Feeling sleepy during the day

Why Do I Wake Up Feeling Exhausted?

Max. D Gray
By Max. D Gray. Updated: March 23, 2022
Why Do I Wake Up Feeling Exhausted?

Although it may seem contradictory, sometimes we find ourselves tired when we get out of bed after sleeping the hours we need. If this happens, we spend all day exhausted, cranky and sluggish, and as a result we are not capable of doing our jobs or personal obligations. Not everyone is a morning person, and it's usual to feel a bit slow and lazy when you wake up. However, this feeling shouldn't convert into complete fatigue. There are some reasons why this might be happening to you, so don't stop reading this OneHowTo article if you want to know why you wake up feeling exhausted.

You may also be interested in: What Are The Best Drinks Before Sleep

Steps to follow:


First, it is important to note that all restful sleep requires a minimum amount of hours which may vary from person to person. The most common is 8 hours of sleep to be able to get up with energy, but it is also true that some people can easily get by with sleeping fewer hours and others need more sleep.

Why Do I Wake Up Feeling Exhausted? - Step 1

If you still wake up tired after enough hours of sleep, you need to find the causes of this problem in order to treat it.

One of the possible causes of waking up as if you have not slept is sleep apnoea. This is a condition where you stop breathing while sleeping for a few seconds, so the body is forced to look for oxygen by breathing deeply.

Sometimes snoring and sleep apnoea are confused, but they are two different issues. Paralyzed breathing during sleep can mean not resting well and you wake up more tired than you were before going to sleep.


Sleep disorders can also play a part in being tired upon waking up. If you suffer from somnambulism, you talk when asleep, have recurring nightmares, etc. you probably will not rest as you should. The sleep cycle has several phases, and such conditions may make it difficult to carry out all of these stages and rest properly.

Why Do I Wake Up Feeling Exhausted? - Step 3

Gastrointestinal and digestive problems like GERD, also known as gastroesophageal reflux, can also be one of the reasons for your tiredness upon waking. Poor digestion can mean that your body needs to make an extra effort to process nutrients and that you will not rest as you should. That is why we recommend a light dinner and not going to sleep just after finishing eating.

Why Do I Wake Up Feeling Exhausted? - Step 4

It is also possible that you're tired when waking up due to hypothyroidism which occurs when the thyroid gland does not secrete enough thyroid hormone and, as a result, metabolic processes slow down. It is important to know what the causes of hypothyroidism are, its symptoms and how to treat it. If you think you suffer from hypothyroidism, see a doctor to start the treatment.


Depression can also lead to not resting correctly and making you feel tired and restless when you wake up. If you have a medical specialist's diagnoses of depression, it is important that you explain your problem regarding sleep and difficulty to rest at night. Maybe this problem will have something to do with the medication you're taking, and in this case, the doctor will change it for something else.

Stress and being worried or nervous about something can also disrupt your sleeping cycle.

Why Do I Wake Up Feeling Exhausted? - Step 6

It can also be that there are several issues that interrupt your sleep such as having to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, this happens especially during old age as the capacity to store urine is lower. You can try not drinking fluids right before going to bed or not having fruit, soup or tea. Men in old age may also want to take a prostate exam as this might be the problem.


There are some habits you can include in your bedtime routine to fall asleep more easily and have better quality of sleep overall:

  • Don't check your phone one hour before going to bed. Looking at devices' screens in the dark before going to bed is bad for your eyes. The artificial light that emits from your phone, TV, tablet or laptop tricks your brain into believing it's daytime and therefore, it needs to be awake. It's much better to read a book or a magazine before going to bed.
  • Keep your room dark and quiet. Also, put your phone in silence or at least turn the wi-fi or the internet data off, so even if someone sends you a text message you won't have the need to check your phone.
Why Do I Wake Up Feeling Exhausted? - Step 8

You should avoid caffeine before going to bed. Caffeine is a stimulant and will make your body alert during the night, thus reducing the quality of sleep and making you feel tired when you wake up.


If you continue experiencing tiredness upon waking up, visit your doctor for a diagnosis.

This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to Why Do I Wake Up Feeling Exhausted?, we recommend you visit our Mental health category.

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Why Do I Wake Up Feeling Exhausted?