It is a known fact that, to be able to lead a meaningful life, one must be able to sleep well at night. Unfortunately, insomnia is a very common problem today and in most cases, the patients’ ability to function during the day is greatly hampered by lack of sleep at night. It takes a toll not only on their energy, but in chronic cases, it can even contribute to serious health problems.
Fortunately, different kinds of sleep aids are available today. Although they help to induce sleep, some of them are habit forming. Hence one should be cautious about using them randomly.
What Is Insomnia: Loosely speaking, insomnia is the disability to fall asleep or to stay asleep as long as one wishes. However, experts put it a little differently. They say that insomnia is actually a sleep disorder, in which a patient fails to get the amount of sleep he/she needs to wake up feeling rested and refreshed. Though, different people may need different amounts of sleep; therefore, insomnia should be defined by the quality of the sleep – not the number of hours one sleeps. Another important point is that, very often, insomnia is not a disease by itself. Instead, it may be the symptom of another problem. In such cases, it is always better to look into that first.
Symptoms of Insomnia: If one faces difficulty in falling asleep despite being tired, it may happen that the person is suffering from sleeping disorder. Waking up frequently at night, waking up too early in the morning, not being able to go back to sleep immediately, dependence on alcohol or sleeping pills to induce sleep, can also be some other symptoms. Other than that, if one suffers from drowsiness, fatigue, irritability and lack of concentration during the day, it is time to check for insomnia.
Causes Of Insomnia: It is a fact that emotional issues such as stress, anxiety, and depression are the root cause behind half of the cases. However, the daytime habits or sleep routine and physical health of the patient can also play a pivotal role. Indeed, diseases such as asthma, allergies, Parkinson’s disease, hyperthyroidism, acid reflux, kidney disease and cancer are known to induce sleeplessness. Moreover, medications such as cold and flu medicines that contain alcohol; pain relievers that contain caffeine (Midol, Excedrin); diuretics, corticosteroids, thyroid hormone, antidepressants; high blood pressure medications etc can also cause insomnia in many. Therefore, it is very important to identify all possible causes of the insomnia before one proceeds with the treatment.
Treatment for Insomnia: As we have pointed out, various types of sleep aid are available today; but one should not use them randomly without consulting the doctor. Therefore, the first step is to consult the doctor and find out the root cause behind such sleeplessness. Meanwhile, one should also look into the daily habit and make sure there is nothing in it that may induce such sleep disorder. May be it is nothing but the late night TV serial, which is responsible for such sleeplessness. Keeping diaries to identify the problems is also a good idea. Besides, it may also help if the patient sticks to a regular schedule, avoid stimulating activities as well as stressful situations before bedtime. It is also important to avoid short naps and limit alcohol, caffeine as well as nicotine intake throughout the day. Moreover, one should learn to replace the self-defeating thoughts with more positive views. One can also use different relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, progressive muscle relaxation etc to overcome sleeplessness. Exercising regularly and having warm bath before bed time may also help to induce sleep. In short, insomnia is a curable disorder and one can easily overcome it without random use of sleep aids.
Anna is a health and fitness blogger who loves to write articles about health and weight loss. Recently she read on Insomnia and how it can benefit in weight loss.