Published: 01/22/2015 - Updated: 12/29/2017
Author: MSc. Miriam Reyes
Some people may not be fully educated regarding yawning, which is frequently thought to be caused as a sign of annoyance or boredom, although for others, it’s simply a sign of fatigue. Physical tiredness could be caused by work overload, several hours in front of the computer, lack of oxygenation or a good diet and nutrients for the brain, anemia, etc. That’s why we sleep at night, so the body can repair itself and reorder its systems and other things.
But if you were to study a little more closely what yawning was all about, you might find a more interesting interpretation. Yawning is, you could say, the introduction to sleep. We all know that when the body needs rest, or when the mind is bored and needs relaxation, we yawn. Something inside us lets us know that we need to sleep or rest a bit. However, sleep is not only a time to repair oneself, or rest the body or mind. It also serves as a refuge or disconnection from reality. Whenever we don’t want to connect to the world because there are demands, or problems, or things we don’t like or don’t know how to solve, you might feel the urge to sleep. In that case, even when you’ve rested enough the previous night, you might feel tired and yawn. That’s why a lot of people that tend to be depressed or lack motivation generally yawn or sleep a lot. It is one way to remove yourself from what is weighing you down or stressing you out.
Whenever you’ve slept well the previous night and you feel tired or are yawning a lot, you might need to take a look at whether or not you are trying to avoid certain life circumstances. There might be things that are stressing you out too much, problems or feelings of pain or indecision, as well as emotional pain or depression. You might try to possibly avoid them.
Another cause of yawning is when you feel intimidated by someone and you don’t know how to please them. This means, you want your boyfriend, girlfriend, boss, friends, etc., to like you, but you don’t know how to please them, you get stressed by this, and you want to avoid it by going to sleep. So even though you’re having a good time with someone or you want to be there, you may yawn, not out of boredom, but out of excessive worry that the other likes you.
Another reason that could cause yawning is whenever you don’t understand something at school or at work. Whenever a young chemistry student, for example, doesn’t understand formulas or a term well, and there are symbols they aren’t familiar with, or that they don’t know their meaning, this could start comprehension gaps which may lead to boredom or drowsiness. This is expressed in yawns, because they don’t understand the text, or what they’re studying. So if you’re studying and frequently yawning, it might be better to go back to the last paragraph, or to wherever you feel you stopped understanding it.
What should I do if I frequently yawn throughout the day?
- Make sure you’re sleeping at least 6 hours a day, uninterrupted.
- Give yourself relaxation time and do not work too hard mentally or physically.
- Make sure you’re following a healthy diet, high in minerals and proteins, fresh vegetable juices, salads, almonds, walnuts, etc.
Yawning out of stress or depression
Yawning due to stress or depression is one of the most frequent causes throughout the day. If you notice that this is your case, and you yawn every now and then, take advantage of this minor symptom to try to remove yourself from what you feel, and learn to confront whatever it is that is hurting you, or that you don’t like. Also, you might need to trust in yourself more. Stress shows us that you don’t trust in what you need to face, so start with some sort of exercise, like yoga or tai chi. This would be fantastic because it will not only help relax your body, but you’ll feel better emotionally as well.
Do not get stressed about always staying on good terms with people, or seeming perfect. Relax, and allow people to know you simply as you are. Don’t focus so much of outward acceptance, but rather what makes you feel at peace and good inside.
Revised by: Dra. Loredana Lunadei on 12/29/2017
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