Alcohol before bed prevents you from sleeping well, a new study has found.

Up to 15 percent of people use alcohol to fall asleep, but research shows that it loses its ability to induce sleep after just a few days. The body builds a tolerance to alcohol's sleep-inducing effects very fast. This study contradicts the popular notion that a nightcap is good for relaxed sleep.

The study, led by J. Todd Arnedt, PhD, clinical assistant professor at the Sleep and Chronophysiology Laboratory at the University of Michigan, suggests that though a large enough dose of alcohol will make you fall asleep very fast, this type of sleep does not allow the body to go through its natural sleep cycle and misses on the early dream sleep that would naturally occur without the influence of alcohol. Later, when the body has metabolised the alcohol, sleep is frequently broken - often because the person wants to take a leak.

In another study on drinking alcohol before bed, Christian Nicholas and his colleagues at the University of Melbourne were interested in finding how the brain reacts to the alcohol during sleep. The researchers asked 24 adults aged 18 to 21 to spend several nights at the Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences Sleep Laboratory. The subjects were sometimes given orange juice with vodka and sometimes orange juice with a straw dipped in vodka. They then went to bed at the normal time with their heads connected to electrodes to measure their sleeping brainwave patterns on an electroencephalogram (EEG).


Read the full article "A Drink before Bed Ruins Your Sleep" at International Business Times.