,New Mexico,6,New Year Fashion,6,New Year's Day Travel,6,New York,55,New York Auto Show,3,New York City,20,New Zealand,47,Newfoundland,1,Newlyweds,4,News,334,Nicaragua,2,North America,11,North Carolina,6,North Dakota,1,North Ireland,1,Northern Ireland,1,Norway,20,Nutrition,447,Occasional Travel,9,Oceania,1,Offbeat,1028,Ohio,6,Oman,5,Online Date Tips,2,Operating Systems,2,Oral,4,Oregon,10,outdoor,3,Ownership,61,Pain,24,Painting,16,Pakistan,2,Panama,5,Pancake,19,Panda,1,Panna Cotta,3,Paraguay,1,Parenting,370,Paris,23,Paris Motor Show,4,Pasta,2,Pastry,7,Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance,2,Penguin,4,Pennsylvania,10,Personal Finance,164,Peru,21,Pets,553,Phoenix,1,Photo Feature,1,Pie,27,Plum Cake,1,Poke Cake,10,Poland,3,Popular Ingredients,26,Pork Recipes,7,Portable Media,14,Portugal,21,Pound Cake,55,Prague,1,Pregnancy,72,Premium,1,Printer,2,Protein Bars,1,Psychology,1,Pudding,9,Puerto Rico,7,Pumpkin Cake,45,Qatar,6,Quick & Easy Recipes,11,Real Estate,72,Recalls,4,Recipe,1097,Recipes,52,Recipes & Meal Ideas,3,Recipes By Course,5,Relationship,167,Relationship Advice,180,Relationship Advice for Men,23,Relationship Advice for Women,27,Relationship Problems,58,Relationship Secrets,14,Relationships,209,Research,94,Resort,11,Restaurants & News,13,Resume,11,Retirement,10,Reviews,1,Rhode Island,2,River Travel,2,Road Trips,49,Romania,4,Romantic Getaways,15,Rome,5,Russia,16,Safety,5,Saint Lucia,1,Saint Patrick's Day Travel,1,Salad,6,San Miguel de Allende,1,Scotland,10,Seasonal,56,Seasonal Travel,59,Security,9,Self Help,14,Self-Care,3,SEMA Show,5,Senior Relationship,2,Sex,7,Sexual Health,19,Shanghai Auto Show,7,Shaving,1,Sheet Cake,20,Shirt,4,Shoes,1,Shopping,10,Shots & Shooters,1,Side Dishes,4,Sightseeing Tours,2,Singapore,18,Ski Resorts,10,Skin Care,47,Sleep,62,Slovenia,6,Small Business,163,Smartphone,28,Smile,1,Smoothies & Juices,3,Snacks,1,Social Media,44,Solo Travel,24,Solomon Islands,1,Somoa,1,Soth Africa,1,South Africa,14,South America,3,South Carolina,4,South Dakota,5,South Korea,3,South Pacific,2,Space Travel,14,Spain,33,Special,46,Special Cake,579,Special Feature,113,Special Features,484,Sponge Cake,15,Sports and Exotics,4,Sports Cars,8,Spring Travel,23,Squirrel,1,Sri Lanka,6,Strawberry Cake,22,Stress Relief,35,Stroke,2,Student Travel,1,Style Guide,25,Summer Travel,53,Summer Vacation,8,Supercars,10,Sweden,19,Swiss Alps,1,Switzerland,20,Tahiti,1,Taiwan,3,Tanzania,1,Tarts,12,Taxes,7,Teas,2,Tech,89,Tech Advice,12,Tech Education,7,Tech Hacks,19,Tech Updates,2,Technology,434,Teen Advice,4,Teeth,5,Tennessee,6,Texas,57,Thailand,31,Thanksgiving Cake,4,Thanksgiving Travel,5,Therapy,3,Things to Do,165,Tibet,2,Tips,264,Tips & Tricks,6,Tokyo Motor Show,2,Tools & Skills,16,Top Stocks,1,Traditional Cake,4,Train Travel,23,Training,1,Transportation,22,Travel,515,Travel Advice,64,Travel Apps,1,Travel Guide,40,Travel Tips,149,Trends,7,Trucks,1,True Health,5,Tunisia,2,Turkey,10,Turkish,1,Tuscany,1,TV,2,UAE,10,UK,40,Ukrine,1,Understanding Women,28,Urban Travel,47,Uruguary,1,USA,629,Utah,12,Uzbekistan,1,Vacation Travel,245,Valentine's Day Cake,7,Valentine's Day Travel,1,Vanilla Cake,17,Vegetables,3,Vehicle Travel,2,Venezuela,1,Vermont,4,Victoria Falls,1,Vietnam,5,Virginia,5,Waffles,3,Washington,15,Washington DC,20,Web & Social,17,Wedding,14,Wedding Cake,549,Weddings,60,Weddings Travel,4,Weight Gain,23,Weight Loss,468,Weird,172,Wellness,75,West Indies,2,Wi-Fi,2,Wildlife Travel,13,Winter Travel,56,Wisconsin,5,Women Lifestyle,23,Women's,407,Women's Health,173,Work Environment,77,Workouts,81,Worldwide,155,Wyoming,2,xxx,1,Yemen,1,Yoga,58,YouTube,3,Zadar,2,Zambia,3,Zimbabwe,4,
Home Magazine: How Many Times Is It Normal to Wake Up at Night?
How Many Times Is It Normal to Wake Up at Night?
Home Magazine
Loaded All Posts Not found any posts VIEW ALL Read More Reply Cancel reply Delete By Home PAGES POSTS View All RECOMMENDED FOR YOU LABEL ARCHIVE SEARCH ALL POSTS Not found any post match with your request Back Home Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat January February March April May June July August September October November December Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec just now 1 minute ago $$1$$ minutes ago 1 hour ago $$1$$ hours ago Yesterday $$1$$ days ago $$1$$ weeks ago more than 5 weeks ago Followers Follow THIS PREMIUM CONTENT IS LOCKED STEP 1: Share to a social network STEP 2: Click the link on your social network Copy All Code Select All Code All codes were copied to your clipboard Can not copy the codes / texts, please press [CTRL]+[C] (or CMD+C with Mac) to copy