I have always been a good sleeper, having no trouble falling asleep at night. I couldn’t even believe that some people had difficulty sleeping. This was so until I became a university student. I started to enjoy drinking coffee, unlike the past when I usually ordered iced tea or orange juice at a café. I didn’t think that coffee hindered me from getting enough sleep, and I actually managed to sleep just fine, no matter how much coffee I had that day. Few semesters went by, and I eventually ended up drinking more than just one cup of coffee every single day. Then something started to change when I became a junior.
It was another day as usual, and I went to bed around midnight, also as usual. I would have fallen asleep within half an hour if everything had been ‘as usual.’ Unfortunately, it was not. I constantly tried and tried to sleep, with my eyes closed, but it was all in vain. After some time, I finally stopped struggling, switched the light on and checked my smart phone to see what time it was. It was two o’ clock in the morning! I couldn’t believe that I had struggled for almost two hours. I eventually managed to get some sleep after another hour, but t h i s strange phenomenon was not temporary.
After a week or so, I had to admit that I was suffering from insomnia. It wasn’t really convincing since my daily routine hadn’t changed a bit. I had to find out what was causing me to suffer at night. Surprisingly, the answer was near at hand; it was coffee. I wasn’t sure if coffee did any harm to me, but tried not drinking coffee for a day just to be sure. That night, to my astonishment, I was asleep before I even knew it. The next day, I refrained from drinking coffee again for I couldn’t believe coffee was causing insomnia. But the results were the same. After those two nights, I quit drinking coffee.
I saw an article that Koreans drink more than twelve cups of coffee every week, which means they drink more than a single cup every day. I can’t deny that they provide pleasure. But if you started to have difficulty sleeping at night, maybe you should try not drinking coffee, too. That fabulous drink may be providing you not only with pleasure, but with insomnia.
Lee Ji-yeon (Kangwon National University)