Insomnia: a Comprehensive Review of This Grueling Condition

For human beings, sleep is very important. Sleep deprivation leads to general body weakness and can cause various mental disorders. Among the many sleeping disorders that humans suffer from, insomnia is a common one. Unfortunately, most people neither recognize that they already have this condition nor know what helps with insomnia.

It is critical to have the right information so that you know how to deal with the situation. Being a sleep medicine specialist and a person who has experienced insomnia before, I am aware of the remedies that work and those that do not. In this article, I present the details you should know about insomnia from a personal experience perspective. Apart from getting the definition, you have the chance to observe the symptoms, try out a test for insomnia, get information on treatment and methods for its prevention.

What Is the Right Insomnia Definition? Get the Expert’s Answer

Insomnia is a situation in which one finds it hard to sleep or struggles to stay in a sleepy state. If you have been wondering what insomnia is, you now have the possibility to get a more precise answer. People who suffer from this condition often feel uncomfortable with their sleep patterns.

Reliable recent research conducted by the National Sleep Foundation (NSF) points to the fact that more than 30% of adults exhibit symptoms of insomnia. These include mainly the inability to initiate sleep and a low sleep quality. Therefore, it is a common problem that cannot be ignored. It was also stated that people of advanced age are more likely to experience insomnia symptoms.

The condition can be divided into different categories depending on its causes and severity. The aim is to make it easy for you to distinguish the levels. The types are as highlighted below: 

💤 Cronic insomnia – people with this type may go for 3 nights in a week without falling asleep. What is still worse, it may continue for 3 months or more.

💤 Comorbid insomnia is another type of this exhausting state. It comes as a result of other psychiatric conditions like depression, prolonged anxiety, or both of them. There are also some illnesses like arthritis, which may interfere with sleep patterns.

💤 Maintenance insomnia – in this case, you wake up at night and struggle to go back to sleep. Although this may seem normal to you, it is a condition that should be addressed early for the improvement of your life. However, it is also important to note that the amount of sleep that is ideal for one person varies from what will suit another individual. An adult should sleep for between 6 hours to 8 hours every night.

What Is the Cause of Insomnia in Ordinary Life

Big bright moon and sheep

Although there are cases when insomnia is the sole problem of a particular person, there are also other factors that trigger it. Those who have chronic insomnia attribute it to different situations. These include circumstances where one is exposed to stressful conditions, gets involved in activities that interfere with sleep patterns, or if one has experienced disturbing life events.

So, what is insomnia caused by? Here are some of the factors that may make you suffer from this condition:

Stress from the Different Life Experiences You Go Through

Many people have to deal with the immense pressure from their workplace, demands to perform in school, different health issues, and financial problems. Because you are thinking about these things actively and try to come up with working solutions, you may find it hard to fall asleep when they take part of your night. There are also other traumatic events like an accident you witnessed, instances of attack by criminals, or divorce – all these events may cause insomnia.

A Hectic Travel, School, or Work Timetable

There exists an internal mechanism that determines the times you involve in different activities. More importantly, in this case, it influences the time you go to sleep and wake up. At times, you can disrupt the sleep pattern if these activities take place. Factors that can lead to the changes include traveling for many hours and crossing different time zones, working too early in the morning or during night shifts, and frequently changing the times you go to sleep or wake up. All this can be a cause for insomnia, and you should be aware of taking preventive measures.

Improper Sleeping Habits or Patterns

Woman lying on the bed and looking on the tablet at night

Some activities are said to be unhealthy when it comes to sleep and are among the causes of insomnia. Examples of these habits include:

  • Creating an irregular pattern of going to bed;
  • Having unscheduled naps during the day;
  • Engaging in an activity that requires a lot of energy a few minutes before bedtime;
  • Sleeping in an uncomfortable place;
  • Turning your bed into a work environment;
  • Watching TV late at night;
  • Using bright screens before bed.

Any of these factors can interfere with the way you sleep and be a cause of insomnia. Be prudent and take care of yourself to minimize the possible effects of these factors on your sleep.

Old Age as One of the Insomnia Causes

What causes insomnia at an advanced age? For older people, it is common to experience this condition. As people get older, some modifications in the way they sleep take place. The changes may arise in the form of getting tired early in the evening and being awake with a rise of the sun. Secondly, old people may not be physically involved during the day. This interferes with their night sleep. Additionally, the medications older people take also increase their chances of suffering from this condition.

What Are Other Causes of Sleep Insomnia?

The above causes are not the only ones as there are other things that trigger insomnia. Let’s examine these causes:

  • Mental states, like anxiety, also lead to this condition. For example, waking up too early is a sign that you may be depressed.
  • Some medications contain caffeine, which keeps one awake. Some medical conditions like diabetes and heart complications are also known to create the need for CBT insomnia.
  • Pregnancy insomnia is also common. It mostly occurs in the 1st and 3rd trimesters. The triggers are the changes in the activities of the hormones, instances of nausea, and the need to urinate frequently. The other factors that may keep you awake at this period include anxiety, painful cramps, and discomfort because of the changes that are happening in your body.

As pregnancy is a sensitive time, you should put measures to remedy this situation. Some treatments that can be applied in helping insomnia conditions include ensuring you stay active during the pregnancy period, are well-hydrated all of the time, maintain a predictable sleep pattern, and stick to a healthy diet.

The Indications of Insomnia

Whether you have insomnia in pregnancy or at any other time, there are some common symptoms that you are likely to experience. Straining to fall asleep during the nighttime is a symptom of insomnia you should already know. Other indicators include:

  • Abrupt waking up and failing to sleep again;
  • Waking up earlier than usual;
  • Feeling fatigued when you wake up;
  • Unexplained tiredness during the day;
  • Depression and feeling irritable;
  • Inability to focus or concentrate on important tasks;
  • You become prone to errors.

If you find out you have even a single symptom insomnia has caused – it is a sign that you should do something about the condition. Do not wait until your sleeplessness becomes too serious.

What Are the Insomnia Tests That Work?

Before indicating the ICD 9 code for insomnia, the doctor does several examinations depending on your situation. These tests are distinguished below:

Physical Examination

There are cases when the cause of insomnia is not defined. The physician has the responsibility to look at the signs that you are exhibiting, as they may be related to insomnia ICD 9. An advanced exam involves testing your blood to ascertain the existence of a thyroid problem or any other factor which causes sleeplessness.

A Comprehensive Review of Your Sleeping Patterns

The doctor will definitely make inquiries related to the times you wake up and go to bed. To ensure the accuracy of the information, you may be required to keep and record a sleep diary for some time. That information is assessed to determine your sleeplessness level.

Studying Your Sleep

In case the symptoms are unclear, or there is a chance that you may be suffering from other sleep disorders, the doctor cannot just record an ICD 10 code for insomnia. Instead, you are monitored more closely. You stay at the center as several tests are taken when awake and asleep. The results are assessed to determine what you may be suffering from.

What Is the Most Effective Insomnia Treatment Method?

Now that you already know what is insomnia, it is useful to understand the various treatment measures that can be applied when you suffer from it. You can investigate the following best remedies for this condition:

 

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Abbreviates as CBT

Insomnia CBT is used to help you remove the negative thoughts that trigger insomnia. Since the anxious thoughts that keep you awake are eliminated, you can now sleep properly. The first coaching involves being trained to create a consistent timetable for sleep. Your bed is only reserved for sexual activities and sleeping. Any time you do not feel like sleeping, you are advised to leave the bed and wait till you are sleepy. The bed should be associated with sleeping. This is an effective method of how to cure insomnia.

There are also specific relaxation approaches that can help you eliminate anxiety before bedtime. By controlling your heart rate and reducing the tension in your muscles, you find it easy to relax and sleep.

The next technique is to reduce bedtime and eliminate naps. This makes you fatigued, thus sleepy the next day. With time, your sleeping pattern may improve. Additionally, the doctor can give other recommendations depending on your situation.

The Proper Insomnia Medication to Take

Several medications induce sleep and ensure you remain in the same state. They include medicines such as Zaleplon and Eszopiclone. You can also use sleep aids that are sold over the counter. Consult your doctor for the best insomnia cures.

Are There Things You Still Do Not Know About Insomnia?

People have many questions about insomnia, especially if they consider they have it. With my experience in this area, I can provide you with the answers in addition to explaining how to define insomnia:

The main question that most people ask if they think they have insomnia as a symptom arises, how is insomnia treated? However, their focus of attention should shift to the prevention of sleeplessness. Some measures that can help in avoiding cases of chronic insomnia include reducing the intake of caffeine close to bedtime, avoiding naps during the day, refusing the use of technological devices like smartphones before bed, having a comfortable sleeping surface, and creating a dark environment in your sleep area.

Numerous medical situations can lead to the occurrence of insomnia. They include asthma, depression, anxiety, and diabetes, among others. It is good to know the cause in order to get the best insomnia treat.

As this drug leads to an increase in the amount of energy in the body, it is linked with insomnia fatal familial. Therefore, Dexamethasone should be taken early so that the effect wears off before bedtime.

Amlodipine is commonly known to cause sleeplessness. Therefore, you should avoid taking it close to bedtime.

The Final Word

At this point, you already have the information you need about the definition of insomnia, what causes it, its diagnosis, treatment, and the measures you can take to prevent the state. It is important to take the symptoms seriously and think of the next step to prevent the condition from reaching the chronic level, where it becomes fatal familial insomnia. Take note of what helps for insomnia and make the right move to your physical and mental health. 

Noteworthy, while treating the underlying health issues that result in insomnia is an important step, it may not be sufficient enough to eliminate your sleeplessness. You should overlook your daily habits, as well. Some things that you may think would cure insomnia may actually worsen it.

Being a therapist, I know what practically works, and the information I have shared here is reliable. Hopingly, the content will come in handy if you want to sleep healthy. Have you ever suffered from insomnia? What strategy did you use to recover? Share your experience by leaving a comment below.

foto of Catherine Rodgers

I am a certified therapist. The area of my study includes sleep medicine as well. I’ve chosen this field of research not by chance. For years I’ve suffered from insomnia, and have been trying various medicines, including sleeping techniques, natural remedies, and even hypnosis. According to my observations, the quality of sleep depends on numerous external and internal factors that may seem irrelevant at first sight.

Catherine Rodgers

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