By Cosmopolitan.com | Healthy Living – Fri, Nov 16, 2012 6:38 AM PHT * Email
Here are the real reasons you can't sleep.It may not actually be that late-night cappuccino that's keeping you up. Read on for 10 surprising things that cause insomnia…that you have to ditch now.
By Esther Crain
1. Total Silence
When it's too quiet, you're more easily awakened by a random sound, like your guy getting up to go to the bathroom or a car outside. Get a whitenoise machine or turn on a fan, both of which drown out light noise, says sleep expert Michael Breus, PhD, author of The Sleep Doctor's Diet Plan.
2. The Wrong Blinds or Curtains
If your window coverings are too short or sheer, slivers of light may sneak their way into your bedroom and thwart the production of melatonin, a hormone crucial to nodding off, says William C. Kohler, MD, medical director of the Florida Sleep Institute, in Spring Hill, Florida. Replace them with blinds, curtains, or shades that truly fit, preferably the kind labeled "blackout," which use heavier fabric or material (one to look for: nonwoven polyester).
3. Your Furry Bedtime Buddy
Even if you don't normally have pet allergies, the dander shed from animal skin and hair collects on your bedding and can irritate your nasal passageways, making you sniffle or sneeze and forcing your body awake. It doesn't help either that pets tend to move around a lot at night, says Dr. Kohler. We know you love the cuddle monster, but get him a cushy bed of his own in another room.
Related: Ways to Boost Your Mood
4. Your Alarm Clock
It's tempting to check what time it is when you're trying to score some shuteye. And once you do the math and realize how few hours you have until morning, it causes anxiety, making it even harder to relax and doze off. Simple fix: Turn your clock away from you so you can't see what time it is. Even more important: Stay away...