The idea that exhaustion can prevent shut-eye might be counter-intuitive, but your fatigued brain isn’t playing tricks on you.
“Overtiredness” occurs when your mind and body are out of sync: you’re mentally burned out but not physically ready to hit the hay. This is the difference between fatigue, which is corporeal, and sleepiness, which is the inability to stay awake.
“The frenetic pace of modern life means we’re often in danger of depleting our mental energy without taxing our bodies,” says Dr Nerina Ramlakhan, the author of Fast Asleep, Wide Awake. “The result is that we end up tired but wired.”
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