Insomnia – Sleep disappears and keeps your brain awake at night

When you have insomnia, you’re never really asleep,
and you’re never really awake

Insomnia is a common sleeping disorder that affects many people worldwide. It is characterized by having trouble falling or staying asleep, resulting in feeling tired and unrefreshed during the day.

Insomnia Symptoms

The following are common symptoms of insomnia:

  • Problems falling asleep
  • Fatigue
  • Irritation
  • Difficulty in concentrating on anything
  • Drowsiness during the daytime
  • Dependency on sleeping pills
  • Waking up at midnight and then having difficulty getting back to sleep

Types of Insomnia

There are four types of insomnia:

  • Primary insomnia: This type of insomnia is not related to any medical condition or health issue.
  • Secondary insomnia: This type of insomnia is caused by an underlying medical condition such as asthma, depression, or arthritis.
  • Acute insomnia: This type of insomnia is short-term and may last for a couple of days or weeks.
  • Chronic insomnia: This type of insomnia is long-term and may last for a month or more.

Causes of Insomnia

insomnia can be caused by various factors, such as:

  • Medical conditions, including arthritis, nasal allergies, Parkinson’s disease, back pain, and body pain.
  • Emotional stress and disturbances during sleep.
  • Sickness, anxiety, and mental disorders.
  • Certain medications used to treat cancer and allergies.

Habits to Overcome Insomnia

The following are some habits that can help overcome insomnia:

  • Sleep and wake up at the proper time.
  • Exercise regularly for at least 3-4 hours before sleeping.
  • Have a light dinner before going to sleep.
  • Make sure your bedroom is warm and cozy.

Poor Habits That Affect our Sleep Cycle

Getting a good night’s sleep is crucial for our health and well-being, but there are many habits that can affect the quality and duration of our sleep. Here are some of the most common poor habits that cause sleep problems:

Using electronic devices before bed

Using smartphones, laptops, and tablets can interfere with our body’s natural sleep cycle, making it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.

Consuming caffeine late in the day

Caffeine is a stimulant that can keep us awake and alert, making it harder to fall asleep at night. It’s best to avoid consuming caffeine after midday, especially if you have trouble sleeping.

Eating heavy meals before bed

Eating a heavy meal before bed can cause indigestion and discomfort, making it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.

Drinking alcohol

Although alcohol can make us feel drowsy and relaxed, it can disrupt our sleep cycle and cause us to wake up frequently at night.

Not sticking to a sleep schedule

Going to bed and waking up at different times each day can disrupt our body’s natural sleep cycle and make it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.

Is Insomnia Even More Prevalent Nowadays?

Approximately 30% of adults in the United States suffer from insomnia, and 10% have chronic insomnia.

However, there is no clear evidence that insomnia is more prevalent today than it was in the past. Still, several factors suggest that insomnia may be more common today than in previous years.

One of the significant factors that contribute to insomnia is technology. The widespread use of smartphones, computers, and tablets before bedtime can interfere with sleep patterns. The blue light radiated by these devices suppresses melatonin production, a hormone that controls sleep.

Another factor is the increasing levels of stress and anxiety experienced by people today. Modern society’s fast-paced, demanding lifestyle can lead to chronic stress, making it difficult to relax and fall asleep at night.

Insomnia FAQs

insomnia can negatively affect a person’s physical and mental health if left untreated. It can lead to daytime fatigue, irritability, difficulty concentrating, and an increased chance of accidents and injuries. Chronic insomnia has also been linked to a higher risk of acquiring certain health conditions such as depression, anxiety, and cardiovascular disease.

Yes, insomnia can have a genetic component. Research has identified specific genes that may contribute to the development of insomnia. However, environmental factors can also play a role.

insomnia can be treated and managed with lifestyle changes, therapy, and medication. With proper treatment, insomnia can go away.

insomnia is typically diagnosed through physical exams, medical history reviews, sleep logs, and sleep questionnaires. To diagnose insomnia, your healthcare provider may inquire about your sleep habits and sleep patterns and request that you keep a sleep diary.

The duration of insomnia can vary depending on the cause and individual factors. It may be short-term, lasting a few nights or weeks, or it may be chronic, lasting for months or even years. Treatment can help improve symptoms and promote better sleep.

If you have insomnia lasting more than a few weeks and affecting your daily life, it is recommended to seek medical help. It is also advisable to seek medical attention if you experience symptoms such as excessive sleepiness, difficulty concentrating, or irritability during the day.

Yes, some medications such as steroids, antidepressants, and ADHD medications can cause insomnia as a side effect. It is always recommended to consult with a doctor if you experience any sleep disturbances while taking medication.

insomnia can increase the risk of developing mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression.

You can do a few things to prevent insomnia, including maintaining a consistent sleep schedule, not consuming caffeine and alcohol before bed, creating a relaxing bedtime routine, and avoiding electronic devices before bed.

Chronic insomnia is a sleep disorder characterized by difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, or waking up too early and not falling back asleep. It is considered chronic when it lasts for at least three months.

The potential side effects of insomnia medications include dizziness, drowsiness, headaches, and nausea. In some cases, they can also lead to addiction and dependence, as well as memory and cognitive impairments.

insomnia itself is a sleep disorder characterized by difficulty falling or staying asleep. However, chronic insomnia can lead to other sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea, PLMD, and restless leg syndrome.

While insomnia has no cure, it can be managed effectively with proper treatment and lifestyle changes. Many people with insomnia can improve the quality of their sleep and reduce symptoms with the right approach.

Best doctors to get over insomnia and sleep disorders

Dr. Joann Mundin, MD Psychiatrist

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