Exploring the Connection Between COVID-19 and Insomnia

2 min read
Exploring the Connection Between COVID-19 and Insomnia
2023 Oct 3Mind

The COVID-19 pandemic has not only been a global health crisis but also a catalyst for a surge in sleep-related issues, particularly insomnia. Dubbed 'COVID insomnia,' this phenomenon has affected a vast number of individuals, disrupting normal sleep patterns and contributing to heightened levels of stress and anxiety. This article delves into the complex relationship between COVID-19 and insomnia, exploring the reasons behind this connection and offering insights into managing sleep difficulties during these unprecedented times.

Understanding COVID Insomnia

COVID insomnia refers to sleep disturbances linked directly or indirectly to the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or experiencing non-restorative sleep. The pandemic has created a unique set of stressors and lifestyle changes that have significantly impacted sleep quality for many.

Causes of COVID and Insomnia

  • Stress and Anxiety: The uncertainties and fears surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, including health concerns, economic instability, and social isolation, have led to increased stress and anxiety levels, which are common culprits of insomnia.
  • Disrupted Routines: Lockdowns and work-from-home arrangements have disrupted daily routines, affecting regular sleep-wake cycles.
  • Increased Screen Time: With more people turning to digital devices for work, entertainment, and social connection, there has been an increase in screen time, which can interfere with sleep due to blue light exposure.
  • Lack of Physical Activity: Restrictions on movement and closure of fitness centers have resulted in reduced physical activity, which is crucial for good sleep.

Impact of Struggling to Sleep During the Pandemic

The consequences of poor sleep are far-reaching, impacting not just physical health but also mental well-being. Chronic insomnia can lead to a higher risk of depression, anxiety, and impaired immune function – concerns that are particularly poignant in the context of a global health crisis.

Managing COVID Insomnia

  • Establish a Regular Sleep Schedule: Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day to regulate your body's internal clock.
  • Create a Relaxing Bedtime Routine: Engage in calming activities before bed, such as reading, taking a warm bath, or practicing relaxation techniques.
  • Limit Screen Time Before Bed: Reduce exposure to screens and blue light in the evening to help your mind wind down.
  • Stay Physically Active: Regular physical activity, even a daily walk, can significantly improve sleep quality.
  • Mindfulness and Stress Reduction: Techniques like meditation, deep breathing, or yoga can help alleviate stress and anxiety, making it easier to fall asleep.
  • Seek Professional Help: If insomnia persists, consider seeking help from a healthcare professional. They can provide guidance on appropriate treatment options, which may include cognitive-behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I).


The connection between COVID-19 and insomnia is a testament to the far-reaching impacts of the pandemic on our daily lives. Recognizing the factors contributing to COVID insomnia is the first step in addressing this issue. By adopting healthy sleep habits, managing stress, and seeking support when needed, it's possible to mitigate the effects of the pandemic on sleep and move towards restful nights once again.

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