Insomnia is a sleep disorder in which a person is having trouble falling and/or staying asleep. The condition can be short-term (acute) or can last a long (chronic). It may also come and go.
Acute insomnia lasts from 1 night to a few weeks. Insomnia is chronic when it happens at least 3 nights a week for 3 months or more.
Types of Insomnia
There are two types of insomnia; primary and secondary.
- Primary insomnia – this means the sleep problems aren’t linked to any other health condition or problem.
- Secondary Insomnia – this means a person has trouble sleeping because of health conditions (like asthma, depression, arthritis, cancer, or heartburn); pain medication or substance use (like alcohol).
Insomnia symptoms may include;
- Difficulty falling asleep at night
- Waking up during the night
- Waking up too early
- Not feeling well-rested after a night’s sleep
- Daytime tiredness or sleepiness
- irritability , depression or anxiety
- Difficulty paying attention, focusing on tasks or remembering
- Increased errors or accidents
- Ongoing worries about worries about sleep
The cause of a person’s insomnia will depend on the type of sleeplessness they experience.
Short-term insomnia may be caused by stress, an upsetting or traumatic event, or changes to their sleep habits.
Chronic insomnia usually lasts for at least three months and is usually secondary to another problem or a combination of problems, including;
- Medical conditions which make it harder to sleep, such as arthritis or back pain
- Psychological issues, such as anxiety or depression
- Substance use
Acute insomnia may not need treatment. But as for chronic insomnia, the patient will need treatment for the conditions or health problems that are keeping them awake.
The doctor might also suggest behavioural therapy. This can help change the things that the patient does that make insomnia worse and learn what they can do to promote sleep.
Prescription sleeping pills can help the patient get to sleep, stay asleep or both. Doctors generally don’t recommend relying on prescription sleeping pills for more than a few weeks, but several medications are approved for long-term use.
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We provide free medical estimates, make medical appointments, and provide several medical opinions if needed at no cost.
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