What is Testosterone and why does it cause insomnia?

As we know, Testosterone is a sex hormone that is most commonly associated with men and when testosterone levels fall you may notice a plethora of symptoms including insomnia, that we will deal with in this chapter.

Many men with reduced testosterone report difficulties in sleeping, either with falling asleep or with staying asleep. They may also suffer from the serious condition sleep apnoea where they will actually stop breathing leading to further disruption to their sleep. In the most extreme cases sleep apnoea can be fatal.

It might not seem an obvious coupling, but testosterone levels and sleep problems do go together. There has been a lot of research into the area of lower testosterone levels and how they affect sleep. The science bit is that testosterone production reaches its peak during the sleeping hours, so it follows that if you are not sleeping well you are losing those precious hours of testosterone production and your testosterone levels will drop. I know this sounds like a bit of a no-win situation where the low testosterone production leads to insomnia and then insomnia leads to low testosterone production, but there is something you can do about it.

Sometimes it can be difficult to diagnose low testosterone because the symptoms of tiredness and fatigue and insomnia can be attributed to many other causes. What has been observed is that lowered testosterone seems to have a link to a lower quality of sleep and to fewer of the deep cycles of sleep that are so essential to us. Additionally it has been proved that as testosterone levels decrease levels of the hormone cortisol will increase. Cortisol is actually responsible for waking us up and giving us the ability to have a short sleep that is shallower such as when we are napping or as the time gets closer for us to wake up.

All is not lost however because there are ways that you can improve and mitigate the cycles of poor sleeping patterns that are related to low testosterone. The benefits of better sleep will lead to testosterone levels increasing. If you are carrying a substantial amount of extra weight, then this can also lead to poor sleep. This is because sleep apnoea will interrupt a sleep pattern and this should be addressed initially. Here are some useful other tips on what you can do to help to improve your sleeping patterns.

Firstly you should be consistent. varying your time of going to bed and getting up will do you no favours and you should aim to make sure that you get at least a regular seven hours a night. The best way to develop this kind of sleeping pattern is to go to bed and get up at the same time every day, and that includes weekends. Establishing a pattern like this will go a long way towards helping to get those healthy, testosterone production boosting, sleeping hours in place.

As far as possible, you should resist the mid-afternoon dip that we commonly experience where all you want to do is close your eyes and have a nap. Sleeping during the day could have a negative effect on the amount of sleep you are able to have at night.

Making sure that your bedroom is cool and well ventilated will help you by providing an ideal environment in which you can get some good and restful sleep. The ideal temperature for your bedroom should be between 60- and 67-degree Fahrenheit.

Make sure that your bedroom is dark and quiet and you don’t have any distractions such as glowing lights from radios, et cetera that will detract from a perfect sleeping environment.

Make sure that you don’t drink any stimulating drinks such as coffee and alcohol after three o’clock in the afternoon. If you smoke, try to give up but as a start, make sure that you are smoking less in the hours before bed.

For an hour before you go to bed each night, turn off all your devices to limit your exposure to the blue light that they emit. Never look at your mobile phone or any other device if you wake up during the night. This is because the blue light that is emitted gives a signal to your brain that is time to wake up.

Eat well. Make sure there is a lot of fresh fruit and veg in your diet and have a look at what you are eating in general.

Playing video games is another thing that can stimulate your brain so you need to limit the time that you spend playing them as much as possible. Even in the hours long before bedtime, they have the effect of reducing the amount of time you are likely to be able to achieve a good, deep and restful sleep.

I have mentioned sleep apnoea before. This is a very serious condition that will need medical intervention. If you think that you are suffering from sleep apnoea, during the night, you should go and see your doctor about it. One thing that will definitely help in respect to sleep apnoea, is to lose weight and to stop smoking.

Always try to spend some time outside every day, even a regular 10-minute walk will yield benefits in respect to how well you sleep. Being active outdoors is not only good for your health it’s also good for your sleep patterns, when you are suffering from low testosterone levels.

Suffering from low testosterone production will always have some physical manifestations but where insomnia is concerned, there are these steps that you can take yourself to help you achieve a good night’s sleep.