It may sound like an obvious thing, but there is now research that proves we do lose sleep over upsetting news.
The United Kingdom last month voted in a referendum to exit the European Union. While obviously more than half of the people who voted were in favor of the so-called “Brexit,” the opinions were passionate on both sides. After the vote, the British Prime Minister resigned, stocks slumped, and the British Pound dropped. Also, a lot of Britons lost sleep.
The activity tracker Jawbone UP monitors a number of things, including sleep duration. It found that on the night after the Brexit vote, Londoners slept an average of 35 minutes less than usual. Dubliners, meanwhile, slept 15 minutes less than usual.
If you find yourself disturbed by news events, there are steps you can take. First, if sleep does not come easily, don’t lay in bed for hours at a time. Get up, turn on a dim light, and read something light and calming. Do not use electronic devices or turn on the TV, as they can signal to your brain that it’s time to wake up.