Trouble Sleeping? It Might Be Racism

Woman lying down
Via Pexels
Leslie Taylor-Grover
June 11, 2020

It starts with a yawn or waking up during the night a few times. Maybe it comes during the day, and you find yourself fighting to stay awake or struggling to pay attention. But it’s not always harmless fatigue or an afternoon crash.

For our people, these bouts of sleepiness or feeling “run down” may indicate something much more dangerous for us. There are three words we need to understand.

Slow wave sleep is the most restorative part of sleep. However, as Black people, the toxicity of discrimination and stress disrupts this process. So what does this mean?

It means the stress from police brutality, institutional racism, economic disparity, and other forms of discrimination puts us more at risk for high blood pressure, obesity, heart attacks, and poor health because this stress interrupts our ability to restore ourselves from sleeping! 

What’s worse is this contributes to us dying earlier than any other group. But there’s hope.

In the short run, doctors suggest creating sleep schedules, taking melatonin, seeking medical advice, or meditating to help ourselves relax before bed. 

In the long run, we must treat racism as the public health issue it is. We may improve our sleeping habits, but we cannot rest until we are truly liberated.

We have a quick favor to ask:

PushBlack is a nonprofit dedicated to raising up Black voices. We are a small team but we have an outsized impact:

  • We reach tens of millions of people with our BLACK NEWS & HISTORY STORIES every year.
  • We fight for CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM to protect our community.
  • We run VOTING CAMPAIGNS that reach over 10 million African-Americans across the country.

And as a nonprofit, we rely on small donations from subscribers like you.

With as little as $5 a month, you can help PushBlack raise up Black voices. It only takes a minute, so will you please ?

Share This Article: