Since I also suspect that stress related problems might be at the source of my sleep issues, I wanted to conduct an experiment with an anxiolytic. Therefore, I took 0.5 mg of Xanaxfor 6 days in a row (either in 2 intakes of 0.25 mg in the morning and in the evening, or in a single one in the evening). Xanax (alprazolam) is a benzodiazepine approved to treat acute anxiety states.
The impact of Xanax on my Deep and REM sleep is represented on the figure below. Interestingly, the results clearly show that under the influence of the molecule, my REM sleep increases drastically (from 7% on average to 17% on Xanax), while my Deep sleep is significantly screwed up (from 16% on average to 7% on Xanax). As mentioned from my sleep architecture, a male of my age with “normal” sleep patterns spends on average 14% of his total sleep in Deep sleep and 30% in REM.
At that stage, I do not know how to interpret these results, I need to conduct more research before drawing any conclusions.
Fig. 1: My percentage of Deep and REM sleep around my Xanax intake period.