WHAT IS INSOMNIA?
The inability to sleep sufficiently is referred to as insomnia. This sounds simple on the surface, but there are many different factors that can affect one’s ability to sleep. Sometimes, it’s simple jet lag. Other times, a stressful or traumatic experience could be the cause. Whatever the reason, figuring out the underlying contributors to insomnia is essential to getting life and health back under control.
Insomnia usually falls into one of the following three types:
- Chronic: This is long-lasting insomnia that exceeds six months. In many cases, a medical condition contributes to a lack of sleep, such as chronic pain, headaches, or depression. The use of alcohol, stimulants, and medication may also contribute to chronic insomnia.
- Intermittent: This is temporary but longer-lasting insomnia that can occur for up to six months. Its causes are usually related to mental stress, such as losing a loved one, experiencing financial troubles, or suffering a serious injury. Sometimes simple sleep disturbance due to noise can also be a factor.
- Transient: This is temporary insomnia that usually occurs because of a stressful event, such as an exam, looming deadline, or starting a new job. It often lasts for a week or less.
If you are concerned about your inability to sleep well, it is a good idea to consult with a medical professional familiar with insomnia and its underlying causes.
TREATMENT OF INSOMNIA
Transient and intermittent insomnia usually resolve over time, but chronic insomnia may require additional intervention. There are two main ways to treat lack of quality sleep:
In some cases, you may benefit from implementing certain medications to counteract difficulty falling asleep. The medication could be a sedative to promote total sleep time, or it could be used to treat other physical and mental health conditions that may be contributing to the sleep-wake cycle disturbance.
This therapy involves evaluating the causes of insomnia and working toward positive habits to promote healthy sleep. This could involve suggestions on sleep cycles as well as adjustments to activity levels and diet.