Alcohol and Sleep
Apr 02, 2021

Alcohol and Sleep

Everyone needs to unwind. For some people, that’s a game of pickup and for others, it’s a couple of drinks with friends.

But have you ever had trouble sleeping after drinks?

If so, you’re not alone. Let’s get into why this happens and what you can do about it.

Can Alcohol Keep You Up All Night?

It comes as no surprise that alcohol affects different people in different ways. Some people are happy and bubbly when they drink, while others get quiet and keep to themselves. So we can’t say for sure that alcohol will affect you in one way or another. But we can still talk about some of the more common effects alcohol has on people.

Most people find that they can fall asleep pretty easily after drinking. You probably even know someone who gets a little sleepy after a glass or two of wine. But a lot of people also find that, after drinking, they wake up late at night or early in the morning depending on how you look at it.

So it’s quite possible that you’ll start snoozing the minute you hit the bed, but you might also find yourself wide awake at 3 in the morning.

How Does Alcohol Affect Sleep?

Alcohol is a downer, meaning it has sedative properties. Sure, people who drink and party don’t look very sedated. But watch anyone drink outside of a social gathering and you’ll see how it actually just chills them out.

Because of this sedative property, alcohol normally helps most people fall asleep.

The problem is, as your liver starts to metabolize the alcohol, it starts releasing enzymes and chemical compounds that wake you up. That’s because these enzymes prevent your body from producing the other chemicals it needs to stay asleep.

Alcohol also disrupts rapid eye movement, which will shorten your REM sleep AKA dream sleep. REM is also the sleep that makes you feel well-rested. 

These two things combined leave you there, lying awake at night as your body tries to get rid of the alcohol you drank only a few hours ago.

And now you’re stuck watching Netflix until the sun comes up or you fall asleep again.

How Much Alcohol Does It Take To Disrupt Sleep?

So how much alcohol can you drink before you start having sleeping problems? A glass of wine? A few beers? A cosmo?

Well, we hate to say it, but it really depends on you and your body.

Some people can drink a lot more than others before they start having sleep problems while others will start having disrupted sleep after so much as one glass of wine. You’re not going to know what your body can or can’t handle unless you track what you drank and how well you slept that night.

How Do You Sleep Better After A Night Of Drinking?

Let’s say you plan on going to a party and having some drinks with friends, but you don’t want to stay up too late. What do you do?

Try these suggestions and see if you start sleeping better.

  • Give yourself one hour between bed and drinking for each serving of alcohol
  • Make sure you eat something to help settle your stomach
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Give yourself time to unwind afterward
  • Don’t fill up your schedule the day after so you can take things slow

Follow these tips and you’ll more likely sleep uninterrupted throughout the night.

Sleep Well With Simmons

Alcohol or no alcohol in your system, you deserve a good night's sleep. Whether you’re going out for drinks or staying in, you need a comfortable bed to end your evening in. Simmons’ firm, medium, and plush mattresses help all sorts of people with different sleeping preferences get the Zzzzs they need.

So if you’re having a hard time sleeping, remember, it might be your mattress.