Imagine trying to walk across a tightrope. Above you the warm embrace of sleep feels just out of reach, and below you a perpetual wakefulness awaits. This balancing act is one which so many insomnia sufferers know all too well. One of “half-sleep” or “non-restorative sleep”, a state where you’re not fully awake but not truly asleep either. At night, you lie down and find yourself stuck in this state, waking up each morning feeling as if you’ve spent the night struggling through a foggy swamp.

This problem leaves you feeling tired and frustrated. It feels in one way like you’ve had no sleep at all, but you know you have had small bursts here and there, no matter how unrestful.

So why does this happen?

It happens when your brain can’t fully switch off from being awake, causing broken sleep that prevents you from reaching the deep and REM sleep stages that are essential for feeling refreshed.

Why does this happen? There are many reasons. Stress and anxiety are major factors. When you’re stressed, your body stays on high alert, cortisol courses through your blood and your brain can’t easily move into sleep. This state of high alertness can also cause you to wake up often during the night, making your sleep light and broken. Certain medical conditions, like chronic pain or hormonal imbalances, can also exacerbate this cycle with nightly interruptions.

What can I do about it?

Dealing with half-sleep is very challenging. It creates a vicious cycle: the poorer and less restorative your sleep, the more you worry about sleeping, and the harder it becomes to sleep. This ongoing cycle can severely affect your life, impacting your mood, thinking, and even your physical health.

But there is hope. Addressing half-sleep needs a thorough approach, and this is where sleep retraining programs like re:sleep come in. These programs, based on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I), help you restore a healthy sleep pattern by addressing the root causes of your sleep problems. They help retrain your brain to link the bed with sleep rather than wakefulness, breaking the cycle of worry and alertness that keeps you in half-sleep.

Overcoming half-sleep requires consistent effort and a willingness to change long-standing habits. But with the right support and strategies, it is entirely possible to escape the limbo of half-sleep and wake up feeling truly rested and ready to face the day. The journey to restful sleep is challenging, but the reward of a reinvigorated life makes every step worthwhile!

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