Sleep Apnea And/or Snoring
Sleep apnea disrupts sleep by causing repeated, short-lived breathing interruptions while a person snoozes. The condition is often marked by chronic, loud snoring, but not everyone who suffers from sleep apnea is a noisy sleeper.
Because the condition interferes with normal sleep and can wake a person several times during the night, its a major risk factor for morning headaches and fatigue. When your body doesnt get enough restful sleep, it boosts the production of pain-inducing proteins, which can both reduce your pain tolerance and trigger a headache.
If you think you might have sleep apnea, some treatments that can help, but youll need to see a doctor for a diagnosis. Your provider may recommend that you lose weight, avoid alcoholic beverages, or quit smoking to improve your condition. A continuous positive airway pressure machine can also help you breathe easier while you sleep.
The Importance Of Healthy Sleep
Behavioral sleep changes can promote restful, regular sleep and reduce headache. Simple changes like establishing consistent sleep and wake-up times, as well as getting between 7 and 8 hours of sleep a day, can make a world of difference. Experts also recommend avoiding substances that impair sleep, like caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol, and also suggest winding down before bed to prevent sleep problems. To hear about how members of our community stick to healthy sleep habits, read this article from our resource library.
From comorbidities to daily habits, many factors explain why a wide variety of sleep events trigger headache. Understanding your migraine and identifying simple lifestyle changes can make all the difference. As you embark on this journey, find the resources and support you need through our doctor-verified resource library and migraine support group.
Why Do People Sleep Too Much
For people who suffer from hypersomnia, oversleeping is actually a medical disorder. The condition causes people to suffer from extreme sleepiness throughout the day, which is not usually relieved by napping. It also causes them to sleep for unusually long periods of time at night. Many people with hypersomnia experience symptoms of anxiety, low energy, and memory problems as a result of their almost constant need for sleep.
Obstructive sleep apnea, a disorder that causes people to stop breathing momentarily during sleep, can also lead to an increased need for sleep. That’s because it disrupts the normal sleep cycle.
Of course, not everyone who oversleeps has a sleep disorder. Other possible causes of oversleeping include the use of certain substances, such as alcohol and some prescription medications. Other medical conditions, including depression, can cause people to oversleep. And then there are people who simply want to sleep a lot.
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You Might Not Be Sleeping Well
One theory is that youre not actually getting good rest, even if you sleep a lot. Those with untreated sleep apnea have a tendency to oversleep, and we know that undiagnosed and untreated sleep apnea leads to both heart disease and stroke, says Michael J. Breus, PhD, a California-based clinical psychologist known as The Sleep Doctor. He says that other problems like stomach upset or hot flashes could also be the cause of poor sleep, or your environment might not be dark or quiet enough. Even teeth grinding can affect your sleep. If you feel that youre still sleepy despite being in bed for a long time, talk to your doctor to tease out the cause. These are the signs of sleep apnea you need to know.
Causes Of Too Much Sleep: Why Am I Sleeping So Much
There are several underlying causes that may help explain why youre sleeping for an excessive amount of time. If you feel concerned about your sleeping habits and your sleep duration is negatively affecting your waking life, its a good idea to consult with your physician who can better guide you to sustainable solutions and treatment if necessary.
The risks of sleeping too much and conditions linked to oversleeping include:
If you consistently feel like youre oversleeping, or feel the need to oversleep to get the rest you need, its likely worth talking to your physician.While a select few of us really do require more sleep than most, if you are sleeping more than the recommended amount, a talk with your doctor is the best next step.
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Primary Headaches Vs Secondary Headaches
Primary headaches are a single issue and not the result of other medical problems. A migraine, cluster headache, or tension headache can occur from neck muscle pain, overactivity of the nerves, brain chemicals, or blood vessels. Primary headaches can also be hereditary.
Secondary headaches occur as a symptom of a current medical condition that activates pain-sensitive nerves in the head. A sinus infection, ear infection, flu, or any other illness has the potential to cause secondary headaches.
Excessive Sleeping Warning Signs
Sleep is important, but too much sleep on a regular basis isnt doing you any favors. According to the National Sleep Foundation, excessive sleeping may lead you to experience the following symptoms:
- Productivity issues
- Extreme sleepiness unresolved by napping
- Extreme fatigue unaffected by how much you sleep
If youre concerned about any excessive sleeping symptoms youre experiencing, a sleep expert or your doctor can guide you toward a solution. A medical professional can help you determine if your excessive sleeping is caused by a sleep disorder or your sleep habits.
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You Could Be At Greater Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes
Not surprisingly, given the link between longer sleep and obesity, type 2 diabetes is also more common among long sleepers. A study in 2015 published in Diabetes Care found that the risk of type 2 diabetes increased by 14 percent for every hour of sleep above seven hours per night. Very little is understood about mechanistic pathways linking long sleep and health outcomes, Dr. McDevitt says. These are 12 sleep disorders you need to know about.
Your Brain Wont Work As Well
Along with headaches, you may experience a foggy brain feeling if you get too much sleep. A 2014 study in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society showed that older women who slept more than nine hours had worse cognition, the equivalent of aging almost two years. Other research showed a connection between long sleep and later dementia, according to the Journal of the Alzheimers Association. Since sleep duration is linked with so many other factors that can also influence cognition, its likely that there are both direct and indirect effects of sleep duration on cognition, Dr. McDevitt says.
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Bruxism Or Teeth Grinding
Sleep bruxism, or teeth grinding or clenching during sleep, can make you wake up with a headache. This forceful and excessive movement also leads to tooth wear, muscle pain, and gum damage. Causes of sleep bruxism include having an irregularly shaped jaw, stress and anxiety, sleep disruption, alcohol use, and coffee.
A dentist can determine if you have sleep bruxism. Treatment often involves wearing a mouthguard at night. Your dentist may also prescribe drugs for pain management and recommend cognitive behavioral therapy to manage stress and anxiety.
Youre More Likely To Be Obese
Weight gain is another chicken-or-egg factor associated with long amounts of sleep. Research in Sleep Medicine Reviews in 2018 suggests that long sleep times may be linked with the development of both obesity and type 2 diabetes. One difficulty in untangling these effects is that things like sleep-disordered breathing, depression, or medication side effects can cause an increase in sleep duration and are also linked to other risk factors, such as weight gain, says Elizabeth McDevitt, PhD, a postdoctoral researcher at the Princeton Computational Memory Lab at Princeton University, New Jersey. But in this case, sleep could be both a cause and an effect. If youre spending more time in bed, youre not exercising or even moving around, so youre burning fewer calories.
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What Causes Oversleeping
Oversleeping can occur when you try to make up for your sleep debt. For example, you may have to stay up late several nights in a row to complete a big project and therefore become sleep deprived. Then, on the weekend you might make up the sleep debt by sleeping longer than normal.
A number of health conditions can also lead to oversleeping and excessive daytime sleepiness:
- Sleep disorders, including sleep apnea, insomnia, and narcolepsy
- Depression and anxiety
Sleep Loss And Insomnia
Because sleep deprivation is a common cause of morning headaches, people with insomnia also have a high risk of experiencing morning headaches. People with this sleep disorder struggle to fall asleep or to stay asleep. As a result, they often do not get sufficient sleep and may feel unrested or sluggish during the day.
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Youll Feel Jet Lagged
Sleeping too much may throw off your circadian rhythms, just as if youve been on a long plane trip. Dr. McDevitt says that these rhythms are controlled by our internal clock, the part of our brain that responds to light and dark signals. When light hits the eye, it signals to the internal clock that it is time to be awake, which will then begin a cascade of other processescontrol of hormones and body temperaturethat play a role in making us feel awake and allow us to function at our best throughout the day, she says. Oversleeping and other circadian disruptions, like jet lag or shift work, shift these light cues and put us in conflict with our normal daily rhythm. So how can you get back on track? Avoid screen time before bed, keep your room cool, quiet, and dark , and keep a regular sleep schedule. If you think you might have a medical issue thats causing long sleep, keep a sleep diary, and discuss the results with your doctor. Here are 19 more things you can do to sleep better tonight.
Snoring And Sleep Apnea
If a person snores regularly, they may be at higher risk of chronic headaches. Snoring is one of the main symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea, which is a condition that causes temporary pauses in breathing during sleep.
Sleep apnea disrupts sleep and often results in people waking with a headache and feeling unrested. Symptoms of sleep apnea include:
- pauses in breathing
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The Link Between Headaches And Sleep
A good nights sleep keeps us healthy and happy, and for headache sufferers, its particularly important. Irregular sleep patterns may trigger headaches in some and changes in sleep patterns may trigger migraines in some.
The linkbetween headaches and sleep has been known for decades, but what isnt clear is whether headaches cause disrupted sleep or whether headaches are a result of irregular sleep patterns.1 . Generally, alack of sleep is known to triggerheadaches and migrainesin some people.2In a large study of migraine sufferers, half said sleep disturbances contributed to their headaches. And those who slept only six hours a night on average had more frequent and more severe headaches than those who slept longer.3
But the opposite is also true. Too much sleep can trigger headaches as well particularly migraines and tension-type headaches4
In addition to irregular sleep patterns, sleep disorders and headaches are linked. In fact, sleep disorders like sleep apnea, insomnia and circadian rhythm disorder are disproportionately observedin people with headache diagnoses, including migraines and tension-type headaches.5
Although the relationship between headaches and sleep is complex and more studies are needed to fully understand it, it is thought that a part of your brain important for sleep called the hypothalamus could be involvedin some headaches.6 For example, two types of rare headaches are inherently linked to sleep: cluster headaches and hypnic headaches.7 8 9
Severe Headache And Your Quality Of Life
Although a long headache may be tiring and frustrating, its likely not fatal, says Dr. Goadsby. Having an attack thats longer than a day doesnt necessarily mean anything dreadful, he says. But a headache that persists can take a real toll on your quality of life.
For example, migraineurs know that when their headache begins they may lose a day of productive work or family time. According to the Migraine Research Foundation, 90 percent of migraine sufferers cant work or function during a migraine. Arranging for strategies to deal with that one day might be bearable, but being out of commission for two or even three days can be more difficult. Even the worry over an impending migraine, especially for those whose headaches are long or severe, can interfere with daily life.
Here are some possible causes for a headache that never seems to end:
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Tips For Morning Headache Relief
First, drink a big glass of water. After sleeping for 8+ hours your body will be dehydrated and in serious need of some water. Put the coffee, milk and juice on hold until after your shower and start your day with some h20.
Second, take a pain reliever like Advil, Motrin or Ibuprofen to help everything get back to normal. We recommend taking it with our glass or water from step 1!
Third, eat a hearty breakfast. Your stomach is likely growling, instead of grabbing eating fast food or a pop tart try cooking a real breakfast like pancakes or bacon and eggs! Your body burns more calories than your might expect while sleeping. Sure, driving through McDonalds and getting some hash browns may be easy but you are not doing yourself any favors in the long run.
Fourth, hit the gym. Instead of sleep walking through the rest of the day go to the gym and lift some weights or run on the track. Waking your body up and getting out of the post sleep funk is an easy way to jump start the rest of your day.
Can Too Much Sleep Cause Headaches
We love to sleep in on the weekend, but can too much sleep cause headaches? Everyone knows that humans need at least 8 hours of sleep per night
but what if we decide to sleep in for 9, 10, 11 or even 12 hours?
Sure, getting up after lunch feels great but could it be slowing you down for the rest of the day?
Many of us try to catch up on lost sleep by sleeping in on Saturday the weekends! These sleep patterns can actually cause short and long term health problems like insomnia, diabetes and heart disease .
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How To Prevent Sleep
To stop these headaches and make sure you’re getting a healthy amount of sleep, Dr. Pitts recommends first seeing a neurologist, who can help you identify what’s causing you to sleep so much . “Correcting the underlying problem is the clear answer,” Dr. Pitts said whether that’s a sleep disorder, a mood disorder, or something else.
He also recommends practicing good sleep hygiene by establishing a comfortable sleep environment ideally, one that’s used only for sleep, not work or TV watching and working to fix any habits that may be disrupting your sleep, such as drinking caffeine in the afternoons.
One of the most important things you can do, however, is set a sleep schedule and stick to it. “Headache patients really need consistent sleep, so they need a consistent bedtime, a consistent wake time, and changes to that are what tend to get people in trouble,” Dr. Elton said. “I always tell my patients, you don’t have to get up and do anything. You just have to be out of bed.”
If you’re struggling to fix your sleep patterns, Dr. Elton noted that a low dose of melatonin may be helpful in resetting your sleep schedule but that’s something to discuss with your doctor first.
Higher Heart Disease Risk
Using information from the large National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey , researchers linked both short and long sleep with a higher risk of coronary heart disease and stroke. The study found that people sleeping more than eight hours per night were twice as likely to haveanginaVerified SourceMayo ClinicRanked #1 hospital by U.S. News & World Report and one of the most trusted medical institutions in the world. The staff is committed to integrated patient care, education, and research.View sourcechest pain caused by reduced blood flow) and 10% more likely to have coronary heart disease.
Analysis of the data from theNurses’ Health Study,Verified SourceNational Library of Medicine Worlds largest medical library, making biomedical data and information more accessible.View sourcewhich involved over 71,000 middle-aged women, also found connections between sleep length and heart health. Compared to normal eight-hour sleepers, women sleeping nine to 11 hours per night were 38% more likely to have coronary heart disease.
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Get The Benefits Of Sleep Without Oversleeping
If you average more than seven or eight hours of sleep per night, see a doctor for a checkup. The doctor can help you determine why you oversleep.
If your oversleeping is caused by alcohol or certain prescription medications, cutting back on or eliminating the use of these substances may help. Never stop a prescribed medicine, however, unless instructed to do so by your doctor. Similarly, if your oversleeping is caused by an underlying medical condition, treating this disorder may allow you to return to normal sleep habits.
Regardless of the cause of your oversleeping, practicing good sleep hygiene will help you reap the benefits of a healthy seven to eight hours of sleep each night. Experts recommend keeping the same bedtimes and wake times every day. They also recommend avoiding caffeine and alcohol close to bedtime. Exercising regularly and making your bedroom a comfortable environment that’s conducive to sleep will help you get the amount of sleep you need.