There are many people who have difficult sleeping, or find that their sleep is disturbed, and inconsistent. This often leads to statements that they suffer from Insomnia, but what exactly is it? This article provides an overview of details related to Insomnia, in addition to some of its symptoms and causes.
What is Insomnia?
A direct definition of Insomnia is simple – it is a chronic inability to sleep. Those who struggle with insomnia often have a generally poor quality of sleep, and report symptoms such as low energy levels, problems with focus and concentration, unbalanced emotional state and mood issues, and decreased performance in work and study.
Is Insomnia Permanent?
Insomnia afflicts every person differently, and as such, is defined differently based on the length of time that people are challenged by it. In more extreme cases, referred to as Chronic Insomnia, sleep is disrupted more than several nights a week, and continues for months and months. Less severe is known as Acute Insomnia, and is usually very short term, and is usually the result of short term issues or life stresses, and is normally resolved quickly and without treatment.
Chronic insomnia disorders can be brought on by various circumstances. From generally poor sleep habits, to shift work, or even certain medications – all of these can be the catalyst that leads to Chronic Insomnia. Those who suffer from Chronic Insomnia are most successful in dealing with their sleeping challenges by working with a professional sleep therapist, as the actual reasons for their sleep challenges can be difficult to identify, and working with a sleep therapist can provide assistance in solving sleep issues and managing your sleep cycle in general.
Insomnia Statistics & Details
An estimated 30 percent of the general population suffer from sleep related issue or temporary acute insomnia (National Institutes of Health)
Around 10% of the general population are challenged by Chronic Insomnia (
The most common symptoms of insomnia are waking up and still feeling tired and unrefreshed, and waking up many times in the night
Insomnia is one of the most common sleep disorders with approximately half of adults reporting having symptoms of insomnia occasionally.
Insomnia is more prevalent with females then males.
Parents experience the symptoms of Insomnia more than those without children
Regular users of alcohol report experiencing Insomnia more than others
Those who nap regularly are more likely to report Insomnia symptoms
Treatment and Solutions to Insomnia
In most cases, those who suffer from short term, or Acute Insomnia, do not require any specific therapy and/or treatment. The effects and symptoms of acute insomnia can pass as life issues change, or with small adjustment to sleeping habits. For those who suffer more regular and consistent, or Chronic Insomnia, are widely recommended to consult with a sleep therapist, as the treatments may require a more in-depth review on a case-by-case basis, to ensure that the motivating conditions are investigated to determine the causes of the Insomnia.
There are a few approaches to treating Insomnia, and many of the treatments involve behavioral therapy, which involves a review of the underlying behaviors of an individual, which may be causing the insomnia, and focusing on appropriate adjustments to solve the issues. These can include lifestyle changes, mediation, and creating a deliberate and scheduled sleep/wake cycle to improve an individuals sleep quality.
There are, of course, more intense medical treatments for insomnia, that include the use of medications to assist in finding sleep. It is suggested however, that such treatments be taken as a last resort, as the use of medication invariably results in side-effects of various kinds. Additionally, consistent and long term use of medications to assist with sleep, can result in addiction, and often means that medication strength must be adjusted over time, as the effectiveness declines with regular use.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this short overview, and we would love to hear your thoughts, experiences and ideas related to this, or other sleep related issues, in the comments below. Feel free to join us, and keep up to date on the latest details, research, information and sleep related products.