Let’s Talk About Sleep!
Do you toss and turn, with your mind racing, before you finally fall asleep? Do you wake up in the middle of the night, unable to fall back asleep? Do you wake up feeling exhausted?
Why is this?! Drum roll please……. *Stress and Cortisol*
Stress has a profound impact on our stress-coping giant, cortisol. Cortisol is the boss of our stress-response team- which also includes adrenaline and endorphin. Chronic, excessive stress can lead to a permanent hyper-cortisol state. What does that mean? Even after your “stressful events” have passed, your cortisol levels can stay elevated.
The ability to enter REM sleep cycles and to experience regenerative sleep are interrupted by high cortisol values at night and in the morning. Chronic lack of REM sleep can reduce a person’s mental vitality, vigor, and induce depression.
At night, cortisol levels should be at their lowest. When your cortisol levels remain elevated before bed, you sleeping issues ensue. This results in: insomnia, feeling agitated and/or hyper-vigilant, sudden awakening, etc. Chronically elevated cortisol suppresses serotonin and exhausts GABA.
Having decreased serotonin and decreased GABA is a HUGE deal.
Serotonin impacts every part of your body. (Read that again) From your emotions to your motor skills- serotonin is vital player. It’s considered the “happy hormone”, because it contributes to overall well-being and happiness.
Fun Fact: about 95% of the serotonin in your body is produced in the lining of your gastrointestinal (GI) tract? Another reason why a healthy gut microbiome is key!
Serotonin deficiency is associated with several psychological symptoms- including but not limited to:
Serotonin deficiency is associated with several physical symptoms due to its vital role in many body functions- including but not limited to:
GABA is the most common neurotransmitter in the central nervous system, it reduces brain activity in the areas of the brain responsible for:
Essentially, GABA limits nerve transmission, which prevents nervous activity. GABA deficiency is associated with several symptoms over several systems- including but not limited to:
Now, listed above is a lot of potential symptoms- and is honestly, a little overwhelming.
Bottom line: if you are struggling with your quality of sleep, please contact us today! There is hope and we are here to help.
At Stittleburg Restorative Health, we utilize an Adrenal Stress Index test that is done from the convenience of your own home- through saliva! That’s right, it can be shipped right to your door and you don’t need to be poked/prodded by a needle. Saliva testing specifically measures free, unbound hormone levels. This eliminates the need to estimate how much circulating hormone is present in a patient’s body.
The highest form of happiness is health,
Dr. Taryn Stittleburg, DC, CFMP, PSc.D