Lesser-known drink that can ruin your sleep and make you feel tired the next day

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Skip the nightcap for a good night's sleep -Credit:Oleg Breslavtsev

When it comes to securing a restful night's kip, there's no shortage of tips and tricks we're advised to follow for that all-important beauty sleep.

There's more than just caffeine and screen time that could be keeping us from drifting off While many of us are aware of the usual suspects, there's a less obvious tipple that might be sabotaging your slumber without you realising it.

Despite the sedative effects of a cold beer or a soothing glass of wine, it appears that alcohol might actually be the villain disrupting your zzz's.

As reports the Mirror, Bed Kingdom's sleep experts have pinpointed booze and nicotine as potential insomnia culprits. They've clarified: "While alcohol can often make you fall asleep faster, drinking it close to bedtime can cause fragmented sleep and can be the cause of frequent waking throughout the night."

They further detailed: "Studies have found that drinking alcohol within four hours of bedtime can negatively affect sleep continuity and duration, leading to longer 'wake after sleep onset' (WASO), where you wake up during the night and struggle to get back to sleep."

Woman lying alone in bed, looking away in thought
The experts suggest leaving four hours between your last drink and bedtime -Credit:Getty Images/Canopy

"If you are having trouble staying asleep after an evening drink, try to have your last drink around four hours before you go to bed to ensure that your body has had ample time to digest and metabolise the alcohol before you try to fall asleep."

Not just booze, nicotine use before bed can also hamper our sleep as it interferes with the body's capacity to fall and maintain sleep. According to experts: "Caffeine works by blocking the effects of adenosine, a neurotransmitter that naturally builds up in the body during the day and creates pressure to sleep."

It's well-known that caffeine intake prior to bed can hamper your sleep but what you may not be aware of is for how long it remains in your system.

A study that surfaced in the National Library of Medicine revealed caffeine to have a half-life of five hours in healthy people, which implies it takes almost five hours for half the caffeine to exit one's body.

The experts suggested: "While it may sound extreme, if you are having trouble drifting off in the evening, consider cutting off caffeine eight to 12 hours before your bedtime."

"If you typically go to bed at 11pm, this could mean having your last caffeinated drink at around 1pm in the afternoon and opting for decaffeinated options for the remainder of the day."

"If insomnia impacts your daily life and has been a problem for longer than a month, and isn't related to a factor such as alcohol and nicotine consumption, the experts recommend you make an appointment to see your GP."

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