By Andy | January 7, 2013 - 12:16 pm - Posted in Insomnia, Sleep Habits

 

Does the full moon affect our sleep? How about full moon sleep in the cycles of the moon? Many disorders seem to follow the phases of the moon. When the moon is full, some people may suffer from insomnia, nightmares, strange dreams, and some people even sleepwalk. There is one more interesting fact that some people sleep better when the moon is full, even if its shine falls into their faces.

… But: Austrian scientists have shown that sleep patterns are not affected by the phases offullmoon the moon.

  • Numerous studies about full moon sleep have tried to find lunar effects. Reuters reports that researchers with the Austrian Society for Sleep Medicine & Sleep Research examined the sleep patterns of 391 people in several European countries. About half the subjects had sleeping disorders, but no one knew the researchers were interested in the effect of the moon and full moon sleep. “When I deal with patients with sleep problems, so many say that the full moon stopped them (from) sleeping, that even I was expecting some small difference to show up in the study,” Gerhardt Kloesch, the Vienna University psychologist who led the current research, told Reuters.
  • In fact, just 8 percent of those surveyed had problems sleeping while there was a full moon, compared to 25 percent who said they had a particularly good night’s sleep on the night of a full moon.
  • full moon sleep or not, it’s important to get the right amount of sleep each night. If you sleep too little-orfullmoon effects even too much–you’re at a higher risk for a heart attack. In a separate research study, doctors at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston have determined that women who have a sleep imbalance–that is, sleep five or less hours a night or nine or more–run a greater risk of getting heart disease than those who sleep eight hours a night. Why? They aren’t sure, especially for those who sleep too much. Reuters reports that while the study involved 121,700 female nurses that began in 1976, the results are likely to apply to men as well.


full moon sleep or not, it’s important to get the right amount of sleep each night. If you sleep too little-or


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38 Comments

  1. February 10, 2009 @ 4:35 pm


    im 18 years old and im having gr8 difficulty sleeping most of the time, but last night i sleapt very well, im guessing that the full moon made me sleep, but i cant go to sleep now. the moon must effect MY sleeping.

    Posted by davz
  2. March 11, 2009 @ 7:39 am


    for three months i cant sleep if thier is afull moon.. it’s driving me crazy… does it really affect my sleep?

    Posted by romano
  3. January 17, 2010 @ 4:11 am


    past few years or all my life really…
    i cant sleep when there is a full moon, why? how? i dont kno… but when i wake up i check if there is a full moon,,,, and there is.

    there should be research on ppl that sleep fine but cant sleep on full moons.

    Posted by Damir
  4. March 30, 2010 @ 5:46 am


    I’m a girl and I have trubble sleeping on full moons. some of my friends think i’m part werewolf, but i don’t know why.

    Posted by Max
  5. March 30, 2010 @ 9:33 pm


    I work in the maritime industry, which leads to random patterns of the full moon, based on where in the world I am. Also it means that i don’t generally have access to see if there is going to be a full moon wherever I am.
    For years I’ve had issues sleeping the night before, during and the night after the full moon. So obviously I am one of the 8% that have issues. I’ve even tried a bad combination of sleep aid, pain killer and muscle relaxer to try and get over it but it still had problems.

    All other times I sleep great 8 hours a night.

    I’ve read that it is the light, but on a ship it is very easy to make it so dark you cannot see to even get to the bathroom.
    I also read that the influence of the moon on a person is like a mosquito landing on your arm. But ironically I feel that pretty clearly when it happens.

    I’ve considered trying to get some official help, but not quite sure how to do it. Do I go on a normal night, then on a full moon? Or do I just go on a full moon?

    Posted by Mark
  6. April 27, 2010 @ 6:55 pm


    I have always had sleep issues, but have noticed a few times where I have had a really sleepless night and when I woke up the next morning I have been told that there was a full moon the night before, so I agree, something about the full moon affects my sleep. Now if someone could figure out what to do about it.!

    Posted by Rhonda
  7. April 28, 2010 @ 3:20 am


    i have the same problem as “Damir” i honestly can say that i am usually a great sleeper when i eventually get to bed i pretty much fall to sleep not long after my head touches the pillow so when a little while ago ,for the life of me i just couldnt sleep i told my sister in the morning and then that day on the radio she had heard that it had been a full moon the night before and told me some people can be affected by this.
    i am now convinced i cant sleep during a full moon as again i could not sleep at all last night and i can honestly say i didnt even know it was a full moon until a little further on in the night when i had eventually got up and just looked outside.
    it has me dumbfounded,its bizarre how on edge i felt last night ive never felt like that before..

    Posted by josephine
  8. July 25, 2010 @ 8:17 pm


    I’m 19 and every full moon I get little to no sleep.This is one of those nights.I’ve been like this for the past 5 years,or atleast 5 years that I’ve noticed.During a full moon I’ve experienced;insomnia,restlessness and on occasion hyperactivity.Sleepy-pills on’t do a damn thing.If the moon isn’t the cause of this clock work activity then what is?
    If these Austrian scientists can give me a cure then I’ll be all for them and their idea that the moon has no effect on us,but untill then my feet are firmly planted in MOON=BAD

    Posted by Richard
  9. September 8, 2010 @ 6:40 pm


    i sleep fine on a full moon it when there is no moon or only a bit i have probs :-(

    Posted by danny w
  10. September 22, 2010 @ 8:57 am


    I don’t know what it is but I usually get very little quality sleep for a few days surrounding the full moon. And I am plagued by bad dreams during this time as well. I am one of those people who cannot stand to be indoors if the sun is out. I wonder if there is a subconscious pull to be awake when it is light outside even if it is night.

    Posted by Christian
  11. September 23, 2010 @ 5:38 am


    I slept horribly last night and sure enough, when I checked the moon phase calendar this morning I found it was a full moon. Even when I’m unaware of the moon phase I do find that I am very much affected by a full moon. Cloudy, like last night, or not.

    Posted by Nick
  12. December 21, 2010 @ 2:13 pm


    I always sleep very restlessly during a full moon. I have trouble falling asleep, no matter how exhausted I am, and then once asleep I sleep fitfully all night. It’s usually only the next day that I discover there was a full moon.

    It drives me crazy, and I am not the only one I know who has this problem. Last night I was so tired I couldn’t keep my eyes open, yet would NOT fall asleep, then this morning I read the news and saw it was a full moon again. That is why, out of desperation, I googled the topic, and ended up here. Well, I can tell you, your science is incorrect, the moon definitely effects my sleep, and I wish it didn’t.

    Posted by Krystal
  13. December 27, 2010 @ 3:49 am


    I’m in the UK and have suffered lunar cycle related sleep disorders for 20 years or more. By tracking dates in my diary, the insomnia is totally relative to full moon activity. In fact, I can judge when a full moon is imminent as I also get booming headaches come on which I can only put down to the changes in magnetic forces during a lunar phase. Usually 5-7 days per cycle are affected where I can hardly sleep at all. I’m sorry to report to other interested people and sufferers that I have tried almost every possible option to find some kind of cure; diets, pre-sleep mental activities, excercise regimes, sleep prep routines, therapies, alternative therapies, a wide range of narcotics and nothing makes the sligtest difference. It’s had a big effect on my general health, my ability to work and think and my happiness. I’m now considering a move to another part of the world where magnetic forces from the lunar cycle are not so strong.

    Posted by Mark SG
  14. January 19, 2011 @ 4:19 pm


    In December and this January I had nights of practically no sleep a day or two before the full moon. I had not related sleep to the moon until a colleague pointed out the ‘pretty moon’ outside at the end of a long day at work. It makes more sense now I have read other people’s comments. I go to bed as usual. I am extremely tired but just cannot get off to sleep. At most, I managed a couple of hours after 4am. I also suffered with very hot hands and feet, despite a cold room. This is a new thing for me and I’m really hoping it’s not something that happens every month from here-on-in.

    Posted by Sarah P
  15. January 20, 2011 @ 10:21 pm


    Full moon night before last and was up until 5Am. I worked an 12 hour shift at work then went home to work for the next 7 hours. Went to bed at 5 am. Was up late again last night. Now I am exhausted from working and poor sleep routine yet I am wide awake and the moon is full or as close as it getsNto being full. I can literally feel it in my head. I know when the moon is full without any knowledge of lunar cycles or peeking. 31 years old and have been this way my entire life. My mother is the same way too. Never been a major problem. Just kind of fascinating. I’d love to know more…

    Posted by Son
  16. January 21, 2011 @ 3:40 am


    Argh. I’ve never been able to sleep during a full moon, and I always get a nice big pimple too (I’m over 40ish.) I was exhausted last night from no sleep the night before. Yesterday was a very busy day and evening and I thought I would just drop off to sleep, but NO. Woke up all night long. Adding insult to injury, my dreams were very disturbing. I’lll analyze them later. When I was younger I ovulated during the full moon. So I figure if the full moon can pull the tide, it’s got to mess with the body system, since we’re mostly water. Hence “moon child.” During the summer I am outside from sun up to sun down, winter I am miserably inside. It’s not easy being me!

    Posted by star
  17. February 17, 2011 @ 5:39 am


    I awoke at 3:00 A.M., wide awake, felt wide awake and started my day. Not a feeling of sleepiness or tiredness at all and was wondering why. Yes it is either going to be a full moon or pretty soon. I feel validated as to why I am awake and am going to stay awake for the next 16 to 20 hours and have not a second thought about it. I enjoy having a time to feel free for not having to get eight hours of sleep.

    Posted by Gwen Watson
  18. February 18, 2011 @ 7:21 am


    I can relate perfectly well to all of you. It runs in my family, great sleep up until the full moon, two days before, during, and two days after are miserable. I go to bed at a normal time, will fall asleep relatively easily and will be wide awake at say 1 or so in the morning. Sleep for 45 minutes, wake up…..repeat. I pay no attention to the phase of the moon but when I wake up in the middle of the night, low and behold the moon is full. I know there are studies that disprove this phenomena happening, but I know with 100% certainty the moon messes with me, my family, and all of you. I have a theory that I want you to let me know how valid it could be:

    We all came from monkeys who evolved into cavemen who evolved into us today (Lamen’s terms of evolution). During our hunter/gatherer times (cavemen/woman era) I believe the people used the full moon to their advantage. Whether it be for the gatherer’s to collect nuts and berries during the safety of night, using the full moon to illuminate the surroundings; or whether it be the hunter’s who could easily kill sleeping prey, using only the moonlight to illuminate their way. The night is an excellent time, during those pre-historic eras, to take care of business that was either unsafe to do during the day, or easier to do when beings are asleep.

    As it goes with evolution, certain traits are still prevalent today while others are dying out. I believe the folks who say the full moon does not affect their sleep have evolved past this instinctual habit and some people/family genealogies still have it running in their blood. I know it happens to me whether or not I am mentally aware it’s a full moon, 28 days later my body knows through Pavlovian training that a full moon is out, I need to stay awake and go get stuff done, despite my best attempts to sleep.

    I believe that all the traits we have today are descended from our ancient family tree. Some people have bred this ability out of their genes while other family genes still hold on strong. I would put my money on the fact that in another 500 years, this “sixth sense” will be completely erased. But hey, it’s only my belief.

    Posted by Full Mooner
  19. February 22, 2011 @ 11:59 am


    This is for Mark.
    Mark, when the remark about (LIGHT) was made to you, it is not that you needed to get rid of lite,rather than the brain secrets melatonin that makes you sleepy. As per your living situation, if the body does not have SUNLIGHT in the right amounts that produces melatonin, the result is sleeping disorders like insomnia, hypersomnia and other interrupted sleeping.
    As you might guess insomnia is the lack of sleep,after you go through the cycle of no sleep, your body trys to compensate, then needs more than usual sleep or hypersomnia.

    I just finished a sleep study for college on sleeping disorders and if you take vitamin B-2-B-6 and B-12, B vitamins and the Amino Acid L-tryptphan also found in turkey,celery, this too helps with the production of melatonin when you are unable to get the right amount of sunlight exempt from being on a ship or sub.

    Which ever the case, people can suffer from what is called,SAD, Seasonal Affective Disorder. Those affected by this who live in Alaska need a full spectrum light source and need to sit in front of this for an hour to several hours per day. This method for many works to lesson the affects of SAD and insomnia. You may contact me if I can give you any futher advise on this subject. Good luck and sweeter dreams……

    Posted by mia
  20. March 18, 2011 @ 8:56 pm


    also,maybe coincidental,both my babies were born on a full moon and my appendix burst on a full moon, I’m definately ruled by the moon whether I want to be or not!!! YAWN!!!! I’m so tired,but the dreams ain’t gonna get me!!

    Posted by anne churchill
  21. March 20, 2011 @ 2:40 pm


    I really do not care what the so-called experts in Austria have to say about this. I don’t have any ascertainable facts to back up what I’m saying, nor do I suggest that this applies to everyone, but I know my own body and for the past several years now, when there is a full moon, I have great difficulty falling asleep. Every Month.

  22. May 16, 2011 @ 1:33 pm


    I have been having insomnia for years on and around full moon. My sister as well. For me it is a few days before during and a few days after. No matter how tired i am I cannot sleep at night. I noticed it is especially bad around a super spring tide we had a few months ago.
    There is my theory, the moon has such an effect on the ocean (tides) is it any wonder if it can do that, what is it doing to my body.
    My solution is to do my morning chores, have breakfast then go lay down afterwards. I go into total unconsiousness for at least an hour sometimes up to two.

    Posted by tony morris
  23. May 17, 2011 @ 10:33 pm


    Wow came looking too see if I was the only one and sure as hell I’m not I have also kept a journal since I was a small child at the request of my grandmother and as it is tonight I cannot sleep at all during a full moon and have tried everything in every medical book as well as therapy and even illegal drugs from time too time truth is I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I cannot sleep during a full moon as I sit here now it been 3 days with no sleep and as usual no relief to be found

    Posted by kyle
  24. June 13, 2011 @ 1:13 am


    I have had insomnia for 25 years and like most of the posts, I too have an even harder time sleeping the day before, day of and day after the full moon. I didn’t make the connection for many years and I know it’s not because of always knowing when it’s a full moon. I may just have a really restless night and then notice the next day on the calander that it had been a full moon the night before. My mother-in-law used to work at a state mental facility and she would also tell us about how patients would roam the halls at night during a full moon, unable to sleep and also how patients who were not normally violent would be abnormally aggressive. The moon obviously has some effect on our brains and I for one would like to see more research done on the subject.

    Posted by tina marie
  25. June 15, 2011 @ 9:36 pm


    i am going into the 8th grade and i have problems sleeping the day before the day of and the day after a full moon. me being in high school and having to listen to teachers all day im pretty tired at the end of the day but no matter what i do if its one of those three days i just can not sleep. i told my best friend about this and she doesnt have this problem so she thinks im basically crazy! but im guessin that since no one knows then its just something that ill have to live with. i hate it but thats the way im made. i had to go to a veiwing and a funeral today and last night i tried and tried to get as much sleep as possible but culd nt get any i ended up falling asleep at 2 in the morning and i had to wake up five hours later and for a thirteen year old that aint enough so i was really grumpy. im not sure if there was a full moon but im pretty sure there was…

    Posted by Tapanga
  26. July 14, 2011 @ 9:23 pm


    For years I have suffered from insomnia a few days every month, without knowing the reason. It was not until a few years ago, when I mentioned it to my sister, that I realized my pattern follows the moon cycle: she told me she has the same problem, and so do a surprising number of other family members, and that it is ALWAYS around the days of the full moon. The study the Austrian ‘experts’ have done is inisgnificant and irrelevant; fact is that millions of people around the world report that their sleep pattern is affected by the moon. If they really wanted to explore the reasons behind, they should have asked those who suffer instead. This study’ is the equivalent of learning about obesity by ways of monitoring a test group of anorectics!

    Posted by Anja
  27. September 12, 2011 @ 9:09 pm


    Its 5 in the morning, no sleep and a really busy day ahead. I’ve had this full moon related insomnia pretty much all my life and I can differentiate between this and other insomnia. Full moon insomnia produces a weird feeling in my head, like somethings pulling my brain upwards. My friends have always had a laugh about this but now with the internet, other people seem to be suffering as well. I knew tonight before even looking up moon cycles just because its such a familiar feeling. My dad also has this but none of the rest of my family seems to be affected. I mentioned this to my doctor who looked at me like Id gone mad. Its very hard to explain to those who dont get it. There is nothing I can do- just try and catch up on sleep when I can

    Posted by Jackieb
  28. September 15, 2011 @ 2:15 am


    I am 46 years old and noticed at the age of thirty three I went from sleeping like a baby
    in my cool totally pitch dark apt. to getting married and having skylights in our bedroom to having sleep problems since. It is 5:09 a.m. and sure enough 3rd night of a full moon and I have not been to sleep yet. My body is exhausted and I am wide awake. No racing thoughts, just cannot fall off to sleep. I too have taken numerous sleeping pills over the years that work but with side effects that haunt me to this day. I am convinced w/o a doubt that extended use of Ambien will cause short term memory loss and ring ear. Nice to see that I am not crazy and to read that so many other’s are experiencing the same problems. I think I will take Mia’s advice and hit the B vitamins. Thanks

    Posted by Mctilla
  29. March 6, 2012 @ 9:56 pm


    I don’t know about my entire past bc I’ve never connected the dots before the past couple of months, but for certain, the last two months I have had severe insomnia during the full moon. Severe. I didn’t even know there was a full moon tonight but last night I could not fall asleep until 10am this morning! Then slept for 5 hours and was wide awake. Makes me feel less crazy knowing I’m not the only one. My intuition tells me that maybe it is bc I am a nocturnal type person that the moon affects me more than it does other people. I like how another person on this thread just accepts it and plans their to do list around this every month. I’ll have to start doing that.

    Posted by Monica
  30. July 20, 2012 @ 12:23 am


    i have the same problem. i’m 14 and for about a year now i can never ever fall asleep when there’s a full moon! i guess i’m one of the 8% because ill stay up all night on full moons and the next morning at around 10 i fall asleep! this sucks especially on school nights its horrible! I’ve even tried sleeping pills and trying to go to bed earlier than i normally do and nothing works:( I don’t know what to do!

    Posted by Emily
  31. August 30, 2012 @ 2:29 am


    I’m an educated and rational human being. I’ve studied physics to a reasonably advanced level as part of an engineering degree and so I’m not a person that is easily swayed by superstition…

    …but then I get that tense, headachy feel behind the eyes, start to feel impatient and aggressive towards other people, including my own family, and can’t sleep for more than 3 or 4 hours. I look out of the window, and sure enough, there it is!

    You see the problem I have with this Austrian research is this:
    Firstly, as someone has already pointed out, maybe the researchers should have focused their efforts on to the 8% and tried to identify the true nature of their insomnia.
    Secondly, 8% is still a significant number. That would make 25 million Americans for example, or 5 million Brits. There wouldn’t be many other public health issues so easily dismissed on such a figure.

    Posted by Jeff
  32. August 30, 2012 @ 5:13 pm


    IM NOT SURE WHAT WAS PAYED OUT ON THE ABOVE STUDY BUT I KNOW IT WAS NOT WORTH A PENNY AS I NEVER EVER SLEEP ON A FULL MOON(IN FACT ITS A FULL MOON RIGHT NOW AND ITS 01.13 AND COUNTING.STUDY ME FREE OF CHARGE AS I WANT TO KNOW WHY I DONT SLEEP ON A FULL MOON

    Posted by leaman
  33. October 19, 2012 @ 1:09 pm


    This is been going on for many years, not sleeping during a full moon and days after. Even when I take a sleep aid, I’m still not sleeping as well during the days when there is a full moon compared to the other days in the month. Very strange.

    Posted by Melanie
  34. November 6, 2012 @ 2:28 pm


    Interestingly Ihave noticed that over the last 8 years since my husband had a breakdown and now suffers from excessive sleep disorder amongst other that in the days preceding a full moon he becomes more and more sleepy and looks dreadful. He looks extremely pale and drawn and he is barely able to stay awake to eat or do anything constructive. All the Consultants I have spoken to about this claim that the moon has nothing to do with it and it is just wilful behaviour on his part which I completely disagree with.
    I would very much welcome your comments as to whether the moon can indeed affect sleep in this way and why. In the short time between full moon and the days preceding new moon he is reasonably alert and can carry out fairly complex tasks but in the immediate days prior and during the full moon and new moon is a totaly different character and is either moody and awkward or just sleeps all the time.

    Please help me with some kind of rational explanation as to why this happens. I really am not a freak, I just notice the tines when my husband acts out of character.

    Posted by Lynn
  35. December 12, 2012 @ 8:26 am


    I’m currently 20 years of age and I can never sleep on a full moon, my mother never did when I was a child either so I assume she’s affected by the lunar cycle also. Also unsure on the relevance but my menstral cycle is always on the night of the new moon and I can’t sleep the majority of the night then either. I normally get really tired if I miss a nights sleep or stay up too late (with out the influence of alchohol of course) but during the lunar cycle I have way too much energy to sleep I usually clean the entire flat I live at though so its not all bad 😛

    Posted by Rachel
  36. February 11, 2013 @ 7:32 am


    Actually, I don’t have any problem sleeping on full moon and I sleep great on full moon. The problem is I can’t sleep on new moon. I tried using all of my energy until I am so tired I can’t move but I lay in bed for hours and I can’t sleep. I am really tired the next day but when it’s night I sleep like never before (except when it’s full moon because that’s the best night every month). It’s strange that most people have the opposite problem. If someone has my problem, please wright. It’s better to know you are not the only one. email: deeesi1@abv.bg

    Posted by Dessi
  37. February 28, 2013 @ 6:59 am


    I am a cancer or a moon child.I have always had trouble sleeping with a full moon or close to one.I have lived in many different types of houses.I believe cement roofs help.The rocks seem to work compared to tin roofs.I can be in complete darkness or cloudy,rainy conditions & can feel a full moon “high”(like a second wind).The scientist that devise these tests are usually in large buildings with cement walls & ceilings.
    All I know is that I can tell what nights are full moons wether I can see it or not.I will feel a second wind of energy until morning,then feel sooo tired the next day like tonight!

    Posted by Al Thorstad
  38. May 26, 2013 @ 4:57 pm


    In a perverse way, I find reading the comments of others who suffer from full moon insomnia comforting as it makes me feel less alone.

    I’ve been going through this for at least 8 years now [I’m in my late 50s], and have found on nights I couldn’t sleep to save myself, I’d look out the window and it would be full moon. I didn’t know it was any more than any of the other commenters. I will be absolutely unable to fall asleep no matter how tired I am until around 4:30 to 8 a.m. When I do get to sleep, it will be a very light, dreamy sleep which is unusual for me as I usual don’t remember my dreams.

    In researching this, I tend to agree with something I read in another article about possible magnetic fields being impacted by the full moon, and that impacting our brains. I also wonder if our cortisol levels are higher as that will prevent you from sleeping. I have naturally high cortisol levels late in the day so I take a supplement to lower them, and sleep decent 85% of the time.

    Other things I’ve noticed is that before I started taking the supplement to control my cortisol levels, I would be unable to sleep if it was raining, foggy and windy. We don’t get much snow where I live, but when we do, I would be awake then as well.

    If 8% of the population had the bird flu or some other disease, medical science would be all over it, but if it’s just insomnia blamed on the full moon, we’re nuts……

    Posted by Hayley

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