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5 Reasons Why You're Waking Up Feeling Tired All the Time

Feeling exhausted in the mornings when you first wake up? Here's how to avoid that.

Waking up feeling tired and exhausted

Have you got that problem where you always seem to wake up feeling extremely tired and finding it tough to get out of bed, no matter how many hours of sleep you got that night?

Don't worry, you're certainly not alone.

In fact, according to Statista, 27% of people report waking up tired on 4 or more days out of each week.

Is it because we're not sleeping enough?

Is it because we're using our phones too much?

There are many reasons why you might be waking up feeling like a slug, and in this article we'll uncover all the main and most common causes of this, as well as give you some tips on how you can prevent yourself from waking up and feeling this way all the time!

Let's get into it.

Why Do I Wake Up Feeling Tired All the Time?

Let's take a look at the 5 most common causes of you feeling tired when you wake up.

Sleep Inertia

Now, before you have to worry about anything, there's a good chance that the reason you're feeling tired in the mornings is simply due to sleep inertia.

This is basically your body adjusting to the changes between being asleep and being awake.

It's an extremely normal and common occurrence.

Your brain doesn't usually just wake up immediately with you.

It needs some time to transition from being asleep to its awoken state, causing morning grogginess and disorientation.

As you can probably imagine, it's also going to slow down your cognitive skills and make it tough to get anything big done first thing in the morning.

The effects of sleep inertia can usually last anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour, but it's not extremely uncommon for it to last a little longer than that either.

So if you've noticed that you do feel tired in the mornings when you wake up, but only for a short period of time, it could just be your sleep inertia kicking in.

How Can I Reduce the Effects of Sleep Inertia?

  • Try to get a full night's worth of sleep as often as possible.

  • Try to sleep in 90-minute cycles (keep your sleep duration to either 6 hours, 7.5 hours, or 9 hours).

Too Much Blue Light

Person using cellphone and exposing themselves to blue light

Blue light is extremely common artificial light that you're likely being exposed to all throughout the day.

Modern room lighting, as well as our phone and device screens have increased the exposure we get to this type of light.

Now this type of light isn't all that bad.

In fact, it can increase alertness and make you feel more awake and energized.

However, when we're trying to go to sleep at night, this certainly is not the effect that we're looking for.

Using too much blue light will decrease your ability to get good quality sleep, which can lead to you feeling more tired when you wake up in the mornings.

How Can I Reduce the Impacts of Blue Light on my Sleep?

  • Avoid screen time for at least an hour before bed (we know, that's tough for most people but it's going to make a big difference).

  • Turn on your 'nighttime' filters on your phone and computers after a certain time each night (most devices allow you to set this to turn on automatically).

  • Try to use dimmed red lights at night, as these will have the smallest impact on your sleep as opposed to brighter lights.

Drinking Too Much Caffeine and Alcohol

Caffeine is a stimulant, meaning it naturally increases your alertness and makes you feel more energized.

Having too much caffeine too close to bed time, as you can probably imagine, is going to make it harder for you fall asleep and get some quality rest.

On top of this, some people will naturally take longer to metabolize their caffeine that they consume, meaning that coffee you grab in the afternoon could be dealing more damage than you think to your sleep.

What About Alcohol?

Alcohol, on the other hand is a depressant.

This means it naturally slows you down and makes you feel less energized than before.

However, this doesn't mean it's good for you trying to fall asleep either.

Drinking too much alcohol and negatively impacting sleep

Alcohol can disrupt your deep stages of sleep, hindering your body's ability to get some quality sleep for the next day.

So How Can I Reduce the Impacts of Caffeine and Alcohol?

  • Try to avoid both caffeine and alcohol for at least 4 hours before bed time. Preferably a little longer.

Sleep Disorders

A disorder such as obstructive sleep apnea can cause people to feel tired both in the mornings and throughout the day, even after a full night's sleep.

This disorder causes your airways to close when you're asleep, which causes you to jolt awake in order to breathe.

Now you might not even remember these awakenings, but they will be happening if you've got sleep apnea, and it's going to have big impacts on your energy levels when you wake up and throughout the day.

Some big signs of sleep apnea are heavy snoring and feeling tried throughout the day, but you're going to need to go for sleep tests to get a proper diagnosis if you think you might have this disorder.


It's certainly true that 'early birds' and 'night owls' are usually predetermined by our genetics.

Take a look at this study by David A. Kalmbach.

So if you're the type of person that usually feels tired when you wake up in the morning, but find that you're much better off at night, maybe you're just more of a night owl than you are an early bird.

And the opposite will apply for lots of people as well.

It can be modified to some degree and slightly, but you typically can't change completely from a night owl to a morning person.


And there you have it.

The 5 most common reasons why you might be waking up feeling tired and exhausted.

Hopefully, the tips we've given you are useful and you'll be able to implement them into your own sleep schedules and routines so that you can start to wake up feeling more refreshed, and enjoy feeling more energized and awake throughout the days as well!

I hope you've enjoyed reading through this post, and have found value in it!

If you did, remember to share it with your friends so that we can reach more people and keep spreading knowledge when it comes to health and fitness!

Do YOU wake up feeling tired?


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