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THIS Is Why You Jerk Awake Right Before You Fall Asleep

You know when you've had a cup of hot cocoa, you've tucked yourself into bed and you're just teetering on the brink of sleep and then BAM!

All of a sudden it feels like you're falling and you violently jerk awake, with a pounding heart and, chances are, having elbowed or kicked your bed partner somewhere.

Well that's called a hypnagogic jerk; if that's too difficult to pronounce, just stick with us in calling it bloody annoying.

According to Live Science, between 60 and 70 per cent of us have experienced a hypnagogic jerk, which occurs when you're between waking and sleeping; interestingly, while you may only feel them as you're dropping off, you can actually be having them throughout the night without realising.

Since trying to understanding sleep is like trying to understand the ocean - we kind of know what's going on there but, for the most part, too deep - there are a number of different theories as to why we're hypnagogic jerking so much.

The first is pretty straight-forward: you're overtired, stress or anxious and your brain just can't quite shut off.

Another theory is that your brain is suddenly convinced that you're dying thanks to a couple of misfiring nerves as you try to drift off to sleep.

But our favourite is that hypnagogic jerks hark back to ye olde times, when our ancestors used to sleep in trees and their brains were trying to make sure they weren't about to fall out of them.

Sort of like a primordial alarm clock.


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