If you have Crohn’s and can’t sleep, there's a solution for you!
Crohn’s disease (CD) is a lifelong condition, so it’s vital to find a long-term treatment plan that improves your symptoms while also allowing you to live life to your fullest.
The most common symptoms associated with Crohn’s on the digestive front include diarrhoea, bloody stools, weight loss, and fatigue. There’s no doubt that the symptoms of Crohn’s can be really painful and greatly decrease the person’s quality of life.
This disease, as well as many other chronic inflammatory diseases, can impact other areas of life as well, such as your mental health and your sleep.
Studies have proven that individuals with Crohn’s disease experience a higher incidence of poor sleep than those without Crohn’s. In multiple studies, 76% of those with active CD and 48% of those with inactive Crohn’s disease reported sleep disturbances to at least some degree. (1)(2)
Let’s chat about what Crohn’s disease is, how and why it can affect your sleep, and what natural remedies may help you regain your sleep!
Contents:The Bottom Line
Smoking, genetics, autoimmune diseases, and environmental factors are believed to be contributors to the development of Crohn’s disease, although there is some debate about this topic. (5)
CD can affect any part of the small or large intestine and symptoms may vary from patient to patient, depending on the part of the digestive tract being affected and the extension of the inflammation. (5)
As a result, symptoms can appear on the mouth, anus, and anywhere in the gastrointestinal tract between the two. (6)
Crohn’s disease evolves with periods of activity and remissions. When the disease is active, the main symptoms include (5):
- Loss of appetite
- Mouth sores
- Abdominal or anal pain
- Bloody stools
- Weight loss
- Sleep disturbances
Studies of IBD patients show that fatigue is twice as common in patients with IBD as in healthy controls. It occurs in up to 50% of patients with IBD at diagnosis and is more common in Crohn’s disease (48-62%) than it is in ulcerative colitis (UC) (42-47%). (7)
The fatigue caused by Crohn’s disease isn’t necessarily just limited to when the individual is having a flare-up. It can even occur during times of remission.
Crohn’s disease can cause fatigue on its own, which is among its most life-disrupting extraintestinal manifestations since sleep disorders significantly reduce the quality of life of patients. (8)
There are many possible factors that contribute to fatigue in patients with Crohn’s disease, including medications, disease activity, alterations to the gut-brain axis, anemia, and psychosomatic symptoms. (7)
Researchers have been dedicating more time and attention to this topic in recent years as the link between autoimmune response and sleep deprivation becomes more clear. They’ve also been able to conclusively link sleep deprivation to increased inflammation. (7)
This means that the cycle of getting poor sleep contributes to your increased inflammation, which, in turn, affects your sleep quality leading once again to poor sleep. It’s a vicious cycle that’s important to take note of and ultimately work on breaking in the long run.
Here are some basic things to remember to help promote a relaxing sleeping experience (3):
- Make sure your room is dark to create a calming environment to make it easier for you to fall asleep.
- Try to avoid screens or limit screen time before bed to allow time for the brain to slow down.
- Stay away from caffeine 6 hours before sleep and alcohol 4 hours before sleep.
- Make a habit of waking up and going to sleep at the same time every day.
- Don’t take naps longer than 45’.
- Exercise regularly, but not right before bed.
- Avoid heavy, spicy, or sugary foods 4 hours before bedtime.
- Use your bed for sleep and sex, avoiding its use for work or general recreation.
Science-backed options that have been proven effective in improving sleep quality include cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), basic education surrounding sleep routines and hygiene, drinking calming teas, and taking herbs that promote sleep such as the three we are about to discuss (9):
The scientifically-proven sedative properties of the herb passionflower (also known as Passiflora incarnata) make it a valuable natural treatment option when it comes to improving sleep, according to experimental studies. (10)(11)
These controlled experiments have shown passionflower to be beneficial when it comes to improving sleep quality and even inducing sleep.
Historically, passionflower has often been used as a natural remedy for irritability, relaxation, and deeper sleep.
Researchers have found valerian root to be another promising herb when it comes to reducing the amount of time it takes to fall asleep, as well as improving overall sleep quality.
GABA is an amino acid that plays a key role in managing different vigilance states. (4)
It is involved in the modulation of stress, as well as improving sleep, boosting memory, and dulling pain. Research has shown GABA to be particularly effective in helping with sleep latency (the falling asleep process). (13)(14)
When GABA is taken along with another amino acid, called L-theanine, it creates quite a little cocktail for a good night’s rest. Experimental studies show that the combination of GABA and L-theanine has a positive effect on sleep quality and quantity as compared to each of them on their own. This blend decreased the amount of time it took the patients to fall asleep by 14.9% and increased sleep time by 26.8%. Additionally, it skyrocketed REM sleep by a shocking 99.6%! (15)
Currently available evidence indicates that a few natural ingredients may put into play some of their hypnotic and anxiolytic activity when they interact with GABA receptors. (4)
This relaxing combination of amino acids, as well as valerian root and passionflower, are the main ingredients in The Deep Sleep Mode supplement available for purchase in our shop.
Deep Sleep Mode restores the body’s natural ability to get 8+ hours of uninterrupted sleep, increases deep sleep by 87%, and shuts-down Sleep Static—the #1 cause of sleepless nights in women over 35.
Studies have conclusively shown that those who have Crohn’s disease considered to be in remission and those with active CD are vulnerable to sleep problems.
A positive mindset, a more detailed sleep routine, and adding some supplements to your life could be all it takes to break through and experience a whole new side to living with Crohn’s disease. (1)(2)
The Deep Sleep Mode supplement is worth considering if you have Crohn’s and can’t sleep! It’s the simplest way to savour 8 to 10 hours of unbroken beauty rest every night. It can help you drift into blissful sleep 57% faster, as well as increases deep sleep by 87%.